Inside your ‘home of the future’ with solar panel windows and smart toilets – and it could SAVE you money

HOUSES of the future will look very different to the ones previous generations grew up in – and hi-tech gadgets are to thank.

Humanity is just a few breakthroughs away from transforming the key parts of the home into sci-fi wonders that improve our everyday lives.


Homes of the future will be loaded with tech-enhancements

Solar window panes

This beautiful home has a solar skylight made by one of the leading manufacturers of photovoltaic glass


This beautiful home has a solar skylight made by one of the leading manufacturers of photovoltaic glassCredit: Instagram / Onyx Solar
Traditional solar panels are opaque and cannot be used as a substitute in windows


Traditional solar panels are opaque and cannot be used as a substitute in windowsCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Solar window panes are an excellent way to turn a common household feature into a way to capture energy.

A traditional, non-transparent silicon solar panel will convert about 20% of the light that hits it to energy.

Recently however, a team of engineers claimed that a new type of solar window pane could manage an impressive rate of 15%.

While the energy conversion is lower, the most efficient solar glass technology now allows for 20% of visible light to pass through it to illuminate a room – versus the 0% of a regular solar panel.

There are scores of real-world applications for transparent glass that makes energy.

Though solar glass isn’t very popular yet, businesses think it could be a huge renewables opportunity – and could make running your home cheaper.

Power Technology reported that the number of photovoltaic glass patents has gone up by 200% in the last 10 years.

Robot butler

Elon Musk's calls the Tesla bot "Optimus"


Elon Musk’s calls the Tesla bot “Optimus”Credit: Tesla

Many homes have already been souped-up with digital assistants like Alexa handling mundane verbal tasks and managing Amazon orders.

For physical tasks, the Roomba is a neat, little vacuum that cleans the floors that people grow attached to, like a robotic pet – more advanced robots have been deployed in hospitals to undertake similar maintenance-adjacent tasks like lifting heavy loads.

German engineers developed a classy, humanoid robot that can take orders and make drinks while its artificial intelligence-powered mind develops.

Meanwhile, Elon Musk says his Optimus bot will undertake dangerous or boring tasks and will one day have a greater impact than Tesla.

“Those who are insightful or looking, listening carefully will understand that Optimus will ultimately be worth more than the car business, worth more than [full self-driving]” Musk said.

All signs point toward a robot-infused home where families can focus on being human and robots can handle mindless tasks.

Biometric locks

You'll never be locked out when the house key is your fingerprint


You’ll never be locked out when the house key is your fingerprintCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Biometric locking technology is making the leap from sci-fi to the real world and some renditions are already available.

Many brands have produced finger-print-enabled locking technologies that can be installed around the home or even on the front door – even Samsung is in on the action with a $399.99 fingerprint and number lock.

An iris scanner is considerably more costly with Digital Trends‘ top recommended product coming in at $989.

To find a growing tech trend, follow the money – the smart locket market is valued at about $3billion and is expected to grow to $8billion by 2026.

Smart toilets

A new smart toilet works like an in-home testing lab


A new smart toilet works like an in-home testing labCredit: Getty Images – Getty

From pit to outhouse to modern systems, each upgrade to bathroom technology has been drastic.

But, like the pin-and-tumbler lock, the toilet has gone relatively unchanged for decades.

There are smart toilets that will autonomously lift the lid or warm the seat – but there is a genuinely smart toilet working its way to market that could lengthen the user’s life.

Engineers at Stanford developed a toilet that runs urinalysis tests and evaluates stool samples – the toilet measures 10 different biomarkers in total to check if the user is in good health, or if they are indeed sick, it’s caught early.

“Everyone uses the bathroom – there’s really no avoiding it – and that enhances its value as a disease-detecting device,” Sanjiv Gambhir of Stanford Medicine said.

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Houses have functioned just fine without these products.

But, these flashy additions could make a house that works for its occupants as opposed to just four walls and a roof.

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