As technology improves and prices fall, smart home solutions are becoming more accessible and attracting more interest from consumers. Industry leaders Apple, Amazon, and Google are all making strides in this area, and the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show brought new smart home products from many vendors in a variety of categories.

Home security: more accessible than ever

Network cameras were one of the highlights in terms of connected home devices. Apple’s HomeKit platform recently added cameras to its collection of supported devices, and so several companies were showcasing compatible devices at this year’s CES. Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa also connect with network cameras.

The biggest trends in terms of features were motion detection, facial recognition, and 360-degree viewing. Also popular was combining cameras with indoor and outdoor lighting. Ring, for example, launched an outdoor floodlight camera, and Bell & Wyson introduced a light bulb with a concealed camera and two-way microphone.

Network camera market set to make big gains

The global network camera market is thriving, and promises to do even better during the next several years. Valued at $10.22 billion in 2016, it is expected to reach $14.12 billion in the next year, and $61.64 billion by 2021. The Americas accounts for nearly half of the global market, but Asia-Pacific and Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) are expected to have faster growth (the Americas will have a year-over-year growth rate of approximately 40%, while the other two are estimated to grow at a rate of 45%).

This growth will no doubt be helped by a recent emphasis on security in Internet of Things (IoT) devices. After a major cyber attack on multiple internet giants in October 2016, which took advantage of millions of unsecured IoT devices, manufacturers are tightening security and working on eliminating vulnerabilities. CES 2017 brought products with enhanced security, as well as software and apps that can detect weaknesses and help defend against threats. This is essential to attracting a larger number of customers, as people are reluctant to adopt technology that increases threats to their personal information, or weakens the security of their home. As network cameras are still in the early stages of growth, it is important to eliminate fears and reassure people that adopting this technology will not be risky.

With such a wide variety of applications, the future looks bright for network cameras. The growing popularity and security of the IoT and smart homes means that more consumers will consider bringing these devices into their home, rather than considering security cameras to be only for companies or people with high incomes. These cameras can be used not only for exterior surveillance, but also inside the home, for purposes such as monitoring children and pets.

Enterprise applications on the rise

While home applications are growing, commercial enterprises are still major users of network cameras. These devices currently make up 37% of the global video surveillance market, and this percentage is likely to increase dramatically in the coming years. Technavio predicts that by 2021, network cameras will account for almost 77% of the market. Rising urbanization and a growing concern over safety and security will help drive demand for security cameras, including network cameras. These cameras in particular are more versatile and can perform a wider variety of tasks, such as helping manage inventory and traffic flow.

Due to their enhanced performance and an increasing number of applications, network cameras are becoming more popular and accessible. As new innovations occur, these devices will gradually take over the market, helped along by the growing interest in the IoT and smart homes.
 

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