With all that technology can do to improve our lives, you will be hard-pressed to find a space in the home without the presence of technological innovations. The bathroom is no exception. However, as Kohler’s Smart Home Innovation Lead, Jonathan Bradley, explained at this year’s CES, the company is not concerned with implementing “tech just for tech’s sake.” In fact, the company’s vision is to provide “moments made better.”
The smart home is changing our lives, Bradley acknowledged. Consumers are looking for convenience in addition to cleanliness. “We start and end our day in the bathroom,” he added. “We should walk into he bathroom and have the toilet open and have it interact and provide information.”
High-tech Bathroom Experiences
The Innate Intelligent Toilet seat provides this. It includes a heated seat, auto open and close, intuitive remote, blow dryer, gravity flush and personal bidet functionality. Further, as many homeowners look for more DIY projects, Innate features Kohler’s ready-lock installation.
The touchless bathroom faucet offers hands-free activation, addressing a common concern in recent times of spreading bacteria and germs in the space. Kohler launches an integrated faucet with embedded sensors as well as a remote “puck” that allows for a retrofit solution add-on to any Kohler single-control bathroom faucet.
The Escape Bathroom will be appealing to consumers who are looking for that spa experience at home. Reminiscent of Japanese soaking baths, the Stillness Bath features water, light, fog and aromas. Completing the spa atmosphere, is the infinity overflow feature which sends water into the Hinoki wood moat. Full spectrum lighting surrounds the bath, creating a chromatherapy experience. Fog envelops the surface of the Stillness Bath and essential oils can be added into the bath’s experience tower.
Water Usage Monitoring
As people become more invested in their homes, they should have the opportunity to build the smart home they want, Bradley asserted. This includes not only the ability to control lighting and music, but also to monitor water usage, a growing consumer concern.
In the kitchen, you will find Kohler Konnect voice-activated and touchless kitchen faucets. You can eliminate the use of a measuring cup by using Alexa to ask the faucet to dispense the desired amount of water, while also monitoring water usage. The ceiling-mounted faucet features a “puck” mounted to the counter.
The kitchen faucets now offer a “wash hand” command that walks consumers through the recommended steps for proper handwashing, activating the water for wetting and rinsing, along with audible guides for lathering and cleaning.
Kohler also will launch two co-branded products with Phyn in 2021 – the Kohler Whole Home Water Monitor Powered by Phyn – a DIY unit and a Pro version with an automatic shut off. Both products include Phyn’s patented pressure wave analysis to monitor water flow to immediately notify a homeowner if a leak is detected and to provide detailed insights into how each fixture uses water.
The DIY version mounts under a single sink and can be easy installed by a homeowner. The Pro variation is installed at a water main, either inside or outside the home, and can mitigate costly damage through an automatic water shutoff feature.
Additionally, the Kohler OnCue® Plus Generator Management System will now be available with additional voice control with a new OnCue Plus action on Google and a new OnCue Plus skill on Amazon Alexa to help homeowners control their Kohler standby generators from anywhere with their voice.
Stephanie is the Senior Managing Editor for Connected Design.