Independent Living

Independent living with smart water meter

Peace of mind, without loss of privacy. Thanks to miraculous improvements in medicine and technology, we’re living longer, healthier lives than we ever have before. That’s a wonderful thing, but it also presents us with a gradual yet inexorable trend – the average age of the global population is getting higher and higher with each year that goes by.

Someone turns 70 once every seven seconds. The number of people over sixty is projected to increase by 56% by 2030, and it will surpass two billion by 2050. An aging population could have serious consequences for our health and social systems, as well pensions, housing and the economy at large. Many experts now believe we must start working on ways to automate and digitise healthcare processes wherever we can, to maximise our ability to care for an aging society with the resources we have.

At one time, living later years of your life in the comfort of your own home – AKA “independent living” – was considered an aspirational goal. Nowadays, it’s being examined as a key strategy to reduce strain on healthcare and enhance quality of life in an aging society. We live in a world where we can summon almost any service we need from the internet at will – we can order food or transport; we can arrange fresh laundry or call up the faces and voices of our loved ones from anywhere in the globe. The same technology provides ways for caregivers and relatives to be always in touch, or even monitor dependents around the clock – but where do we strike the balance between “independent living” and “monitored existence”? No-one likes to feel their space is being invaded.

SONIC BY HERO LABS PROVIDES A WAY TO PROVIDE PEACE OF MIND WITHOUT LOSS OF PRIVACY.

Installing Sonic in a home not only protects against the most common form of damage and disruption (water leaks), it also provides a non-invasive way to warn caregivers or family members if something seems to be amiss. Sonic monitors the water use in the property and understands the difference between appliances, running taps and even flushing toilets – so it can build up a picture of normal water usage in the home, and identify if that pattern is broken. Running taps and flushing toilets are a good indicator for whether someone is up and about, and can even be used as a proxy for hydration levels. Sonic can learn that someone normally showers in the morning and recognise if they don’t, providing an early warning that they might have fallen or be bed-bound with illness. In scenarios where a carer visits only once or twice a week, Sonic can help to fill in the gaps by providing very non-intrusive touchpoints – and if a pipe does burst one day, Sonic can reduce the scale of the problem and warn family members so that you can deal with it together.

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