The HomeCare project aims to integrate technological advances in home automation and user interaction through the TV. Choosing a TV and remote control as communication tools is due to the great familiarity that users have with these devices and their management. TV is much easier to use by people without knowledge of Informatics.
The current version is based on a web platform, designed for use in low-resource hardware supports (such as set-top box or Raspberry Pi). Also, it seeks to create an ecosystem that allows to know the state of the home and its inhabitants. To do this we will use the information we can get from the different sensors located within the home.
Examples of use are many, for example, by installing sensors on doors and windows it is possible to have a security system that notifies the user entrances and exits of the house. This notification may be made on TV, by e-mail, through a whatsapp or similar message, even if you are watching a program or, if desired, even if the TV is off (standby mode).
The main idea is that through the TV you can have access to a range of services that can be aimed at assisting the elderly or the disabled people or any other type of user. This service could be for example a request of an appointment with the doctor or a request of transportation.
The display of the TV is performed by embedding a viewer plugin in the browser, which provides access to a Freeview tuner, integrated or external (usually connected via USB). Thus, an expensive internet connection is not required to use the system.
In order to transmit the information and communicate the elderly people with the control center, the system may use the internet connection of the users but these connections are usually expensive and they are not good in rural environments. To reduce cost and allow transmitting the information, the system may be integrated with a WIFI network with low cost. The research group may deploy WIFI networks with a custom software developed by BISITE and a very low cost based on 5GHz and 2.4GHz networks. These technologies allow creating point to point connections in a range of 50 km and omnidirectional connections in 10 km to provide service to a whole village. This way, the users wouldn’t have to have an internet connection at home and they could use the WIFI low cost service provided by a piece of hardware of around 60 euros.