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Time for a bathroom redo? Houzz unveils latest tech for toilets, tubs, and showers

How much actual business gets done in bathroom “offices”? That’s a fair question given the percentage (58) of people who use mobile devices in their home bathrooms, says the 2016 U.S. Houzz Bathroom Trends Studyas reported on Silicon Beat.

High-tech kitchen appliances, such as refrigerators and stoves, are understandable luxuries. Smart home systems connect devices in your home to your car, your wrist, the cloud, and beyond. But why do people want new tech in their bathrooms, and what are they looking for?

Related: So, how do space toilets work? Astronaut Tim Peake answers “the big question”

The top triggering events, in other words, the reasons why people decided to renovate their bathrooms, were “can no longer stand the old bathroom” (46 percent), “wanted to do it all along and finally have the means” (38 percent), and “old bathroom deteriorated/broke down” (29 percent). Eighty-two percent spent between $5,001 and $50,000 on their bathroom renovations, with the largest number, 42 percent, spending from $10,001 to $25,000.

And what about high-tech components in these pricey bathroom redos?  It’s mostly all about toilets, bathtubs, and showers.

Twenty percent of new toilets installed had high-tech features, including (in order of frequency) self-cleaning, overflow protection/anti-clogging, motion-activated covers or seats, built-in nightlights, heated seating, self-deodorizers, and hands-free flushing.

Of the new bathtubs installed 12 percent had techy built-ins, including lighting, heated backrests, scented mist dispensers, and sound and vibration. The 9 percent of new showers that had high-tech goodies included mood lighting, digital controls, built-in sound, showerheads with LED lighting, and showerheads with speakers.

Not-so-high-tech features some homeowners chose were radiant heating (20 percent), towel warming racks (9 percent), home entertainment systems or TVs (3 percent each), and fireplaces (enjoyed by just 1 percent).

Almost two-thirds of the survey respondents reported spending 30 to 60 minutes daily in their home bathrooms and more than 25 percent more than an hour daily. Overall 58 percent use a mobile device at least weekly in their home bathrooms.

The top three uses of mobile devices in the head are to check email (36 percent), text or IM (28 percent), and make or accept phone calls (22 percent). Next on the list are check social media, listen to music, and read, at 21 percent, 20 percent, and 18 percent respectively, after which the remaining usage categories drop to single digit percentages.

The online survey about bathroom trends was taken by 2,127 Houzz home design website users. The participants were surveyed in June and July 2016 and all had completed a bathroom redo project in past 12 months. The extensive survey covers most likely more elements than you could ever imagine on your own about bathroom design and renovation. If you want to dig deep into the details you can download the 2016 U.S Houzz Bathroom Trends study here.