Robotic furniture may be the future of interior design

Robotic furniture may be the future of interior design

By Sofiane Boukhalfa

Robots have now become so advanced that doctor bots may soon be good enough to be a regular fixture not only in operating rooms, but in hospital rooms as well as care facilities. The medical industry, however, is not the only one benefiting from these technological advancements. In fact, the Boston-based startup Ori has recently unveiled a line of robotic furniture, which is expected to revolutionize the whole interior design industry.

How it works:

Currently, Ori’s kits come with four basic components: the brain, skeleton, muscle and skin. The brain, as the name suggests, is what connects to the internet to process your commands and then move the whole assembly accordingly. The skeleton, on the other hand, consists of the assembly’s wheels and frame. The muscle is made-up of the motors, tracks and electronic components that take care of physically moving the assembly. Finally, the skin consists of the actual pieces of furniture that can be integrated into each kit.

Maximizing the smallest of spaces:

Originally designed for cramped spaces, the team behind Ori says each kit can make any space up to three times bigger thanks to their expert use of ergonomics and modularity. This is because instead of building a separate bedroom, living/dining room and home office, for instance, Ori can put everything in a single assembly that you can easily transform into whatever you need at any given time. This, of course, also makes decluttering spaces much easier because it allows you to literally just have one set-up out at a time, ultimately keeping clutter to a minimum.

Unparalleled convenience:

The best thing about Ori’s kits is that they can be controlled using either voice commands or an app. This means that you won’t have to worry about physically moving anything yourself. Just think about how much time this would save you. For instance, if while watching TV on the couch you decide it’s time for dinner, all you have to do is get up and press a button on your smartphone. Your furniture would then take care of rearranging itself to turn your living room into a dining room—all while you prepare your meal. When you come back, everything would already be perfectly laid out for you.

The price tag:

Each kit currently sells for around $10,000. Right now, Ori’s main customer base consists of real estate developers in major cities in both the US and Canada. The company, however, has also partnered up with several Boston developers, namely Samuels and Associates, which has buildings in the Harvard Square area; Hines, which has Marina Bay units; and Skanska, which has several apartments in the Seaport area. Sometime in the future, however, Ori kits are expected to be made directly available to consumers.

What’s next?

Ori is looking to also develop units for other parts of the house like the bathroom and kitchen. The company hopes to someday build a space that uses nothing but robotic furniture and walls. Its ultimate goal is to improve the quality of life of people by making spaces adapt to them instead of the other way around.

Featured image courtesy of Ori Systems.

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