Sangeet Sharma, Partner at Chandigarh-based architectural firm SD Sharma & Associates talks about seamlessly integrating high-tech fixtures in a smart bathroom.
When you wake up in the morning and go to the bathroom and everything starts with your voice command, it may all sound like something from movies and future also for technical people, but right now with smart technology and wide range of smart products it leads to comfort, convenience, health, efficiency and enjoyment.
The availability of technologically advanced fittings and fixtures has proved to be a game changer in washroom design. Lighting plays a crucial role in interior spaces like washroom and the availability of features like dimming, sensors and mood lighting has certainly enhanced the user experience. “I have noticed a mark difference in toilet design since I started practicing about 30 years ago. For more a functional space often shoved away in a corner, it has evolved to become a thinking den. And, technology is what has facilitated this transition. It has converted the washroom into a space for relaxation and rejuvenation,” opines Sangeet Sharma, Partner Architect, SD Sharma & Associates.
He further adds, “Things like warming drawers make your clothes warm. Similarly, smart showers, smart toilets, smart mirrors, voice activated lighting, digital faucets, smart mats, soaking tub, purifiers with endless music in shower adds to experience and releases stress. I feel that latest tech trends are more functional and utilitarian. They are designed with the user comfort and quality of life in mind.”
Nowadays, the younger generation is abreast with the latest technologies and this has helped the growing acceptance of smart technologies in the bathroom space. “Not only youngsters, these automated functionalities are also helpful for older generations. For example, the lights come out automatically when one enters the washroom at night. This has lessened the risk for accidents,” quips Sharma.
However, inclusion of these smart fixtures adds to complications and increases chance of malfunction thereby requiring regular maintenance. Most of these smart fixtures have been designed in the Western market and may not be designed to operate in Indian condition with erratic electricity and water supply. Even the quality of water in the different parts of the country varies. “To counter the problems of hard water, we are incorporating water softener in the houses. These are all sophisticated gadgets and they do require maintenance. Also, we educate our clients on how best to use these gadgets. As for the electricity, the incorporation of solar-based electricity alleviates most of the issues,” shares Sharma.