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Sofihub Home: Explaining the smart home for Seniors
Sofihub is smart home tech for seniors that offers motion-monitoring, scheduled reminders, and more.
How much does the Sofihub Home cost?
The Sofihub Home is quite an investment. Firstly, there's the outright cost of $1,199. That gets you the Sofihub Home device and eight motion sensors. The Sofihub Home uses a 4G SIM card to send and receive alerts, so there's an ongoing fee of $25 per month after the initial outright purchase.
Alternatively, Sofihub offers a monthly payment structure, not unlike a mobile phone plan.
To avoid the upfront cost, you can pay the Sofihub off over 12, 24, or 36 months. Here are those monthly plan costs.
Sofihub Home Price
$135 per month
$80 per month
$62 per month
It's kind of like buying a new iPhone. You've got the option to purchase the handset outright and go on a SIM plan, or pay nothing upfront and add the cost of the handset to your monthly phone bill.
Sofihub markets its Home hub as a personal reminder device, and while it does offer scheduled smart reminders, there's so much more to it. Firstly, the Sofihub Home is a voice-activated hub, much like a Google Home, that sits in the space where the occupant spends the most time, e.g. the lounge or dining room. Then, eight motion sensors are placed around the home in the most trafficked areas (bathroom, bedroom, kitchen, etc.). These sensors report back to the hub wirelessly, painting a picture of the occupant's daily routine.
Sofihub Portal app
These devices work in conjunction with the Sofihub Portal, an iOS and Android app that allows you to set timed reminders (take your medication, take out the bins, etc.) and send and receive alerts when there's an anomaly (like a detected fall, or no movement).
The idea is that family members and primary carers can access the app to glance at their loved one's behaviour and get notified if something's out of the ordinary. Multiple family members can join the Sofihub Home portal too. The system is designed to be as unobtrusive as possible, so not every added family member will receive notifications immediately. Still, if an anomaly appears and the primary caregiver doesn't respond promptly, an alert is sent to the next contact on the list.
Many Seniors these days are on the ball when it comes to smart tech. Still, for those who aren't particularly interested in learning how to operate an iPhone, the Sofihub messaging system allows family members to send SMS-to-voice messages that the Sofihub Home will play on its loudspeaker.
The Sofihub Portal app allows you to schedule one-off or recurring messages in the app. For example, you can fire off a text to Nan if you're in the middle of a meeting and let her know you'll call later. Sofihub will then deliver this message as a converted voice message.
Family members can set start and end times for specific areas of the house. For example, if your Nan is prone to falling asleep in front of the telly watching Eastenders re-runs (like mine is), you can set an "expiry time" for living room activity.
Let's say midnight is the cut-off. If Nan's burning the midnight oil with UKTV, Sofihub will fire off a stern reminder that it's time to roll credits and hop into bed. If your Nan has a rebellious streak and a "just one more episode" attitude, you'll receive a notification to say she's not gone to bed yet.
Sure, Sofihub is a total snitch, but it's the kind of snitch we can get behind.
Lastly, there's the Sofihub Beacon. On the surface, it looks just like any old pendant-style SOS device, offering fall detection and the like. But the Sofihub Beacon takes things a step further with geo-fencing and two-way calls.
Say there's a part of town you don't necessarily want your loved one to visit. Maybe your loved one has diabetes and an unshakeable craving for Ben and Jerry's, or maybe there's an area with limited accessibility. You can mark these areas in the Sofihub Portal, so the caregiver receives a notification when a user enters the vicinity.
The Sofihub Beacon also has a 4G SIM card, so the user can make and receive calls from nominated caregivers. It's a quick-and-easy way to get in touch when phone calls aren't an option.
The Sofihub Beacon and Home devices work in tandem too. If the user forgets to place the Beacon in its charging dock upon returning home, the Home device will play a reminder to put it in its cradle. Likewise, the Home will let you know if your Beacon is low on battery before leaving the house.
The Beacon comes at additional cost of $299 and is available through Myer, Sofihub's website and more.
Where to buy the Sofihub Home in Australia
If all this sounds like it would make life a little easier for you and your family, the Sofihub Home is currently available in-store at select Myer, Harvey Norman, and mobility stores. Exact retailers can be found over on Sofihub's website, but more retail chains will supply the Sofihub over the coming months.
You can also order the Sofihub Home at the following retailers.
- The Helping Hub
- LiTMUS LAB