When did we go from smart phones to smart toilets? Thanks to Kohler, what we considered downtime in the bathroom is now being transformed into a grooming routine of the next generation, as the brand seamlessly connects its bath products wirelessly through the Internet of Things (IoT). “Smart stuff happens when you connect one product to the next and what you end up with in our case is a journey through the bathroom, making the entire experience remarkably better,” explains Mark Bickerstaff, Kohler’s director of new product development, kitchen & bath.

Mark Bickerstaff, Kohler’s director of new product development, kitchen & bath spoke privately with Lifestyle Asia Bangkok before a design forum hosted at Gaysorn Urban Resort

Imagine this: your alarm wakes you up in the morning and before you even enter your intelligent bathroom, it has already checked the outside weather and adjusted the temperature and lighting to just the way you like it It knows the time your alarm rings so it has already started your shower for you, with the water set to your preferred temperature.

From the colour of a vintage ceramic glaze to the shape of a flower petal, Kohler designers and artisans find inspiration everywhere.

And the network of experiences generated from your highly intelligent and super connected bathroom continues. Your toilet seat is already prewarmed for you. Your smart mirror notices you step in and automatically selects your ‘Good Morning’ music playlist so that it plays as you step into the shower. As you step out of the shower, you set the mirror’s lights to make up mode. You may be surprised at first as your smart mirror resembles a huge iPad, but you get used to it. As you brush your hair, your mirror gives you the day’s weather, headlines and the city’s traffic reports. In a moment of tension as you answer a work call via your mirror, you forget how to do your makeup. So you look up a makeup tutorial on YouTube and follow suit.

Interacting with the smart mirror

Kohler’s Smart Mirror, which is basically like having an iPad in your bathroom. With the capability of downloading every app you could possibly need, from SnapChat and Instagram to YouTube, Spotify and more, morning makeup / grooming routines just got a whole lot more engaging. Making all things connected in the home and bathroom, Kohler is shaping the very future of the Design and Architect industry in Thailand, as well as our daily interaction with technology

“We knew these smart mirrors would be especially favourable in Asia, where grooming and taking care of your physical appearance is of utmost importance to consumers’, explains Bickerstaff. Very true.

It’s hard to believe that Kohler, the almost 150-year-old Wisconsin-based company whose first plumbing product in 1883 was a cast-iron tub was a horse trough turned bathtub has now catapulted us several decades into the future. The kitchen and bathroom design company may not have been the first to produce the smart mirror, but they were the first to make it mainstream and we’re very thankful for that. Gone are moments of sheer boredom in the bathroom as you feel like your in a spin-off James Bond movie. The days of training your ‘intelligent’ washing, grooming and self-care space and instructing it to do things has finally arrived. From the seat of the Numi, Kohler’s most advanced toilet, you can finetune every aspect if your bathroom experience, from the ambient coloured lighting to the genre of music you’re bathroom is playing.

‘Leading by the edge is what we live by. We have a real belief that connected bathrooms are going to be the future in bathrooms bringing people the delight they seek in their bathroom. Gracious living is what our products exemplify, fundamentally improving the quality of life of the person that uses them’.

Verdera Upgrade Mirrored Cabinet

Kohler’s smart bathroom line includes toilets, tubs, water filtration and faucets that are ‘trained’ to know the owner’s preferences for room temperature, water settings, activity times, and more. So how do you tell your bathroom what to do? Like the true master of your home, you interact with your Kohler bathroom by using voice commands, hands-free motion control, and personalized presets managed through a KOHLER Konnect app, available on both iOS and Android devices.

Available now in Thailand. For more information, please visit www.kohler.co.th.

Catherine Napalai Faulder
Catherine is Bangkok born and bred and knows the angles of the city and its people very personally. You'll often catch her writing about the upsides of Thainess, the richness and diversity of Bangkok's third cultures and the true meaning of wellness.