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Smart homes are the wave of the future. That future could include more than 4 billion smart home sensors installed in homes around the world by 2022, according to ABI Research, a technology market research firm.

These sensors, ABI says, will change the way houses are built, maintained, and managed.

Sensors are embedded in a number of smart home devices and appliances, and they offer near real-time data about even slight changes in a house’s environment.

“Smart home sensors will lay the foundation for the automated smart home experience,” says Jonathan Collins, research director at ABI. “The advanced sensing capabilities will fine-tune new services and applications from home personalization to energy and security management.”

Home automation will make up the largest chunk of the U.S. smart home market by 2021, according to Statista, with revenue for that sector poised to reach more than $25.3 million by then. Security is the second most popular use for smart home systems, with a projected $22 million in revenues anticipated by 2021. Home entertainment rounds out the top three with $14.25 million in revenue anticipated over the next four years.

ABI points to the success of smart home voice control devices like Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home, and Apple’s Siri and Apple TV for the anticipated boom in the sensors market. Even so, smart home device manufacturers must leverage familiar sensor capabilities like sound, light, motion, and temperature with emerging technologies like tomographic sensing to develop intelligent control systems able to automatically react and adapt to the home environment, ABI says.

“Automated home management, grounded in sensing capabilities, has the potential to change how homes are built, owned, shared, and lived in,” says Collins. “Greater home personalization and efficiency can underpin a move to smaller, more shareable living spaces, and the builders and the real estate market are already taking note.”

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