While smart homes are becoming more commercialised in the US, there are a significant number of smart home companies from Europe. By 2020 the expected revenue of the European Smart Home industry is to be $13.81 billion (marketsandmarkets.com1). Some of the companies include Siemens (Germany), Schnieder Electric S.A. (France) and Ingersoll-Rand PLC. (Ireland). The main areas of smart home innovation in Europe include security, entertainment and the increasing level of government regulation. While smart home appliances are available in Europe, the cost of installation is still high and therefore adoption of these appliances to the market are slow.
Siemens are a German company founded in 1947 operating from Munich and Berlin. It is Europe’s largest engineering company. They are involved in developing the centralised management of building systems including light, heat and electricity. In compliance with an EU directive in 2002 to increase the efficiency of buildings Siemens were given certification by the EU to begin producing electric individual zone controllers (Siemens.com). These controllers are able to regulate building systems like heating radiators and cooling systems. These controllers are usually installed in new, large buildings such as shopping centres, stadiums, hotels or leisure centres. Siemens are looking to see how these systems can be implemented on a smaller scale to a wider group of customers.
Schnieder Electric S.A. are also involved in controlling heating and electricity in building through centralized controls. They aim their products towards customers who are environmentally conscious and do not wish to waste electricity. One product that Schnieder Electric make is their solar photovoltaic panels. These are marketed towards residential housing or small businesses. These panels can provide electricity to an entire house, reducing the customer’s electricity bill by 100%.
Ingersoll-Rand PLC is an Irish company established in 1871 who are one of the top providers of smart home systems in Europe (Wikipedia). Its global headquarters are located in Sword, County Dublin. The company has grown from strength to strength over the years and in 2011 it employed over 52,000 people worldwide (Wikipedia). The company developed Nexia which is a control system that consumers can use to remotely control home appliances (Nexia.com). The product is sold in an app format that individuals can access from any smart phone or tablet. The system even includes the optional use of cameras to be able to view what is going on inside your home at any given time. This product really allows customers to streamline their daily tasks all at the touch of a button.
Marketsandmarkets.com1 http://www.marketsandmarkets.com/Market-Reports/european-smart-homes-market-1290.html accessed on 16/03/2014 at 09:15am
Nexia.com http://www.nexiahome.com/faq/ accessed on 16/03/2013 at 10:20am
Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ingersoll_Rand accessed on 16/03/2014 at 10:30am