Project Jetson at Aloft Santa Clara

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Earlier this week, I had a chance to stay at the Aloft Santa Clara that features several Project Jetson Suites. I applauded Aloft for doing something different and testing out new interfaces. The Siri room is more evolutionary than revolutionary but it is a great way to extend a little bit the capabilities of readily available technologies.

On first using the system, I followed the Hey Siri enrolment process on the in room iPad. I then was able to use Siri’s information tools like looking up a restaurant, finding out weather information, etc. That’s standard.

However, the HomeKit integration was welcome. You can:

  • Turn lights on/off
  • Change color of lights
  • Change brightness
  • Change thermostat settings

I used Siri for:

  • Looking up weather
  • Setting alarm

The HomeKit integration was with a LIFX bulb/Philips Hue LED strip and an ecobee thermostat. There was very low latency in the interaction with the lights and a few seconds for the thermostat. The interaction was definitely missing far field capabilities and Siri made the interaction a little bit rigid.

Despite these, this was an excellent demo of what voice could do in a room. When I woke up in the morning, it was still dark out but I said, “Hey Siri, turn on the lights” and was able to find my way around, which can be daunting after the first night in a new hotel.

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