In the bathroom, design is entering into an ever stronger symbiosis with technology and digital elements. The main argument for digitising the bathroom is enhanced convenience. At the same time, LED technology has already shown us just how much of an impact modern technical equipment can have on the aesthetic quality of the bathroom too, not to mention sensory qualities and safety aspects. But even multimedia entertainment is taking up residence in the former wet room – which isn’t actually that wet at all any more. The newly launched technologies for the bathroom are meant to enhance our everyday lives and stand for a new generation of products that focus on users’ needs. The technical advancements don’t just appeal to the bathroom user’s need for comfort and his play instinct, they can invoke very rational arguments in their favour as well: thanks to new technologies, the fittings are getting smaller, water consumption is being reduced and life in the bathroom is becoming not just more emotional but easier too.
Designing a fitting doesn’t just mean designing solid matter: with Ambiance Tuning Technique from Dornbracht, various types of jet can be combined to create pre-programmed “Water Choreographies” – a variety of water scenarios based on different water temperatures and flow rates. There are three different scenarios (Balancing, Energizing and De-Stressing) and three different types of outlet (JustRain, WaterSheet and WaterBar). Three programmes are activated by pushing the respective button for two seconds and start automatically. The temperature and flow settings of the various outlet points vary within each scenario. The water is choreographed by the electronic eValve located directly behind each of the outlet points.
Photo: Dornbracht, Ambience Tuning Technique (Design: Sieger Design)
Tapping into intelligence
Evolution is a collection of fittings based on optoelectronics. It was conceived for the new era of digitally controlled bathroom fittings and is designed with an eye to the electronic networking of virtually all the technical functions within the household. Virtual sliders and buttons replace the mechanical components. Evolution is activated on approach and provides the user with his individual presets at the push of a button. The product’s lucid graphics ensure safe selection and adjustment of the water temperature and flow rate. Evolution is a product line from Jado for which Viega offers accompanying products with a coordinated design based on the same electronic “operating platform”. In future, this new platform will make it possible to bring the water, power and data supply systems together into a networked, intelligent system.
Photo: Jado, Viega, Evolution (Design: Artefakt)
From pre-warmed seats to cleansing showers – modern toilets are setting new standards of hygiene and convenience for “the smallest room in the house”. Visually, the SensoWash design by Philippe Starck is intended to be as discreet as possible. The shower-toilet seat from Duravit boasts a strikingly flat and slender design that only curves gently upwards at the back towards the wall. Not until you look into the opened toilet is the bidet function revealed: a stainless steel spray wand. The user can choose from three different wash modes: the Ladywash cycle for particularly gentle cleansing that caters to feminine needs, the Rearwash function for a fresh, clean feeling and the Comfortwash mode for extra-thorough cleansing.
Photo: Duravit, SensoWash Starck (Design: Philippe Starck)
New message: the tub’s full!
TRIOe+ from Viega assimilates the trend towards intelligent electronics in the bathroom: the new, thoroughly understated bathtub set unites the technical functions of filler, overflow and drain in an integrated system. The modular control unit can be installed into the edge of the tub, the wall or a combination of both. The rotating “scroll display” makes for ultra-simple usage and provides precise information on how the saving of the personal presets or the filling of the bath is progressing. Whether the user operates it via iPhone from the office or on the spot by pushing a button – the new, electronically controlled and patented base inlet ensures the water is perfectly mixed and fills the tub almost soundlessly, keeping the user informed and switching itself off when the tub is full.
Foto: Viega, TRIOe+ (Design: Artefakt)