Do We Really Want Smart Homes?
Marketeers are all set to make 2015 the year of the smart home as the technology industry is all set for a big push on everything from smart heating to fridges. Now while many people are falling over themselves to add yet more gadgets into their collection in order to make their lives easier, I have to wonder if they are making the smart choice.
We all know industries have a poor record of acting in consumers bests interests when share holders are screaming out for more profits. You don't have to look far to find evidence of this the UK energy companies are currently under fire for not passing savings back onto customers after several years of over inflation price hikes.
With Smart technology in our homes the temptation for companies to manipulate our spending will be overwhelming. Lets just say you buy a samsung smart fridge which can place your shopping orders for you and possibly shop around to find the best deals for you. It all sounds great but I don't think it will be long until samsung is striking up deals with supermarkets or even food manufacturers themselves to sell you more of what they want you to have, rather than what you really want.
Then there is the issue of Data companies pay big money to get their hands on your information do you really want your fridge passing it on to samsung to be sold to the highest bidder.
so whats wrong with samsung knowing I had an extra chocolate pudding rather than a banana? you might ask. Well nothing until you realise that information has been sold on to a company that will then go out of it's way to target you with dieting adverts and chocolate pudding adverts in an attempt to manipulate your spending habits and limit your choices.
But For me the most worrying aspect of all these smart devices is the longterm effect they are going to have on the economy as devices and appliances do more for us the less people are going to be needed by companies like Asda/Wallmart who would much rather have a computer take your payment than a checkout assistant. How long until we see traditional supermarkets closing in favour of distribution centers (Just like tescos "Dark Supermarkets") with a handful of pickers processing thousands of orders.
Image Credit » http://pixabay.com/en/holiday-house-summer-house-home-177401/