From the "Alexa" spree to mops that self-clean your home, lights that sync up with music, and smart security, the offer for smart home gadgets has been growing steadily. Not only do they make our daily lives easier, but they also look cool. Who wouldn't want a bot that answers our every command?
In this slogging thread, the HN team discusses the next big thing in smart home gadgets and what new technology they'd like to see available for purchase.
This Slogging thread by Mónica Freitas, Limarc Ambalina, Ellen Stevens and Jack Boreham occurred in slogging's official #technology channel, and has been edited for readability.
There are dozens of smart home gadgets nowadays, some more useful than others, but the demand keeps growing. What do you think will be the next mainstream home gadget that'll drive every "adult" excited?
So I just got a Roomba and believe the hype… it is worth it. I can control it with my Alexa device so I can just say “Alexa tell [name of roomba] to start cleaning” or “Alexa tell Roomba to go home”. It’s so awesome
You don’t know the amount of dust that collects on your floor until you have a Roomba to pick it all up 😄
That one I get! It saves you tons of time, and you have your own little bot to command! Every kid's dream 😂 Which invention do you think we'll have next? A gadget that gives us our clothes cleaned, dried, and ready to wear? An outfit picker as we'd see in the 90s movies? A self-cleaning garbage can?
I think an important one that I’d like to see is a security bot. There’s already a company gaining traction called Knightscope and I’d like to see similar bots or at least AI smart security cameras I could put outside my homes.
But to be honest a bot would be better.
Criminals are used to seeing cameras but a little guard bot at your front and back door is a stronger deterrent.
Limarc Ambalina I looked Knightscope up, and I can see how it can be a great bot for surveillance, though I'm not sure it can have a more protective role in a household. How does it deter criminals? If it had a taser function, it could be beneficial for many people, even businesses, but it could also be considered a liability in case of malfunction. Jack Boreham what do you think? What will be the next big home gadget?
Even just the presence itself Mónica. A camera is one thing, a bot that moves around and can react to your presence is a much bigger deterrent than a camera.
But I think the main uses of these bots are to guard the area and alert the police or security guards immediately when they see intruders.
I can see how having a bot that automatically detects intruders and alerts authorities can be beneficial. I'd be interesting to see a study on how criminality levels are affected by the presence of bots in high crime areas. I've found this article measuring the pros and cons of home security bots and a few of the options available on the market: https://www.covesmart.com/blog/home-security-robot-can-robots-protect-your-home/
It appears that this is a growing market as there's already quite the offer available on home security bots: https://top-10-drones.com/5-top-home-security-robots/
Jack Boreham, Ellen Stevens, Amy Shah. How about you? What do you think will be the next big thing on smart home gadgets?
Delivery drones for all.
Probably personal humanoid robots as previously mentioned, but that's still a ways away.
A system like Alexa that is further incorporated with home systems. But I'm way too paranoid to ever get anything like that.
Mónica Freitas, yeah, all of the above. Ideally, something where you can use your phone to control your house, such as the lights, heating, etc., all from a click of a button. I know there is some stuff like that on the market, but not an all-encompassing app. Obviously. I want humanoid robots, oh and holographic stuff, similar to the Star Wars Jedi Council. 😂
Ellen Stevens DELIVERY DRONES! YES! That'd be amazing! No longer having to wait on the mailman or lost packages because of address mix-ups. Still, some would discuss hacking to discourage this - stolen property could scare some people off.
Ellen Stevens, To be honest, humanoid bots kinda scare me, but I'd love to have an Alexa. It'd be a huge time saver. And it's your personal butler, ahah!
Jack Boreham You got me on holographic. Image a room where you could enter, choose the "world" you wish to enter and have it brought to you through holograms? It'd be similar to VR but without needing to have anything attached to yourself. It's probably a bit far-fetched for today's reality, but I wish it to be true.
I don't know if you could call it a home gadget, but I'm sure drones will be here in the next 10 years. Amazon will be using them for sure as soon as legislation allows it.
Jack Boreham Amazon Alexa is almost that all-encompassing app but it's kinda scary to let one company control your entire house, lol.
Limarc Ambalina I'm sure Amazon is on top of that, but it will be years until we have a considerable number of countries giving a green flag to that. Which countries do you see it get implemented first?
Most likely the United States! They’ve had decently loose laws around AI and self-driving cars. I assume that looseness will follow drone regulations.
Limarc Ambalina Agree! If not in every state, some are going to accept it in a heartbeat.