Where Smart Home Technology Meets Architecture
The way that we work and live is changing, with advancements in accessibility of technology impacting the way architects and designers are thinking about future homes. Flexible working, co-working spaces and co-living accommodation are blurring the lines between home, work and leisure spaces and architects are innovating in their use of smart home technology to meet the needs of these transformational trends.
Dot Architects, for example, has developed the Baitasi House of the Future for tech company Whaley in Beijing, China. The 30m2 wood-framed house offers four different layout options that can shift according to the needs of residents; for example, changing from a three-bedroom house to a small office. The moveable walls are operated by a smart TV, via a customised Android system, which also controls lighting modes, curtains, security alarm and other home appliances.
“The lifestyles of young people are constantly changing that is why the layout of a house should be adaptive,” explains Duo Ning, the design director and founder of Dot Architects. “People will shift between work, social and private life more smoothly than now. A place to sleep and eat could also be a place to work and party.”
The team used the open-source WikiHouse system to build the house because it would create a lightweight and digitally fabricated building. While technology is at the core of the building’s design, the practice believes that technology should serve people, not the other way around, so the focus is on the house being “warm and cosy with the all the tech hidden behind”.
Another example is Renault’s Symbioz concept, arguably the most advanced vision for the future of mobility and how a car can integrate into home life.
The concept comprises a vehicle integrated with a specially designed home. On the road, the electric, autonomous, connected car becomes an extension of the home, which can be transformed into an entertainment space offering a virtual reality experience.
The connected house was designed for Renault by Paris-based Marchi Architectes using the same architecture and materials as the car. The interior has been designed to look like a living room and the car is parked inside on a platform which can be raised up from the ground floor to the bedroom, or rooftop terrace, on the first floor to become a cabin with a view.
“Renault Symbioz shows how we may combine the car with the home,” explains Stéphane Janin, director of concept cars design. “The car becomes a new mobile, multi-purpose living space for the whole family and can be used – open or closed – more fully, even when parked.”
This is an excerpt from our in-depth feature exploring innovative smart home technologies. To read the full article, follow the link below to our free magazine.