Smart home technology has proven its worth on the consumer market, and has now begun to make its way into the health care sector. Surveys have shown that many senior citizens are able to retain much more independence thanks to smart home and remote-monitoring technology. The Australian health company HomeStay has taken this information to heart with the HomeStay Intelligent Home platform, a smart home hub designed with senior citizens in mind.
The HomeStay Intelligent Home hub comes with four sets of equipment: Infrared motion sensors, door sensors, the hub itself, and an emergency pendant. The system works without the need for Wi-Fi; as long as there is 3G or 4G mobile coverage, HomeStay will have a connection. The company offers professional installation services but promises the system is easy to install without assistance. HomeStay intentionally left cameras out of the package in the interest of personal privacy.
The HomeStay uses the motion sensor to track sleep patterns, presence, and much more. The door sensors let loved ones know whether someone is home or not and how much they are moving around. The app automatically collects information and analyzes it, learning how each individual user lives over a period of several weeks. The HomeStay comes with 24/7 professional monitoring, so help is always close at hand. If the user ever presses the emergency pendant, the hub contacts the monitoring service. If no answer is given to their inquiries, emergency assistance is sent to the home.
At the moment, the HomeStay Intelligent Home platform is only available in Australia. The system is sold in three tiers. The lowest tier is called the Peace of Mind package and includes the emergency pendant and the hub and retails for $350 AUD ($245 U.S.). The midlevel tier is called the Family package and includes the hub, two motion sensors, and one door sensor, and provides app access for multiple users. It retails for $750 AUD ($525 U.S.).
The final package is the Independent Living package, which retails for $1,200 AUD ($840 U.S.). This package is designed to monitor the entire home and includes everything necessary to do so: One hub, five motion sensors, two door sensors, one refrigerator sensor, and app access for the entire family. Professional installation is also included in the price.
While the service is not yet available worldwide, the existence of services like the Homestay Intelligent Home platform show how smart home technology can provide independence to aging loved ones that might otherwise have no options other than assisted living facilities.
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