Smart appliance manufacturers are perplexed as to why the vast majority of their customers never connect their devices to the internet. LG Electronics, for example, stated that less than half of the smart appliances it has sold remain connected to the internet.
The manufacturers believe it is because their customers do not understand the advantages of having a propane grill reboot in the middle of preparing dinner to apply a new firmware update.
LG suspects that users are not signing up to send their data to the manufacturers due to the difficulty of connecting the devices to the internet, rather than an inherent distrust of the Internet of Things.
“The challenge is that a consumer doesn’t see the true value that manufacturers see in terms of how that data can help them in the long run. So, they don’t really care for spending time to just connect it,” Henry Kim, US director of LG’s smart device division ThinQ, said.
Whirlpool, another appliance manufacturer, claims that it is losing a large revenue stream as a result of people not connecting their toaster ovens and signing up for a servicing subscription, presumably for a low monthly payment. This is happening despite the fact that customers can choose whether or not to share their data with the company.
The concerned manufacturers believe that the shortage of customers is not because of the numerous data breaches of IoT databases, nor because many companies appear to abandon support for the appliances after a few short years, resulting in no more security updates when yet another vulnerability is discovered.
The sources for this piece include an article in ArsTechnica.