"Smart ARbnb" concept

Level 2
548 Views

Dear Hosts,
I am Tomas, an Industrial design student from the Netherlands. Currently, I am doing a project where I combine Augmented reality, Airbnb, and smart home systems. I would really appreciate it if you could give me some feedback about the concept!

All negative and positive thoughts are really valuable!
Here you can visit the project website: https://smartarbnb.com/


Thank you very much for your thoughts and opinions!


18 Replies

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

Level 2

The main questions that I am interested in, but any thoughts would be valuable:
• Does this idea look desirable and usable for Airbnb hosting?

• Is it important to create interesting experiences for the guests?
• Would you use this or a similar system in your rented property?
• What kind of problems or benefits you see with this system?

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level 10

It’s not clear what your product actually does. @Tomas277 

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

Level 2

Hi Helen!
Thanks for replying!
The main idea is to create a website that could help your guest easily control smart homes, like changing the lights, setting the temperature, controlling music and etc. It would also give a simple list of atmospheres that the guest could choose to create, for example, "Movie Night", which could dim the lights in the living room down, pause playing music, lock the door, turn on the TV, and open Netflix on it.  An additional part of the project is a small blinking devices called "IoT indicators" which would show where exactly a smart appliance is and when scanned with a mobile camera show the controls of it, the principle is like QR code, but it uses light.  And finally, the website would show what kind of automation are in the smart home system for guest to be aware. For example, I heard that in one Airbnb apartment all lights and appliances would turn off if no one moves longer than 40 minutes. If the guests are watching a movie and everything turns off, it can bring a huge dissatisfaction. If guests would be aware of these automations, they could prevent that 🙂

I hope right now it is a bit clearer. If you have more questions, please let me know!
Thanks!

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Los Angeles, CA
Level 8

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Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Los Angeles, CA
Level 8

Hey Tomas. I get exactly the market you’re going for. My question is whether there are enough smart Airbnbs to make this a viable product. If what you’re trying to achieve is a good sales tool, then job well done. If you want a profitable business, then somehow I think you need to determine the percentage of Airbnbs that use smart devices. I personally avoid, to the best of my ability, smart lighting for this very reason. My music system and smart pool app are both loaded onto a designated iPad, for which I leave guests instructions. Even my uber high-end guests are quite impressed with even this level of sophistication. For what other devices besides audio and lighting would this app you are presenting be applicable to?  

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

Level 2

Thank you, Debra, for your insights!
They are really valuable!

This project is more like an addon to the existing smart home system, so every device that belongs to it could be controlled by this application. While currently, the highest benefit would be lighting and audio control, in the future, when all other appliances like dishwashers, ovens, washing will become connected, this application could unify all the devices and help easier to control them. While I was doing my research, some of the guests of Airbnb I interview mentioned that the kitchen appliances, like the oven, are really confusing to them. So I was trying to create a way, how they could set them up more easily, with more explanations or simpler settings.

In addition, one of the other values of this project is a list of atmospheres that the host could create and guests could choose to execute, for example, "Romance", which could dim the lights and change the color to something cozier,  start playing Eric Clapton "Wonderful tonight", lock the door, turn off the TV and light up a cabinet where guests could grab a glass of wine.
What do you think about this aspect? Is it something that you would like to integrate into your rented property?

Thanks for your answers! 🙂

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
NY, NY
Level 10

@Tomas277  Like @Debra48 I like this idea and would like to install it in my own home, an apartment in NYC.  At my Airbnbs in Maine, you might be surprised at what I see as the drawback:  all the lights you're introducing.  I'm replacing all my outdoor lighting with Dark Sky compliant fixtures and attempting to reduce any non-essential lighting.  New appliances, like printers, dishwashers, washing machines and dryers, come with lights that can't be turned off except by turning off the appliance itself.  Although my houses are modern, they are surrounded by woods and fields from which you can still see the Milky Way, so I don't want to introduce any additional lighting.  

 

"According to the 2016 groundbreaking 'World Atlas of Artificial Night Sky Brightness,' 80 percent of the world’s population lives under skyglow. In the United States and Europe 99 percent of the public can’t experience a natural night."  Food for thought.

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

Level 2

Thank you Ann for your thoughts!
In my initial idea, those lights should be turned on only when guests open the web application. My bad, I think I didn't say that clearly 😕
But you are right, those lights should be even more unobtrusive! Or maybe I could introduce a "Dark" mode, which would reduce the lights to the bare required minimum.

Maybe you have already some smart devices in your rented houses? How your guests react to them?


Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
NY, NY
Level 10

@Tomas277  I like your idea of reducing the lights to "dark" mode.  I wish every manufacturer did that!

 

The only thing I have is a smart TV.  I have a gas fireplace in the cabin that had a remote control, but guests made a hash of it, so it had to be replaced with a simple on/off panel.  The remote for the gas fireplace at the bigger house works okay.  I also have an old built-in stereo system there that I thought I would have to take out, but I adapted it with a simple cord that can be plugged into a phone.

 

I do think it would be fun to essentially hand guests an app that would control the house.  I just read an Airbnb thread on Reddit about having music playing at check-in time to set an atmosphere.  The response was equally divided:  half were very enthusiastic, half considered it creepy.

 

But my houses in Maine encourage guests to unplug and get away from it all, so I won't be introducing much more technology right now.  But I hope you'll encourage other young developers to think about light!  🙂

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Munnsville, NY
Level 10

@Ann72 , Lighting control and remoting retrofits or new construction can be expensive and once implemented are much more prone to breakdown from power surges/ brownouts and failure to communicate than simple switching and dimmers.   A decent Lutron Dimmer can cost $20 +/- , the same device with E control is closer to $75 without extra GUI's or Human interfaces and config and thats if your able to DIY the job.  They do make "plug and pray' type high tech "Clappers" (remember clap on/ clap off commercial?  ha, ha) for simple stand alone AC powered devices and lighting but that gets messy with installed lighting.   

 

I'm guessing you have replaced all of your lighting possible with LED's but for those that haven't, consider it.  Its the easiest and sometimes biggest power saving upgrade in the home you can usually do safely as a homeowner without a huge investment.  It also unloads circuits a bit in older places with very old underrated wiring and gets rid of all that nasty mercury and flicker from your fluorescent bulbs .   They literally make LED replacement bulbs for every type of residential bulb found  and the light is much higher quality.  If your local home store doesn't have it or is trying to rob you, Amazon has them for the right price shipped to your home!!!!!.   

 

Just my 2 cents on saving money and the environment in the same motion, stay well, JR

 

Other savings through insulation and higher efficiency heating and AC can be green and save green but are often cost prohibitive and often destructive.   

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Sayulita, Mexico
Level 10

I started replacing my bulbs wit LEDs about 3-4  years ago. I didn't go around and change all of them, but every time an incandescent burnt out, it got replaced with an LED. Now pretty much all the lights are LED, except a few that don't get used much, so haven't burnt out yet.

@Melodie-And-John0

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
NY, NY
Level 10

@Tomas277  I thought of another smart feature at one of my Airbnbs - I have a lock box.  I send the guest an invitation that’s restricted to the dates they’re staying, the guest downloads the app and registers, then the box opens with their phone’s Bluetooth present.  They never have to punch in a code.  Guests have found it very convenient.

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
Sayulita, Mexico
Level 10

I wouldn't book a place that required that I download an app for anything. @Ann72

Re: "Smart ARbnb" concept

in
NY, NY
Level 10

@Sarah977  Aw, that's too bad.

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