53% of people who own connected devices aren’t planning on buying another within the next year, a study has found. Clutch, a B2B market research company, surveyed 503 people that own connected devices to find out which devices they use the most, how people use the devices, and how they plan to use connected devices in the future. Over two-thirds of the people surveyed owned smart home appliances like thermostats, locks, and TVs. Coming in second at 35% was wearables like the Apple Watch. Less than a third of people had digital assistants like Amazon Alexa or Google Home.
The study also found that people aren’t completely sold on connected devices. Not only did over half of the people say that they weren’t planning on buying another connected device in the next year, but 64% reported that they could do their day-to-day activities without connected devices. Unlike smartphones, which people use constantly for everything from mapping directions to communicating with friends and family, most people use connected devices for singular functions like checking the weather. The majority of the people surveyed didn’t know their devices’ full scope of abilities.
The study also found that most users of connected devices aren’t aware of how companies collect and use consumer data.
“Your data is shared across entire networks…all of your data is stored somewhere. Regular smartphone users don’t think about it and don’t think it really matters to them,”
said Pavel Shlenok, CTO of R-Style Lab, a software development company. Clutch’s survey confirmed this notion, as only 40% of the people surveyed knew that their data is shared across multiple devices. 31% of people thought their data was not shared across multiple devices, while 29% of people admitted that they weren’t sure. Their ignorance is especially pertinent as companies like Amazon have found major security flaws in their connected devices.
As connected devices are in their relatively early stages of technology, users’ experiences have come with challenges and benefits. The biggest challenge found in the survey was connecting to networks at 19%. Second in place was maintenance of connected devices at 13%. Other challenges included buying the device and not using it, sharing data across devices, and device malfunctions. On the other hand, connected devices do have their benefits, the biggest being access to important information at 39%. Another 20% said the biggest benefit of using connected devices was controlling their smart home devices remotely. As Gartner Inc. has forecasted that there will be 20.4 million connected devices by 2020, it’s expected that people will expand their knowledge and usage of connected devices.