What is ‘Lucy’ and Why It Isn’t a Big Deal for the Smart Home

Appearing on Kickstarter, Lucy is a wall-mounted display that incorporates voice control and face recognition technology to help you control your smart home. However, the device might just fall short of what home automation enthusiasts are truly looking for. 

Currently, the trend with home automation devices is to bring forth either a sense of device integration or better interactivity through voice-controlled software. The recent Kickstarter project for the wall-mounted smart home display called Lucy is a combination of both. Its creators are trying to make a voice-controller assistance, who can easily automate most of the devices in a smart home via set preferences. It can do that not only by recognizing the voice of the person but also recognizing their face with the help of a machine learning algorithm.

Coming in different sizes, the wall-mounted display sounds like a dream come true for many enthusiasts. For starters, it is a decent touch-screen display that is mounted on the wall, which can easily be turned into a design piece. Furthermore, it is able to act like a smart home assistant, helping one control their home automation devices. With the ability to recognize a person’s face and voice, Lucy sounds a bit too good to be true. And chances are, the customer edition device, if one actually appears on the market, won’t be as good as most people hope.

Lucy Smart Home Assistant Kickstarter Project Other

Image Source: Official Lucy Kickstarter Project Page

The Double-Sided Coin of a Kickstarter Project

When backing a project on crowdfunding websites, such as Kickstarter, most people believe they are actually purchasing the product, when they are not. The creator of the project is actually in no way responsible for delivering anything to any backer. Of course, the creators of Lucy are dedicated enough and their project features pretty decent information, thus anyone backing the project should be calm enough that their money will be used responsibly.

However, the bigger issue is that even if the creators of the project manage to use the money responsibly and bring a device on the market, chances are it won’t be as good as advertised.

Why The Future of Lucy isn’t Looking Bright?

There are two huge issues with the Lucy kickstarter project. The first is the fact that in the video, the creators of the project have used mostly CGI and when they actually showed the prototype devices, they were barely offering any of the hyped features of the Lucy home assistant. Furthermore, most of the video featured the ‘proof of concept’ tagline, which basically means that no part of the video is actual software that is running in real time. This is additionally worrying, especially having in mind that the software should be one of the main selling points of the device.

Lucy Smart Home Assistant Kickstarter Project Prototype

Image Source: Official Lucy Kickstarter Project Page

Developing face and voice recognition software is extremely difficult and chances are Lucy might use some help from Google Now and Android OS to actually run. However, if it does, Lucy will be nothing else, but a downloadable app and could be featured on any tablet.

Of course, we haven’t talked about the wall-mounted part, but having in mind the price point of Lucy, the device doesn’t seem to be focused on delivering a great visual experience. Thus, a cheap, pixelated touch-screen is probably what the creators will be going for. According to their Kickstarter project page, they’ve already chosen their manufacturers, which is always nice to hear when backing a project on a crowdfunding website.

Nonetheless, Lucy may not be the dream smart home assistant home automation enthusiasts are looking for. Even if Lucy manages to take off properly, there are other issues with the project. Especially in a market that already has devices, such as the Amazon Echo and the Wink Wall-Mounted Controller, it’s hard to see how Lucy would be able to get a sustainable market share.

Those who are interested in learning more about the project or backing it up, can visit the official Kickstarter page of the project.

What are your thoughts on the Lucy Kickstarter Project? Let us know in the comments below!

For more smart home and IoT news about home automation, make sure to stay tuned to BuildYourSmartHome.co 

About Author

With a degree in programming, Ivan loves anything that can engage his thinking. He explores topics ranging from particle physics to religious debates. In his free time, he likes to think about what tech will be in the future.

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