The buildings and construction account for around 30-40% of global energy use and energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. Because of this, the per square-foot energy efficiency of buildings needs to improve by around 30% in order to meet the Paris Agreement environmental targets. By 2060, it is expected that the total buildings sector’s footprint will have doubled – reaching around 230bn square-meters.
This forecast examines the value of smart building technology globally, covering the proportion of the hardware that can be directly attributed to smart buildings, the associated software and management platform services, and installation and management related consulting. It does not try to forecast the total value created by the technology, nor the installation and upkeep revenues. That would be such a large number that it would not be useful.
In terms of market variation, we expect North America and Europe West to be the strongest initial market, with parts of APAC (China, Japan, South Korea) making up for the rest of that region’s low adoption. This is a pretty similar story to many of our other IoT forecasts, and there is not really reason to think that this one will be markedly different.
This is a trend that is going to take longer to emerge too, and we expect the years immediately after the forecast period to post some impressive growth. We foresee this market being more gradual than the explosive growth curves seen in other IoT markets, but due to its potential size, this slower penetration is not to be seen in a negative light.
To this end, if you want to use smart building technologies to save costs or increase margins, the main use case you should be targeting is human productivity. While the technologies can certainly help manage operating costs, such as energy bills, or provide improved services such as secure access or usage analytics, on a per-dollar basis, these should not be the priority targets for new installations.
In most instances, no matter how you slice it, when you look at the costs of occupying a building in terms of square-meters, human capital is almost always the largest single component. The factors were natural light, good air and ventilation, temperature controls, views, and green spaces. The following increases in productivity could be achieved by making better use of the factors: better lighting (23% increase), access to green natural spaces (18%), improved ventilation (11%), and individual temperature control (3%).