PRODUCTS | Smart home

Smart retailing Caple C2600

pyrolytic oven from the Caple Sense Premium collection

in different types of lighting will enhance a big cooking session through to downtime with the family, so kitchen designers need to become lighting experts too – both decoratively and operatively.”

Scavolini is embracing the connected home with Dandy Plus, its new smart kitchen, living room and bathroom collection.According to the brand, it is the first furniture designed with built-in Amazon Alexa, so consumers will be able to ‘talk’ to their homes. In the bathroom, having a smart speaker to play music or control the lights or any other compatible devices is a bonus when you need to be hands free.

Blum too, at this year’s digital Interzum event, showcased two specific examples of how electricity can be used in furniture: illuminated pull-outs and a USB-C port. Product manager Fabian Längle explains the concepts. “Light in furniture serves two different purposes: one functional, as the contents of the pull-outs are well-lit and visible, and one emotional, as the atmospheric background lighting creates decorative effects. The power connection Blum had installed in the drawer back is an extremely versatile interface. The company relies here on the widely used USB-C standard, allowing many smart devices to be charged where they are being kept, be they smartphones, tablets or laptops, but also potentially battery-powered kitchen utensils or electric shavers. Wireless charging would also be possible in the future by integrating charging pads.”

Smart water

In the bathroom, there aren’t many new launches to speak of, however, this is an area where a greater focus on safety and hygiene is driving smart innovation by bathroom brands.


Touchless technology such as infrared sensors have started to make its way from the commercial to the domestic setting, while high tech shower toilets, once seen a luxury, are becoming more commonplace.

Geberit has responded to the demand for more hygienic, touchless products with a range of sensor activated taps and flush plates, such as the Sigma80 plate, This is activated with the simple wave of a hand which eliminates the need for any surface contact, thus reducing the spread of bacteria.

Sarah Hillsdon, category manager

Novy Panoramic downdraft extractor

David Graham, the founder of London-based smart home integration specialist Grahams, explains why it’s best to team up with a specialist and why you should never skimp on smart products…

We would always recommend that a retailer with little or no experience in this field, find a local specialist to team up with. The best place to find a list of high-quality smart home integrators would be the Cedia (Custom Electronics Design Installation Association) website. This is a certified list of accredited smart home retailers and installers who can work with clients and other trades to specify, supply and install high quality systems and provide an excellent level of service.

Going for the cheapest of any type of product can always cause

problems, but especially when technology is involved. The cheaper products infrequently integrate with external systems meaning that you have multiple interfaces, the built-in interfaces they have are poor and do not carry some features you might think of as fundamental. Lighting is an example of where higher performance fittings and

control can make an appreciable difference with lower quality LED lights not being dimmable and flickering, along with having a significant reduction in lifespan. Proper specification of equipment and good control of a system can really enhance someone’s day-to- day happiness. Getting this right takes time and expertise, which a quality integrator – who can plan with the right equipment – can do.

Samsung RS8000

for Geberit bathroom products and installation systems notes that “there has also been a huge increase in the popularity of washing with water, which has seen Geberit’s AquaClean shower toilet become a real ‘game-changer’”. Many manufacturers have recognised the value of the shower toilet and Laufen has recently introduced a new model - the Cleanet Riva. Offering complete cleaning and freshness, users operate the WC using the simple rotary button located

on the side of the bowl or via a touchscreen remote control that communicates with the user, providing additional settings and personal preferences. The user can create up to four customised settings and the touch screen control provides more choice, including various spray modes, based on pressure, temperature and timing.

Showers too have had the tech treatment and Grohe, with its Rainshower SmartConnect 310

Family Hub American Style Fridge Freezer

shower head, promises a unique, connected shower experience. Users can choose between two different spray settings via a Bluetooth connected remote control puck: the relaxing Rain spray and the powerful, invigorating Jet spray. There is also the option to combine both sprays for a luxurious, spa-inspired experience,

· October 2021

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