Date
November 11, 2021
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From air-filtering windows to light fixtures that monitor your wellbeing, three concept collections by NewTerritory envision a human-centric approach to smart technology in the home.

UK-based creative consultancy NewTerritory has designed a collection of product concepts to explore how technology can be embedded within domestic environments in meaningful ways, especially with people working from home now more than ever.

Called Empathic Technology, the series features three future-focused wellbeing devices and architectural fixings, called Connect, Sense and Enhance, which together are intended to ‘unveil innovative forms to help us connect, sense our needs and enhance our living environment.’

“We at NewTerritory believe this new reality calls for a different approach when it comes to smart technology in the home, one that shifts from functionally smart to more emotionally smart tech,” says Hugo Jamson, Creative Director, NewTerritory.

Connect is a family of products built around a reimagined wifi router and charging surface with dispersible connected units: Tray, which is a Wifi router with a connective surface for inductive charging; Wedge, which is an omnidirectional speaker with integrated MagSafe charging connectivity; and Puck, a wifi booster with power bank and contactless charging.

Sense is a set of monitoring devices that integrate into the home to generate data and build a richer picture of our physical and mental needs. It includes a switch, a pendant, and a surface that analyse people and their surroundings using sonics, atmospherics, visual references, touch and sound.

Pendant is a suite of sensors that analyse different non-tactile qualities of us and our homes drawing together atmospheric, sonic and visual data together with ceiling light attachments designed to give new insights into how our homes can better meet our wellbeing needs

Inspired by facial features, Nose is a porous, foamed aluminium element that senses particulates, volatiles and impurities and Ear is a rotating paddle that responds to sonic cues, moving gesturally to demonstrate listening and awareness.  

Meanwhile, Eye is a glass bulb using lidar to track movement, posture, facial cues, individual or group dynamics. The ‘Surface’ rug is the final element in the series, which features multiple sensory elements that provide unique and personal health analysis such as posture, weight and gait as users move across it.

Technology is becoming more and more involved in our lives, but sometimes it can be for our physical and mental benefit. Check out Exercising transformation in the post-pandemic Gym: Seymourpowell unveils smart gym mat concept.

According to NewTerritory, the collection responds to the ever-evolving notion of “home”, which it says “has become increasingly multifunctional, whilst remaining a private temple for our physical and mental health.” 

The third and final concept product is called Enhance, which comprises a class of devices that act on sensed data, transforming and enhancing the living environment discretely and in line with ‘deep observation and analysis of our human needs’. 

It revolves around an architecturally integrated smart window frame that has sensors and active filtering technologies embedded within it to filter particulates and pollutants and actively cancel disruptive noise and light.

The concepts are intended to be representative of the studio’s three pillars that make up its philosophy: Living Cycle, Aesthetic of Purpose, and Humane Touch. Living Cycle ‘acknowledges, respects and utilises natural cycles of growth, use and decay, to inform a palette of natural or reclaimed materials’. Meanwhile, Aesthetic of Purpose ‘celebrates the inherent surface qualities of materials which use a reclaimed feedstock.’  

Finally, Humane Touch is described as ‘a humane palette with a nuance of character and haptic qualities, satisfying our need for surfaces with integrity.’

“We’re being provocative with these objects, raising questions around the role data and empathic technology will play in our lives and homes in the not so distant future,” says Jamson. “With these concepts, we’re exploring different colourations and textures that add a more humanistic element to the products.” 

“We wanted to make the objects feel like something consumers would be drawn to and want to touch, rather than a hard, sterile device. They’re domestic in their aesthetic, smart in their functionality, and humanistic in their concept.”

A future where everything in the home is ‘smart’ might not be so far away, don’t miss A smart home without all the gadgets? Kano Sense scans anything and turns it into a responsive device.

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