Smart devices being trialled in residents’ homes in Yuhua

CNA — 28 November 2015

SINGAPORE: Ten households in Yuhua have been participating in a trial to experience, first-hand, the use of smart devices in a lived-in environment. The trial began in Oct 2015, and runs until March or April 2016.

The trial seeks to study the usefulness and user-friendliness of such devices, and how residents can benefit from such technologies. It will also enable government agencies to better understand the receptiveness of residents towards adopting smart solutions, and whether it had impacted their lifestyle and behaviours.

It follows the Housing Development Board (HDB) July 2015 announcement that Yuhua residents will be the first to experience Smart Living in an existing HDB estate.

Participating households had the opportunity to try technologies in one or two areas at no cost — home utilities management, or elderly monitoring systems — depending on factors such as whether they had elderly dependents and their IT savviness.

But some raised concerns over the possible high costs of implementing these solutions after the trial period. Addressing these concerns, Culture, Community and Youth Minister Grace Fu, who is also the MP for Yuhua, said the trial did not obligate them to buying the systems being tested.

“It serves the purpose of trying to assess the usefulness of the system to the people,” said Ms Fu. “With the feedback from residents, we’re able to know how useful these systems are, and try out different systems.”

She added: “At the end of this trial project, we will have to engage the residents about the usefulness and effectiveness, and also at what price points their willing to pay.”

Following this trial, HDB and Infocomm Development Authority will extend these smart solutions to all 3,200 Yuhua households in early 2016, available for purchase.

The estate is also the first to complete the HDB Greenprint programme this month, aimed at bringing energy-efficient, water management and waste management features into the estate.

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