John Lewis has set its sights on the future by opening the UK’s largest smart home technology experience at its flagship Oxford Street store.
The 1,000 square foot space, which opened its doors to customers on April 7, boasts futuristic gadgets for every part of the home, John Lewis says.
The space focuses on demonstrating the latest cutting edge technology in an interactive, real-life home setting in a bid to communicate actual benefits to consumers.
The move comes in response to an 81% increase in sales of smart home products in the past year at John Lewis.
Despite the futuristic nature of the products, when it comes to buying, seeing is believing and customers still need top quality customer service in stores, John Lewis says. It is important for customers to touch and demo the technology in store before buying.
John Lewis buying director for electrical and home technology Jonathan Marsh said: “We are seeking to demystify the latest smartest technology for our customers. In-store experiences are now key as we’ve seen customer demand for physical experiences before committing to purchase increase. To help customers understand which smart technology is for them, our Partners have received extensive training to provide added value. Given our home and technology credentials, John Lewis is perfectly placed to support and lead the customer on the smart home journey.”
Four interactive zones: ‘Kitchen’, ‘Entertainment’, ‘Sleep’ and ‘Home monitoring’ demonstrate how customers can save time, effort and enhance their busy lifestyles by controlling their home through the touch of an app on their smart device, the retailer says.
Among the products on show is the Samsung Family Hub Smart Fridge, which boasts a built-in touch screen which brightens up automatically as you approach, and allows you to internet shop from your fridge. A set of cameras inside the door mean you can view the contents of your fridge from your phone when out and about so you know when to buy milk.
Also on show is the new S+ by ResMed, a non-contact sleep tracking system that helps analyse and improve quality of sleep. The ResMed S+ records light, noise and temperature conditions in bedrooms, and syncs to smart devices to provide personalised feedback on how to improve sleep.
All products featured in the space will be available to purchase in-store and online at Johnlewis.com and the smart home experience will be rolled out to other shops across the UK starting with the new John Lewis Leeds store, scheduled to open in Autumn 2016.
John Lewis innovation manager John Vary commented: “Smart home technology is designed to make life more convenient, and the introduction of this new curated experience – the first on the high street – marks a brilliant step in innovation for John Lewis. Showcasing the latest smart products, this experience demonstrates, in a real-life setting, how technology has exciting and far-reaching implications for today’s lifestyles.”
Products featured in the smart home experience include Philips Hue lighting; Sonos PLAY:5 Wireless Music System; Nest Protect 2nd Generation Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm; AEG BS8836880B ProCombi Plus Smart Oven and the Netatmo Welcome Home Camera with Face Recognition.
All electricals come with John Lewis’s two-year guarantee.