Last week, a lucky few of us went to Unruly’s office in East London to visit their pioneering Connected Home showroom. We were greeted by our hosts Bela Mashru, Kevin Ellis, Nicola Spooner and Leo Bernard, who took us to the frontal of the connected home, that lit up (like I imagine the door of a UFO would) and opened when ‘turn on doorway’ was said. Once inside, the first thing that struck me was how stylish and homey the apartment was. Designed with Swedish hygge in mind, it did not feel like you were walking around a stark futuristic space.
We then watched some intro videos of top bods from the Insights Factory and some media agencies, with OMD EMEA’s very own Jean-Paul Edwards talking about homes of the future becoming their own economic entities, with the right price and carbon footprint as set by the consumer. All agreed that advertising in a connected home must not be a distraction or a bombardment and that it has to be convenient and relevant. There was a focus on replenishment – is this a worry for brands? Will choice become even more price driven? Or does this mean we must ensure that when the time of need arises, our brand is top of mind?
After experimenting with some AR (Augmented Reality) by placing a car in the living room to explore, we then used some MR (Mixed Reality) to see if a nice new armchair would look good in the current space. Moving on to the kitchen, the fridge told us what recipes we could make from the contents of the fridge, advising us that we should use up that chicken as there was only one day left on its use by date. We then dabbled with the food shop, asking Alexa to send us some treats based on AI learnings of what we like from household data. Once our goodies arrive, we could nominate friends and family for free samples. Heading to the walk-in wardrobe, the new Echo Look helped us look good by taking full-length photos of us in different outfits, with the style check function using AI to understand trends and what flatters you.
It was a fantastic morning of future (and current) gazing. When can we move in?