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December 20 2019
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Sarita

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Evolving spaces – the connected bathroom

The bathroom… a place for indulgence, relaxation and wellness. This space in the home has long been considered a tech-free zone that moves beyond functional needs and into the realms of multi-sensory experience that promotes wellbeing and alters the mood. However, over the past few years, we’ve seen an ever-increasing number of digital products entering into the bathroom space.

Consumers have become comfortable with smart and connected devices throughout their home, and the benefits they bring from cost and time saving to convenience and safety. The bathroom, however, poses certain challenges integrating such technologies, including the need for technology to be more ‘behind-the-scenes’ and considered, using voice & gesture control for hands-free interactions and elevating holistic wellbeing.

At PDD we’ve taken a look at a range of smart and connected products for the bathroom that aim to harness technology for wellness in an unobtrusive way.

Smart technology assists good oral care habits

The Oral-B Genius 9000 Electric Toothbrush is a smart toothbrush with an accompanying app that links to the users’ smartphone camera for individual feedback as they brush. The smart toothbrush guides the user through six key zones in the mouth, highlighting where they might have missed and how long they should spend in each, whilst force sensors light-up whenever pressing too hard.

Image credit: Braun

Hands-free control of your smart home from your shower

TicHome Mini from Mobvoi is a portable, splash-proof smart speaker featuring Google Assistant that provides users hands-free control of their Smart Home products from anywhere in the house;  the IPX6 rating protects it from powerful water jets for use in the shower. Its battery lasts for up to 6 hours, allowing users to take calls, schedule reminders or control music wirelessly. Set-up of the speaker has been made easy through the Google Home app and it also features ‘tap connect’ for fast Bluetooth pairing.

Image credit: Mobvoi

Presenting users a more rounded picture of their health

Fitness tracker brand Fitbit has recently released easy-to-use smart scales called Aria Air. These display user weight on-screen and sync stats wirelessly to the Fitbit app where users can see how all their activity accumulates. Key features include tracking weight, body fat percentage, BMI and lean mass, output charts, graphics, and presenting trends and progress to give users a clear picture of their health. It also automatically recognise up to 8 different users while keeping stats confidential.

Video source: Fitbit

Connected bathroom suite utilising voice control to enhance the user experience

The Verdera® Voice-Lighted Mirror by bathroom brand KOHLER is the first-to-market bathroom-lighted mirror available to consumers that has Amazon Alexa embedded. This connected mirror offers consumers the functionality of an Amazon Echo, such as playing music, shopping or receiving news and traffic updates; all integrated into a bathroom mirror; bringing technology benefits in a visually unobtrusive way.

Other smart features include built-in voice-controlled  LED lighting that can be adjusted up to 1000 lux, providing a better makeup application or grooming experience; a motion-activated night light making it easy to navigate the bathroom in the dark yet brightening to a comfortable level for handwashing. The Verdera® mirror serves as the centerpiece of the KOHLER Konnect portfolio of smart products including baths and even a smart toilet.

Image credit: KOHLER

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Posted by Sarita
Principal – Design Insight

Languages spoken: English.
The last thing that inspired me: Chinese teacups from a small café in Camden Town, London - the most amazing collection of colours and textures.
My dream project: Something multi-sensorial.
My obsession: Stationery - retro inspired, Asian influenced, graphically intriguing, sensorially indulgent and the 'unique'!

Image credit Braun, Fitbit, KOHLER, Mobvoi

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