In a time when space is at a premium, it’s no surprise Silicon Valley is working on robotic beds that can be stored on the roof after you wake up.
There’s a fresh crop of tech start-ups trying to make small spaces more liveable, inspired largely by the sky-high housing prices of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Boston-based Ori is offering walk-in wardrobes that spring out from the wall at the touch of a button, a clever contraption that can turn a tiny studio into a home with a wardrobe, bedroom and office space.
San Francisco start-up Bumblebee Spaces claims to be “unlocking the third dimension” with moveable furniture of beds, wardrobes and drawers, stored on the ceiling until they are needed.
With a touch of a button on a smartphone, the furniture is lifted on suspension cords, providing space below to watch TV, entertain, practise yoga, or whatever else you have in mind.
This high-efficiency living is taken a step further with cameras installed in the drawers so people can see what’s in them. Inhabitants will be reminded when something isn’t touched for months on end to encourage them to get rid of it.
The company’s furniture system only takes a couple hours to install and the creators claim its technologies are safe. For example, there are sensors that detect when someone is standing below them, although, according to The Economist, this function is oversensitive and can leave the furniture stuck on the ceiling.
Like all technologies, robotic furniture is experiencing teething issues, including malfunctions where the furniture pops out when it’s not supposed to.
The Economist also noted that the hefty price tag means living in a micro apartment with this technology might not be any more affordable than a regular sized apartment with run-of-the-mill furniture.
But assuming the technology becomes cheaper as more people start using it, this type of furniture could potentially make high density living more affordable, efficient and comfortable – especially with more people choosing to live alone than ever before.