As average selling prices continue to drop on most products, many retailers are focusing on full solution sales: packaging a group of products and services that solve customers’ problems or improve their overall lifestyles.
Some of those solutions include wired/wireless home networks; connected entertainment PCs; network and PC security; lighting, whole-home, entertainment control and automation; IP-based security systems. Retailers might consider eventually adding another solution to their offerings: digital home healthcare, also known as e-healthcare or telemedicine. In its most simple form, digital healthcare refers to broadband-connected in-home health monitoring tools and devices that offer improved medial care at lower costs.
That market is still very much in its infancy, but it’s quickly gaining attention and could play an important role in retail sales. Parks Associates, the Dallas-based digital home research firm, recently increased its focus on the market and has added a “digital health” newsletter and section to its Web site (http://www.parksassociates.com/digitalhealth/index.htm) that’s worth a visit. Parks estimates the domestic digital home health market will grow at an average annual rate of 36 percent, hitting $2.1 billion by 2010.