This paper presents suggestions for a more pragmatic approach to the design of emerging and future domestic communication technologies, particularly technologies destined for the home that may be deemed 'ubiquitous'. This is achieved through two critical reviews of a small number of social studies related to the design and use of existing and emerging communication technologies. The first review explores how existing, recent and emerging technologies are adopted within the domestic home and explores how social patterns dictate adoption. The second review draws more broadly on research activity related to the design and development of ubiquitous technologies for everyday life and what lessons can be learnt from them. Together, these two reviews suggest novel communication technology adoption will evolve through small imperceptible steps from the edges of existing products and services; therefore design research needs to be more aligned to this approach. To make any real impact and influence, research activity needs to move away from attempts to deliver ubiquity in the home and place more emphasis at the pragmatic, incremental level of emerging communication services and products.