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Hive Link: pattern detection changing smart care for everyone

1st April 2019



The potential for smart home tech to support families looking after loved ones is something we’re hugely excited about at Hive. It’s why we’re particularly proud that Hive Link, our first smart caring service, won an innovation award at this year’s CES in Vegas! (Ok, that’s big news in our world…) So, what’s so innovative about it?

The secret: pattern detection

Literally millions of people across the UK look after family members beyond just their kids – from a loved one at home to an elderly relative living nearby. Hive Link is designed to support these caring relationships in a simple, unobtrusive way.

The secret ingredient? At the heart of Hive Link is a new pattern detection system that learns someone’s daily routines via discreet sensors and smart plugs around their home.

That way, it can tell if something’s wrong. And most importantly – all without the need for cameras or anything your loved one has to wear, which could make them feel their independence is being compromised. The sensors works in the background and your loved one doesn’t need to change a thing.

Eveline Kleinjan, part of our team behind Hive Link, explains, “The Hive sensors and plugs that come as part of Hive Link gather information on your loved one’s routines all the time. Using pattern detection, Hive Link analyses recent patterns of movement and is then able to establish whether there’s a deviation from someone’s regular routine.

“The moment something happens outside their normal routine – let’s say the front door is left open longer than normal – Hive Link sends you, the carer in the relationship, a notification on your smartphone.

“Then you can call through the Hive app to make sure everything’s ok. You can also set up a circle of family members or close friends within the app who also receive notifications. So your loved one knows there’s always someone there. And the responsibility isn’t always on one person to respond.

“In addition to getting smart notifications, carers can also check an activity log which sits on the Hive app. It logs what’s happened, like what time your loved one walks out of their bedroom in the morning, or when they turn on the TV. Activities that aren’t an invasion of privacy, but that indicate they’re getting on with their day as normal.”

Learning all the time

Of course, life changes all the time and routines alter. What makes Hive Link really unique is the way its pattern detection system is constantly learning and adapting.

“Let’s say a loved one usually gets up before 8:30am” explains Dr Oliver Parson, data scientist at Hive. “Then suddenly they start getting up at nine. Hive Link will initially raise a notification – before adapting to their new routine.

“Or imagine that a loved one is having some renovations done to the outside of the house and a builder needs to run an extension cable to a plug inside. Hive Link will recognise the new normal: that the door is being left open for longer than it used to be. Then when the builder leaves and the routine goes back? Hive Link will adjust back too.

“Ultimately it means that Hive Link keeps getting better over time.”

Trying it in our own homes

As well as the service constantly learning, here at Hive we’re always talking to our customers to find out what works and to see how we can make the service better. Zoe Dyer, product manager for Hive says, “We have regular meetings with research groups using the service who give us detailed feedback. They also test out new features before they go live.

“Lots of the team working on Hive Link have it up and running in their home too! So it really is a constant process of trying and tweaking, iterating and improving until Hive Link’s the best it can be. And then we go again.”

Find out more about Hive Link.

hive link, notification details, no activity yet pre-OSA, closed, iPhone X

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