One of the condos belongs to professional poker player Jean-Robert Bellande (whom you may have seen on Survivor: China?). Designed by Robert Messiana, the bachelor pad has TVs that drop from the ceiling and emerge from the wall, a fireplace with color-changing LEDs, a touchscreen-controlled shower from Kohler, and a toilet from the same company that features an “automatic deodorization system.” (Another suite in the same building boasts the Bluetooth-enabled toilet that can sync to your playlist.) Temperature, lights, music, and TV are accessible with control pads on several walls. We got to play around with the Control4 system, which was integrated throughout the home on wall-mounted touchscreens.
If you were in the bedroom, you could flip on the lights in the office (all the way down the hall) or inflict your favorite Pandora station upon whoever is cooking in the kitchen. The lights were all dimmable, and the slidable controls let you get down to fairly specific levels of brightness. There’s a split second of lag between sliding the control and the lights’ response, which might make it easier to just flip a switch. The walls also had plenty of these, for when the touchscreen proves too much. And let’s be honest: You’re probably not going to want to flip through your AppleTV menu while standing with your back to your flat screen (especially when your bed’s right there), so tablets, smartphones, and remotes are still necessities.
In the kitchen, Dacor was the designers’ brand of choice. The company’s Discovery iQ ranges and ovens are app-enabled, so you can turn them on from the grocery store. They run on an Android operating system, and you can search for recipes, watch videos, and browse the Web on the displays.
Right now it may take a luxury condo to see a house full of smart devices that actually play nice together, but every year the technology gets cheaper and more pervasive — and within reach of non-millionaires.