BroadbandOpportunities to provide tech support are growing in the U.S. as home network routers are installed in more homes, according to a new whitepaper by Parks Associates and Support.com. Seventy-eight percent of U.S. broadband households have a home network router and that’s driving demand for tech support, according to “Expanding to the Home Network: The Evolution of Premium Support.”

Parks and Support.com forecast that the percentage of U.S. broadband households with home networks will increase to 95% by 2016, each with an average 4.5 connected devices running. While home network connectivity enhances the capabilities of all devices, it also poses challenges in the way of setup and troubleshooting, the companies note.

“The adoption of connected devices and usage of high-bandwidth applications add new layers of complexity for the consumer,” Parks’ research analyst Patrice Samuels commented in a press release.

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“Nearly 75% of consumers set up new devices on their own, but one-half indicate they would prefer assistance with future acquisitions. Adding new connected devices changes the dynamic of the home network and increases consumers’ need for professional assistance.”

Parks found that online movies and TV shows are watched in nearly 50% of broadband households, with videos being watched on a smarpthone or tablet in 25%. Other high-bandwidth applications, such as video calls and interactive games “can create network performance problems, which will drive consumers to seek more comprehensive tech support options,” according to the market research firm.

“Consumers are increasingly dependent on connected devices, and customer experience is increasingly driven by the ability of devices to seamlessly connect to each other and the Internet,” Support.com’s vice president, product management and corporate marketing James Morehead elaborated.

“The complexity of home networking has created opportunities for companies to deepen customer engagement and create new revenue streams through premium technology support services.”

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