This article first appeared on TechTarget’s IoT Agenda.
Do you remember your mobile phone from 15 years ago?
In simpler times, all we had was voice and text. Now, the average person has more than 80 apps installed on their phone. We didn’t have to worry about countless apps running simultaneously and draining resources like battery and system memory. But now, a comprehensive mobile operating system is required to manage everything. Issues that were nascent in the past, such as security, connectivity, and notifications are now core to the phone’s operating system.
The home is now going through a similar evolution. The average home, once only having a few connected devices, now has well into the double digits ranging from appliances, security systems and IoT devices to gaming systems, mobile phones and computers. This creates a tidal wave of not only connected devices, but their related mobile software applications.
So what happens when all of these separate experiences become an issue within the home, especially with in-home connectivity demands at a high due to coronavirus?
The issue with the hyper-connected home
Although internet connectivity is a critical resource for connected devices in the home, there is a lack of visible value to users. Consumers expect things to work. But even more connected devices and assistants will be independently, relentlessly tapping into the network, and causing conflict among the ecosystem. For example, streaming 4K on a smart TV causing latency issues for cloud gaming, or a consumer not knowing what device is creating suboptimal network quality across the home.
Experience management, visibility, simplicity, and management capabilities will become increasingly important. This is because the numbers are reaching into the double digit domain and they all have different operating systems, onboarding experiences and network demands. They have to work together in real time while “competing” with the same network or Wi-Fi resources.
Where the opportunity lies
As more in-home connected apps need to be managed, someone has to be ready with a place in the value chain – and it has to go beyond connectivity and back-end operations.
Luckily, the “connectivity explosion” represents a critical opportunity in the home. The gap between the legacy connectivity play and the support necessary to support a flourishing connectivity eco-system can make the connectivity providers the de-facto home operating system for consumers. It can bring more value, intelligence and engagement to the broadband experience.
For connectivity providers specifically, it means less calls to call centers, and fewer unnecessary home visits to troubleshoot (which is especially critical at this moment in time). This means cost savings and better workforce management, even as the connected ecosystem becomes more complicated.
Who will make sense of a cluttered connected experience?
What could this look like? For starters, in the past, consumers only really engaged with their broadband when something wasn’t working. By adding an intelligence layer, value is created, which allows consumers to interact with their provider every day.
Through a home operating system, connectivity providers can give consumers easy visibility and control over experiences, as well as better security. But more importantly, smart insights about usage, important events, warnings and more. Essentially, this turns any broadband user’s home into a smart home. This can be done by leveraging AI to convert signals from connected devices within the home into actionable lifestyle and operational insights.
When we leverage intelligence this way, we achieve the next level in the connectivity revolution. Connectivity providers can have a pivotal role here if they act quickly. Otherwise, similar to what happened with mobile apps, they risk becoming nothing more than a faster pipe than enables other providers’ experiences.
To learn more, check out doxi™ HomeOS & doxi™ Router, Amdocs' AI-powered, cloud-native home operating system.