Disliked smart homes have all gone to Xianyu APP---- A second-hand trading platform in China

Issuing time:2023-06-16 11:29

Guide: Due to its broad development prospects, the smart home track has attracted many internet players and major technology companies to enter the game. However, as far as the current situation is concerned, the experience brought by many smart home products to users is still limited, and even many users choose to transfer the smart home items you have already bought to the second-hand trading platform; the real smart home seems to have not yet fully arrived.

The double 11 in 2022 has come to an end, and one category has been on a roller coaster, and it is smart home.

On the first night of Double 11 promotion, several smart home brands announced their top sales reports. But just after Double 11, some "explosive" products appeared on second-hand trading platforms such as Xianyu APP at the fastest speed.

Smart home is a lazy business, but if the "lazy" thinks this product is too "troublesome", it is very diligent to change hands.

Among the treasures that have been changed hands for "money", there are sweeping robots, smart refrigerators, smart toilets, etc. that everyone has heard of, as well as some less familiar smart curtains, smart gateways, hosts...

The former is a "smart single item"; the latter involves an upgraded version of smart life described by manufacturers, "whole house smart" equipment.

When you go out, you often worry that the door is unlocked or the electrical appliances are not turned off. When you go home, you want to turn on the lights and air conditioner in advance. In the manufacturer's propaganda, as long as the smart home is installed, those tedious operations can be solved at one time. Moreover, the whole house smart home used to cost more than 100,000 sets, but now the "price has been reduced" to 10,000 to 20,000 sets, which has made many users tempted when they renovate their houses or renovate their old ones.

There are many choices of brands, equipment, and price points for smart single items. Whole house intelligence also involves platforms, protocols, control methods, front-loading or after-installation, wired or wireless, which not only dazzles consumers, but even senior practitioners describe this when working in the industry, it is inevitable to use "chaotic" and "difficult" to describe it.

The smart home track of Smash Bros., because of the huge potential market space, is attracting the Internet and technology giants, traditional home appliance manufacturers, and new entrepreneurial forces. But the real smart home is still far away from us. Some smart home practitioners concluded that what traditional home appliance manufacturers launch is "pseudo-intelligence", while technology companies and new entrepreneurial forces come up with "weak intelligence". "Today, these are paid by the user, and tomorrow, it will be more difficult for the user to place an order for the whole house."

Disliked smart home items

Jiang Zirui, who lives in Beijing, once resold a sweeping robot, and recently she is reselling a smart curtain. Many consumers, like her, start with smart home items, and then slowly try small-scale smart home scenarios.

Within the smart home industry, this represents the first two phases. The first stage, that is, the single-item stage, is more typical of sweeping robots, smart toilets, and smart speakers with a single usage scenario. In the second stage, a small-scale smart home scene will be developed. For example, in the kitchen, the equipment linkage between the gas stove and the range hood, and in the bedroom, use smart speakers to control curtains, air conditioners, and air purifiers.

It has evolved to the third stage, which is so-called whole-house intelligence, also known as whole-house intelligence.

However, no matter what stage of "smart" home it is, it will inevitably be rejected by consumers.

Let’s first look at the “regular customers” on the second-hand trading platform, such as sweeping robots and smart toilets. These are all items in the first stage.

Muzi from Hubei bought a sweeping robot for ¥2,000. The pitfalls she summed up are that she often can’t find the charger, dregs fall off when sweeping the floor, carpets on the ground can’t be swept or the dust box falls out. Take the charger away or it will wind up.

Jiang feels that smart toilets are also overrated. A smart toilet she bought for about ¥3,500 was working normally at first, but it didn't take long for it to fail, and the lid couldn't be turned over automatically, and the seat couldn't be heated. After asking the customer service, she found out that the waterproof level of this smart toilet is relatively low, and it is the water entering the movement that causes the function to fail.

Yang Zhen, a senior practitioner of smart home, added to Shenran that smart toilets and sweeping robots are all single items that can enhance the experience of users when used independently, so they are relatively popular. Many of the current "slots" are problems caused by limitations in the early stage of industry development and high costs.

Also "disliked" are various home appliances with networking functions, such as smart washing machines, smart microwave ovens, and smart refrigerators. According to Qi Xuliang, being in charge of a certain smart home brand, it is difficult for him to distinguish this kind of home appliances through the product. It is the first or second stage of smart home depends mainly on whether the product is single-use or combined with other devices in a certain scene.

Some consumers told Shenran that most of the home appliances currently on the market are smart products connected to the internet, with few choices and low prices, so they only buy them. Another part of consumers wants to experience the smart home of the old home appliance giant.

Huang Lanlan, who lives in Guangzhou, spent more than ¥40,000 on an all-in-one washer-dryer and induction range hood from a traditional home appliance brand. Her evaluation was, "It doesn't work at all, it's purely an IQ tax."

