Disability news

Smart Home highlights how tech can support disabled people round the home

Inside the show room with a sofa and table

A show home has been transformed into a house with state-of-the-art technology to transform the lives of disabled people.

Visitors to the property on Sunderland’s Leechmere Industrial Estate will see for themselves how features such as a vacuum run by artificial intelligence, voice-controlled lights and a refillable dog bowl could make the world of difference to those who need that extra bit of help around the home.

There are also pairs of curtains which are controlled by a smart speaker and a stair lift.

It may seem very high-tech and futuristic, but most of the technology found in the smart home is already part of tech found in items already available on the high street and operated by Alexa.

An AI vacuum cleaner and refillable dog bowl

An AI vacuum cleaner and refillable dog bowl

The home, developed by Sunderland City Council adult services team and Sunderland Care and Support, will be used by occupational therapists and technologists to test drive new innovations and a training base to teach teams on how to use assistive technology.

Linsey Proud, occupational therapy team manager, told BBC News: “The technology is ever-developing and it’s been amazing watching the house go from a shell to a place where we can demonstrate what is available for our customers in a real home environment that doesn’t feel clinical.

“It was important from the outset that the home was as real as possible, that it was just like a normal home and uses technology that we can easily get hold of.”

[ There are an estimated 300 million smart homes in the world. ]

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