Last week on Research: smart homes and the internet of things

It may be August, but that doesn’t mean things have slowed down over here at GigaOM HQ. This week alone, we looked at how Tesla is set to take on the auto industry, rounded up the latest batch of rumors surrounding the new iPhone, and took a look at Google’s prospects for entering the smart watch race. Meanwhile, over on GigaOM Research, our analysts are looking at the future of the connected home – is it a perfect storm of smart devices, the internet of things, and automation? Also on Research this week: sage advice to Microsoft’s executive team, and a global look at BYOD – especially the use of tablets – in the enterprise.
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Cleantech: How the truly smart home could finally become a reality
Craig Foster and Michael Wolf
Michael Wolf and Craig Foster analyze the changes affecting the smart home sector, with a particular focus on developments in the Internet of Things (IoT) space. With the rapid rise of connected devices – everything from the high-end Nest Thermostat to cheaper DIY kits and crowdfunded products – consumer interest in the home automation and the IoT market is expanding quickly. However, many of today’s existing products are not truly IoT devices, but instead “are connected to the internet but remain isolated from one another.” Instead, Foster and Wolf concede that “for the smart home to ignite the IoT, home automation software platform vendors must provide open APIs ” – and that’s just one place to start. They go on to provide an overview of the broad spectrum of devices in the smart home sector, from individual lighting systems to whole-home automation systems and complex energy management. Foster and Wolf also look ahead at major areas of growth (including hardware, software platforms, smart meters), as well we potential market challenges (environmental legislation, security concerns linked to wireless and cloud-based systems) before closing with a segmented market overview.
Cloud: What the new Microsoft CEO should understand about the cloud computing market that Ballmer never did
David Linthicum
In light of Steve Ballmer’s announced departure, David Linthicum offers some advice to Microsoft’s executive team, urging the company to focus on cloud computing as its core growth area. Linthicum criticizes the company for becoming derivative rather than innovative, and for moving too slowly in response to shifting technology and market trends. The Redmond, Washington company has lost its market domination in so many areas where it was once the undisputed leader, and Linthicum lists three nuggets of wisdom and notes where Microsoft has gone astray in the past.
Mobile: How tablet adoption is increasing in the enterprise
Shannon Arvizu
In her latest report, Shannon Arvizu analyzes results from GigaOM Research’s recent IT Buyer’s Survey. While tablet adoption in the enterprise as a whole remains sluggish, certain market segments (and geographic areas) show particularly promising developments. In the US, the financial services sector has shown a 50% growth rate in BYOD tablet adoption, while in Asia, large life insurance companies have announced major tablet deployments to its agents. On the whole, however, Arvizu observes that tablets are still underutilized, and identifies factors that will greatly reduce two major roadblocks to adoption: enterprise tablet security and the perception of a tablet’s value and utility within the workplace. Arvizu closes with key takeaways and includes cases that can lead the way for tablet adoption across other industries, such as the health care and public services sector.