The self-proclaimed AI smart-controlled all-in-one washing and drying machine with a price of tens of thousands lies in the fact that you can choose different washing methods on the mobile APP, and there will be a reminder after it dries. The intelligence of the range hood lies in the fact that it is equipped with two sensors, which can be sensed by waving hands when cooking. In Huang Lanlan's view, "This is still manual control rather than intelligence, and it is not fundamentally different from turning on the range hood with a button.

"Such typical smart home appliances include refrigerators with screens and sweepers with screens." Yang Zhen concluded that the core is to connect to the Internet, but to complicate the experience for the sake of intelligence. Usage habits do not match. In his view, traditional home appliance manufacturers represented by Haier and Midea have a certain brand awareness among consumers, but the problem is that smart homes are made with the logic of "selling appliances", and the layout is also kitchens and bathrooms.

"To buy home appliances of different brands, you need to download their respective APP. They cannot be linked with each other, and the experience is very fragmented." Jiang Zirui said to Shenran.

Manufacturer fight, who will pay?

Although we separate the three stages of smart home, no matter it is a different stage or a major school, in the consumer smart home market with a low penetration rate, they all influence each other and complement each other.

The smart home products that "started" early have now formed a market pattern in some domestic subdivision tracks. According to Dong Xiaoya, CIC Consulting Manager, in the subdivision of sweeping robots, the leading player is Cobos, followed by Stone Technology and Cloud Whale; the smart speaker track is dominated by Ali, Baidu, and Xiaomi.

However, traditional home appliance manufacturers that have stepped into the smart home scene, technology companies and new entrepreneurial forces that are leaning towards the smart home, are still in a "chaotic" battle as a whole. The common problem facing them is that it is difficult for users to pay. In addition to experience, price, and concerns about privacy and security, ecological richness is also a factor for some users to calmly wait and see.

Yang Zhen told Shenran that to make a smart home, the first thing is to choose a platform. The selection criteria are whether there are enough devices on the existing platform, and whether there is room for upgrading software and hardware after installation; the second is to choose to join this platform. Just like buying a smartphone, you need to choose the system first, whether to use the Android system or the iOS system. Generally speaking, the more influential the platform, the more brands will join.

Currently common smart home platforms include Xiaomi’s Mijia, Huawei’s HiLink, Aqara’s AqaraHome, and Apple’s Homekit. Among them, Xiaomi and Huawei have been building ecology and standards from the beginning; Aqara Green Rice and Tuya Smart, etc., although they entered the whole house smart earlier, they basically rely on their own research and development capabilities to build ecology.

According to Yang Zhen, there are certain obstacles to the interconnection and interoperability between cross-brand and cross-category equipment and systems no matter which ecology is at present, and the industry's calls for unified standard protocols are getting louder and louder.

The Matter standard open to the outside world by the CSA Alliance (Connectivity Standards Alliance) has high expectations from many people. But he reminded that Amazon, Apple, Google, Samsung and many other manufacturers have expressed their participation, but in the end, consumers may still need to install multiple apps to control. He made an analogy, just like many mobile phone manufacturers use the Android system, but they also customize their own systems.

From this dimension, technology companies seem to have an absolute advantage. However, Yang Zhen believes that the biggest market obstacle for the whole house intelligence is not the ecology, but the lack of manufacturers themselves and professional talents. These two factors directly determine the last step in the implementation of smart home, which is related to the current consumer perception of smart home.

Manufacturers simplify smart homes and regard semi-finished smart homes as many high-tech selling points, but after user experience, they find that the whole house smart, which costs tens of thousands, does not really make life smarter, and it is difficult to pay for it.

The development of China's smart home market is usually divided into four stages: networking, sceneization, perception and autonomy. More than one practitioner mentioned that mainstream manufacturers are in the first two stages, and some manufacturers stay in the first stage, emphasizing equipment networking and switch control.

The biggest headache for manufacturers is probably the lack of professional talents. "Universities do not have this major, and consumer-grade smart homes have only started in the past two years." According to Yang Zhen's observation, the key point is the store sales and services for consumers.

Mainstream manufacturers are accelerating the deployment of offline experience stores for Whole House Smart. However, he told Shenran that smart homes have very strong attributes of home building materials, but mainstream manufacturers generally use 3C digital business logic to do business. Although store sales, program design and other personnel are "on duty" after a complete set of training from the brand, most of them lack practical experience and experience in home building materials. Manufacturers can do what they teach. Understanding stays at the theoretical level.

When Shenran visited the store, many consumers said that after the introduction of the store sales, they still could not understand the operation logic of the whole house intelligence. Some consumers mentioned that they went to offline stores for consultation with a curious attitude, but were persuaded by the professionalism shown by the salesman, "I have many questions that the salesman can't answer."

Even users who have already placed an order say that there is a gap between their experience and expectations. According to Jiang Zirui, he was moved by the official advertising screen at the beginning, but after using it, he felt that it was too early to say a real whole-house smart home.

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