Halton Housing Informetis Sony sensor
The sensor will be attached to the main fuse board in homes and will estimate operational status and power consumption of key appliances

Housing association trials AI to monitor elderly welfare

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Nicola Byrne

From Japan to Cheshire; Halton Housing has teamed up with Artificial Intelligence smart energy focused start-up, Informetis, for a year-long assisted living trial.

The test period began this month and will involve using sensor technology to support some of Halton Housing’s elderly customers in their own homes to ensure they are safe. With a single sensor fitted to the main fuse board, the Tokyo-based startup can estimate the operational status and power consumption of key appliances within the home. By using AI, the tech learns the ‘normal pattern of behaviour of appliances such as cooker, kettle, or TV and is then able to spot abnormal behaviour or trends.

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If there is an issue, for example, the kettle is typically used at least two times a day and on a particular day it hasn’t been used once, this will raise an alert. The alert will be sent via an app which close family and friends can access.

Halton Housing Informetis Sensor How It Works

Overview of the sensor-based technology. Click to expand

Halton Housing lead disruptor, Lee Reevell, believes the trial will help the housing association preempt when they need to intervene to check on welfare of its customers and “assist them to live more independently” in their own home with “extra peace of mind for families”.

Informetis senior board advisor, Jay Chinnadorai, said the company has already launched this solution commercially in Japan. He added the company’s philosophy has always been about “using technology for good” and this assisted living service is a “great example of putting that into practice”.

Informetis is a spin-out from Sony Corporation’s research and development energy division.

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