Amazon is Developing a Home Robot

According to Bloomberg reports, Amazon’s looking to build a home robot. Its hardware division, Lab126, is apparently working on some sort of domestic droid, code-named “Vesta” after the Roman goddess of the hearth, home and family. It seems the project has been a long time coming but recently Amazon ramped up hiring engineers  with robotic skills. The household robot could be trialed in employees’ homes later this year and sold to consumers as soon as 2019.

It’s not really a surprise that robots will be coming to the home. Despite the growth of smart appliances, consumers have been slow to adopt due to the price, length of a lifecycle and question of value.

The robots are coming | KitchAnn Style

According to Natalia Andrievskaya, global director for major appliances at GfK, the market has shifted from a push to a pull in recent years, however, “consumers are unclear how to identify the value of [smart] product features, many of which seem aspirational rather than useful.”

So this makes the idea of a friendly robot rolling around your home a lot more plausible. Hotels and resorts have been implementing robots and AI for a while now.  Many believe the hotel industry will lead the way in human-robot interaction and future robot design.

Robots for the Home | KitchAnn Style
Savioke’s Relay robots makes secure deliveries during peak hours and locates Wi-Fi  and LTE signal problems.

Starting this fall Pepper the robot will start a trial as a care-giving robot. truthfully, there aren’t enough workers to meet the demands of the skyrocketing number of elderly people needing care and companionship around the world.

Robots for the Home | KitchAnn Style
Japanese families have already adopted Pepper into the family

Amazon may be one of the first prominent tech companies to seriously embark on the quest for a domestic robot, but the tech giant already has competition.

What is VUX technology for the kitchen?

Robots for the Home | KitchAnn Style

Kuri the Home Robot received good reviews from the 2018 CES show.  With funding from Bosch’s Startup Platform, Mayfield Robotics has been able to offer a robot for $899 that offers pet-like companionship.

For the future, designers will be challenged to create spaces that are compatible to robot movements. Not only will the robot need to navigate the home, it will also need to successfully maneuver around piles of laundry, school backpacks and sleeping pets.

Robots for the Home | KitchAnn Style
LG Styler

Storage will be another design consideration designers will have to face. Where will these robots recharge? Will they be stored next to other machines such as this LG Styler or the Japanese robot that folds laundry?

Robots for the Home | How will robots move from space to space?

Another obstacle I see will be the future need for electronic doors triggered by Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or motion sensors. Homes are not currently wired for electronic doors and adding battery packs may be too cumbersome an obstacle for many homeowners to overcome just to make a small area robot accessible.  But, for the early adopters who can drop $20,000 on a Pepper, what’s a little remodeling?

I really kind of adore the pet-like characteristics of robots – I mean who doesn’t want a BB-8 or an Aibo robotic dog? Like most American’s I am leery about privacy issues and having one company gain so  much data on my preferences and habits.  Where do you weigh in?

Trends I Expect to See at Design & Construction Week 2018

KBIS 2018 Home Trends on KitchAnn Styl
I always make it a priority to continue to provide my customers with the best construction materials and remodeling advice our industry has to offer.

This January I’ll be attending Design & Construction Week in Orlando. This is  the largest annual gathering of the residential design and construction industry that  features the co-location of the NAHB International Builders’ Show (IBS) and the National Kitchen & Bath Association’s Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS).

As one can imagine, when such industry powerhouses combine to throw an event meant to both inspire and connect design-build professionals with the most innovative resources and materials available on the market, their attendees would come home with a wealth of knowledge and ideas. Continue readingTrends I Expect to See at Design & Construction Week 2018

Design in 2017 Will be More Authentic

Modern dark Farmhouse | KitchAnn Style
As we look in the rear view mirror at 2016 we greet 2017 with the desire to reboot, reprioritize and seek authenticity.

PANTONE understood these needs when they selected Greenery as the Color of the Year for 2017. According to Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, Greenery “symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose.” Continue readingDesign in 2017 Will be More Authentic

Petra Kitchen

Gianluca Tondi, owner of TM Italia Cucine, designed the Petra Kitchen presented at the Abitare il Tempo trade fair. Petra is a new type of custom kitchen that conceals the working components when not in use. A remote control opens the travertine top to reveal the cooktop and downdraft ventilation. The faucet and oven are also mechanized to raise and lower.

TM Italia Cucine calls their home automation system (domotics) “TM_touch’n’go”.  With the touch of a button you can open the kitchen and view the monitor, “TM_Vison,” for watching television or use the Internet connection for searching the web. 

The monitor is show raised on the left end in the first two photos. The tall cabinets are also sleek and have no decorative hardware housing dishes and the refrigerator.
I would love to have seen this in person.



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