Someone paid $500 for a pack of 32 toilet rolls? It’s true. It was on eBay. As COVID-19 continues to spread so too does the hysteria surrounding the virus and fears of long-term quarantine. Supermarkets around the country literally have shelves stripped bare of toilet paper. Australia – are we going mad?

Actually no. According to research, Australia is pretty smart. Sydney in particular when it comes to smart cities.

How do other states rate?

Do you know what else is smart? Practicing good personal hygiene and staying informed through trusted sources like the Department of Health. Remember we can all play a role in reducing the impact of COVID-19. Smarter Communities have also announced preventative measures against the spread of the virus.

While everyone one of us is trying to protect ourselves and our families during the pandemic it would be a good idea to see how the Smart technology around us can help us to reduce the risk of being infected.

1. Voice Control

It’s been recommended by the WHO and health authorities to avoid close contact with others as well as touching public facility objects.
Public facility objects include lift buttons, door handles, doorbells, light switches, bus stop buttons…

Voice control technology has been around for a few years and it’s being integrated more and more with popular Smart Home and Building Automation systems. The technology is very well capable of eliminating many of the human physical interactions with electrical and electronic control devices by establishing the interface between human voice commands and Smart control systems.

Google Home and Amazon Alexa are the two well-known voice control systems available. They could be used in the office environments and lifts to be linked with Smart home Systems Like Fibaro to stop people from touching the devices for their control inputs.

2. Keyless entry and Intercom

Like “No Touch” systems a Keyless Entry (Smart Door Lock) also helps to eliminate human touch, there are many Smart Door Locks available in the market which could integrate with your smart home and smartphone through Bluetooth, Wifi, Z-Wave and Zigbee protocols. Once linked everyone could use their own personal Smartphone to control the Smart Door lock.

A Combination of Smart Door Lock and Intercom system could help humans to human physical contact during the Quarantine period. The door could be opened or closed for the delivery person remotely while vision and voice contact is established through the intercom system.

3. No Touch

Another way of eliminating human physical interaction (Touch) is using “No Touch” technology No Touch technology is already in use in toilets to dispense hand wash liquids, operating water taps, and controlling hand dryers.

Motion Sensors could also be utilised to control the lighting and open/ close doors, gates, and blinds. Gesture recognition systems also could be used to control a variety of devices like doors, alarms, lights, etc.

While it’s been recommended by the authorities to stop using banknotes, the pay pass technology is helping to stop the virus spread by eliminating the banknotes.

It may also worth mentioning that RFID tags are one of the very efficient ways of eliminating direct human touch if they are used properly. One idea could be their application to replace conventional bus stop buttons!