Behind the Scenes of a Dorset Assisted Living Installation

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There has been a lot of talk in the industry regarding assisted living. Having worked on an assisted living project, we definitely see this as an untapped market.

Our assisted living project was for a heavily disabled client based in Poole, Dorset, who had no use from his neck down, after serving in the armed forces. When we met him, his main requirement for us was to provide a smart home system that would give him some independence around the home.His other wish was that he didn’t want a house full of black boxes, or for his home to look like it had been set up for his disability.

Following the brief, our aim was to provide our client with full home automation including; lighting control in all the key rooms, heating control of the whole house, blind control in the lounge, study and bedroom, and full AV control of all the key rooms. We also wanted to try something that would change his lifestyle, so considered unique eye and voice systems to provide him with control over basic functions.

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As an authorised dealer of Control4, we decided to specify its control system for this project. This system looked after the different components within the project and provided the interface for the client to control via an Eyegaze system. We used Voice Viper for the voice control, and set some basic phrases for the client to operate the devices within his home, such as ‘TV on’, ‘Lights on’, and ‘Blinds Down’.

Rako is another brand we are associated with, so we used a number of their products throughout the property. We interfaced Rako keypads to allow visitors and carers to have control over the system. Rako wireless lighting provides the lighting control, while Rako DMX control offers a relaxing colour changing effect within the master en suite.

Behind the Scenes_Assisted Living 3The system includes full HD distribution in four rooms, with a large 55in. screen and full 5.1 surround sound system in the main lounge. Audio is distributed via Sonos, and the en suite benefits from an Aquavision bathroom TV. Heating control is via Heatmisers’ NEO system, and Silent Gliss Blinds were used for shading in this property.

The end result is a system that can be controlled via the client’s Eyegaze and voice control. It is fully functional and easy to use for visitors and carers. With all equipment hidden, this very smart home doesn’t look any different to any other property.

The client is very happy with the solution that we provided, and loves the way he has regained some independence and control of basic home devices.

This is the first assisted living project that we have completed, but we see it playing a big role in the company going forwards.

David Taylor is director of Doreset-based, CEDIA Member integration firm, Automated AV.