Designing for connected homes

UXLx | 2013 See all

Designing for connected homes

Speaker: Claire Rowland

“Siri, did I leave the oven on?”

The idea of the connected home has been around for 40 years or more, but has never taken off as a mass market proposition. But this is changing. Mainstream retailers are starting to bringing out connected home hardware and services to help consumers understand and control their energy use and heating, secure their homes, know who’s in and out, be alerted to any emergencies and generally feel reassured that everything’s OK at home. It will soon be normal to turn lights and appliances on and off from your smartphone, and set your burglar alarm over the web.

UX is key to turning this interesting niche technology into a mass market success. But the home is a challenging environment: it’s often a shared space inhabited by different people with different needs and goals, and it’s our refuge from the world: the last place any of us want to feel overwhelmed by technology.

In this talk, I’ll cover:

  • what connected home technologies can do, and why this space holds so many opportunities
  • why no-one has got connected home design right (yet), and how experience design is key to creating commercially successful services in this area
  • a few practical UX guidelines learned from connected home design that can be applied to any complex multi-device system