In the next edition of the Consumer Electronics Show, scheduled for January 2014, we’re going to see home appliances get a lot smarter. LG is set to launch HomeChat, a service that will let anyone control their home appliances using a smartphone.
The Korean company has announced a tie-up with messaging app Line in order to make the HomeChat service a reality. LG has announced that it will be showcasing its next generation of technologies that will take advantage of Natural Language Processing (NLP), allowing users to communicate, monitor and share content with their home appliances.
Talk to your appliances
The HomeChat service works in a simple way. Using Line, you send a short message to a particular appliance and it will change its state accordingly. For instance, if you text “I’m going on a vacation,” to HomeChat, it will automatically ask you “Should I convert to vacation mode?” Answer in the affirmative and the devices will set themselves to the mode. The refrigerator will go in to power saving mode, the robotic vacuum cleaner will sweep the floor at a set time every day and the washing machine will run a cycle a day prior to you arrival.
You will also be able to receive real time status updates from the refrigerator. You can also use your smartphone to send images to the fridge’s display panel using Line too, which could turn into a very neat security feature. With the vacuum cleaner, you can use HomeChat to control its movements and even check when it last cleaned your house. The washing machine can be started remotely and the status can be seen using Line. You can also get push notifications informing you if a wash cycle is completed. Finally, with the smart oven, you can have HomeChat find you recipes and figure out ingredients necessary for specific dishes.
The good part about this tie up between LG and Line is the fact that the cross-platform messaging application is available on most major platforms like Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Nokia Asha, and desktops and laptops that run Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X. However, we’ll have to wait for the CES next month to see if HomeChat will work on all platforms or just on LG smartphones.