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Seniors may call for help from Google Assistant during emergency

Seniors may call for help from Google Assistant during emergency
At ISE taking place earlier this month, French home automation startup ProKNX presented an emergency call system using Google Assistant for seniors living alone at home.

By saying “OK, Google. Help,” the company’s realKNX Smart Senior Living system will send everyone on the senior’s caregiver list a help alert. When caregivers receive the notification, they can respond by voice or text, which will be transformed via the text-to-speech technology, and the message will be played on the help requester’s Google Home devices.

With the integration of Personal Emergency Response System and the voice assistant, no more panic buttons or pendants worn on the neck will be needed.

Service providers may integrate smart home programming to react to unusual events. For example, when a motion sensor in a bathroom in a senior’s home doesn’t detect activities in the morning, Google Assistant will be triggered to ask the resident if everything is okay. The resident must respond “Ok, Google, I’m fine” to disable emergency alerts that will be sent to family members.

Christian Kiefel, managing director of ProKNX, sees the low-cost Google Home Mini (US$50) as a great means to enter the senior-living market.

ProKNX offers home automation solutions based on the KNX standard, which is mostly used in Europe. At the end of last year, its realKNX solution was certified by Google, allowing it to work with the smart voice assistant.

ProKNX also supports Amazon Alexa and Apple Siri. However, but the company believes only Google Assistant is robust enough to support ProKNX’s two-way voice communications.

ProKNX has also applied augmented reality for home automation two years ago. Users can hold a smartphone to a device, such as a lamp, and an interface will show up to control the automation system.

KNX Association has 400 manufacturers in 42 countries and more than 71,000 partners in 161 countries.

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