US-based IT research organisation the Yankee Group has delivered a pointer for retailers to one of the next great consumer rushes by releasing recent survey results on the future of home networking.
Claiming to have conducted "the most comprehensive survey ever" on the topic, the Boston-based organisation declared 37 per cent of PC households were interested in home networking.
Some 68 per cent of the 2000 sampled had two or more family members regularly using the Net and reported instances where that had occurred at the same time.
As the costs come down, Yankee Group foresees "pent-up demand" for improved bandwidth, multi-access and networked home environments.
But it is "the right mix of products" that consumers are after, according to Karuna Uppal, Yankee Group Home Networking senior analyst.
He feels "the market for home networking will depend on the development of compelling applications, consumer education on benefits, and the availability of easy-to-use and install, cost-effective solutions".
Yankee Group claimed survey respondents were interested in "sharing dial-up or high-speed Internet access, printer sharing, sharing of video and audio content, and multi-user gaming.