The Most Popular Outdoor Technology Isn’t What You’d Expect

The first-ever CE Pro Outdoor Technology Study reports 23% yearly growth in exterior installations. See the most popular technology, frequently used brands and end-user cost for outdoor projects in 2016.


Integrators might need to start stocking sunblock in their inventory. That’s because they are spending quite a bit of time in the sun performing outdoor installations as the market for extending technology outside the home continues to grow.

According to the 2017 CE Pro State of the Industry Study, outdoor technology is the seventh-fastest growing product category.

So, for the first time ever, CE Pro is specifically gauging the outdoor installation market via the 2017 CE Pro Outdoor Technology Study. The study was conducted in February and had 223 responses.

One of the more surprising takeaways is that video surveillance cameras are the most popular outdoor technology, with 54 percent of outdoor jobs including this category. This is followed by under-eave audio loudspeakers, outdoor access points, flat-panel TVs and mounts.

Outdoor Technology Study Takeaways:

  • The median custom installation company performed nine outdoor installations in 2016.
  • The median cost for an outdoor project in 2016 was $6,920.
  • Nearly half of integrators (48 percent) report that their outdoor installations grew in 2016 compared with  the year before.
  • Among those who reported an increase in their outdoor business, the average growth rate was 23 percent.
  • The hottest regions for outdoor technology installations in 2016 were (in order): the Middle Atlantic, New England, South Atlantic and Pacific Coast. More than half of all integrators in each region reported growth in their exterior installation business.
  • Three out of every four outdoor installations (75 percent) are extended zones added to an interior audio, video or networking installation.
  • Weatherproof cable integrity and conduit are the biggest challenges dealers face with outdoor projects, followed by proper equipment placement, contractor coordination (namely landscapers) and corrosion problems on equipment.

See the top brands, geographic breakdowns, the most commonly installed equipment in audio, video, exterior lighting, networking and surveillance, and much more in the photo gallery here.

33 hot products for your next outdoor project »

About the Author

Jason Knott
Jason Knott:

Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald's Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990, serving as editor and publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California.