Since about half of today's smart-device owners require set-up assistance, tech support for smart homes is a big concern -- and opportunity -- for service providers.
In 2020, the US will see 13.5 million support requests derived from smart home devices and systems, compared with 11 million this year, according to "Tech Support: Influencing IoT Adoption."
Devices are getting more complex, using more sophisticated apps and increasingly integrated with other devices and smartphones, according to Parks Associates. That could mean more than half of consumers will seek post-sales support for deploying their new connected Internet of Things (IoT) device.
"Broadband providers have been interested in this space for a very long time. They had lots more connected devices coming into the home and people were calling the broadband provider for help," said Patrice Samuels, senior analyst at Parks Associates, in an interview. "And they're like, 'These are our customers. We have two options: We can turn them away and say, 'Okay, this is not really the umbrella of what we cover under our basic support,' or we can say, 'Hey we'll take care of that for you and charge you a premium or fees to take care of those issues for you.' So they've been dabbling in it for a long time."
Because it's an immature market subject to product failures today, most support is included in the device price, she said. However, some businesses have carved out a niche by providing fee-based set-up services, she said.
In addition to exploring ways to improve home Wi-Fi to eliminate connectivity-related calls, broadband providers also are exploring premium services for smart homes, said Samuels, whose clients include tech support companies hired by large manufacturers. In time, Samuels expects service providers to hire these firms to support their residential subscribers' smart home solutions.
Broadband-infrastructure financial firm CoBank found rural Type II diabetes patients felt better, had improved relationships with their healthcare providers -- and saved money, when they had high-speed-powered telemedicine.
Fiber-only broadband services provider Greenlight Networks uses infusion of capital for 525% headcount increase and accelerated deployment of fiber optic networks to expanded customer base in Rochester, NY, region.
Wi-Fi is the foundation of the connected home for consumers; yet, it’s often a source of frustration. With the imminent release of the new Wi-Fi 6 standard – combined with a strong Managed Wi-Fi offer – service providers can reverse subscriber frustration while tapping into new revenue streams.
Key topics include:
What’s different about Wi-Fi 6 and why it matters to your subscribers
The importance of offering Managed Wi-Fi and its connection to Wi-Fi 6
How you can elevate your brand and gain a strong foothold in the home network.
In this insightful Light Reading radio show, Kurt Raaflaub, Head of Strategic Solutions Marketing, will outline the key service provider challenges, deployment considerations, next-gen Gigabit technologies, and service models to win market share in the rapidly growing MDU market.