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Care For Company? Alexa Now In Bathrooms

Artificial empowered scales and connected toilets have made their way into our most private spaces – the bathroom.

And you can thank Kohler Co., Toto Ltd. for it – they’ve begun outfitting bathrooms with sensors, artificial intelligence and smart speakers into their products – many of which on display at this years’ CES in Las Vegas.

The products are, however, still very pricey – with some set to cost you thousands of dollars if you wish to have an automated weather update while you shower.

But the premium products can also be used for health purposes, with one bathmat having sensors embedded inside that capture data on a person’s weight and posture for analysis.

(Photo: Kohler)

The other product on display was a smart toilet programmed with an Amazon Alexa smart speaker.

As intrusive as these devices seem, a senior analyst at International Data Corp. who covers smart home research says that consumers are more likely to integrate smart technology into their homes if the companies emphasise user privacy and are transparent about how data is collected and used.

But Kohler insists their sure consumers want easy information from the bathroom because of how often they use it.

‘At a high level, the thought process of bringing Alexa into the bathroom is every consumer starts their day in the bathroom and they end their day in the bathroom, typically. So it is a really great place for access to information—so think weather, news, traffic, all those things Alexa does,’ Jonathan Bradley, a product manager for Kohler’s smart home team, told The Wall Street Journal.

Kohler displayed its $10,000 Numi 2.0 Intelligent Toilet at CES in Las Vegas, which embodies the familiar throne.

Shaped like a futuristic, glowing box, it’s equipped with an automated square lid and lighting that runs around the base and back panel, illuminating the entire toilet.

The Numi 2.0 features a proximity sensor that senses when a person approaches it and automatically raises its lid. Likewise, a pressure sensor on the seat detects when someone stands and triggers a flush.

But it also comes with an app that enables personalisation of the toilet’s bidet wand position and the colour of the lighting.

The smart toilet is also embedded with Amazon Alexa, enabling voice control of the toilet alongside playing music or delivering news and weather reports. It also enables the user to control other devices within the home.

The Numi 2.0 will be available later in the year. The DTV+ shower system is available now for around US $4,000.

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