CES 2018: 'U by Moen' Smart Shower System Adding Support for Apple HomeKit and Siri Voice Controls

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    One year after being announced during CES 2017, faucet brand Moen is back at CES this year with a new announcement for its "U by Moen" cloud-based, Wi-Fi enabled shower system (via CNET). The company this week revealed that the smart shower will add support for Apple's Siri and Amazon's Alexa AI assistants in the first half of 2018, letting you control water temperature and more with voice commands on connected smartphones and speakers.

    For the HomeKit integration, you'll be able to speak to your iOS devices and begin your shower ahead of time, like saying, "Hey Siri, start my shower." If you have saved water temperature presets within the Moen app, the shower will then begin to reach your desired temperature and notify you when it's ready. Siri will only work with Moen's next-generation smart shower controllers, so anyone who purchased last year's device will have to buy the new system if they want Siri controls.


    This is because the new U by Moen includes a specific MFi chip for HomeKit compatibility, despite Apple last summer updating its HomeKit specifications so that compatible smart products no longer have to include a hardware authentication chip. A Moen representative told CNET: "We are launching with the Apple Authentication Coprocessor (MFI chip) in the controller to meet the current Apple HomeKit protocol that still requires the chip."

    Besides Siri voice control, U by Moen's new system is visually similar to the first and connects to an iPhone app so you can set up to 12 customized settings for a shower. The in-shower "digital valve" includes a five-inch LCD screen and various buttons for manual temperature control, and still requires professional installation.

    There are two different versions of the next-generation U by Moen shower system, including a two-outlet model for $1,160 and a four-outlet model for $2,200.

    Article Link: CES 2018: 'U by Moen' Smart Shower System Adding Support for Apple HomeKit and Siri Voice Controls
  2. Strelok macrumors 6502a


    Jun 6, 2017
    United States
    California is going to love this one! /s

    So we went from smart fridges to smart showers. I can see some situations where this might be useful, but for the most part this seems like another attempt at shoving “smart” into any product they can.
  3. redneckitengineer, Jan 8, 2018
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2018

    redneckitengineer macrumors regular


    Oct 27, 2017
    At what point do we stop putting Alexa and “Smart” into products that don’t need it. Unless your a quadriplegic, this is a bad idea.
  4. xizdun macrumors regular

    Nov 13, 2011
    Haha, I love it. Definitely a future purchase!
  5. dukeblue219 macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2012
    I can see this being kind of neat to try once, but honestly, as much of a techie as I am, I'm over the smartification of every home appliance. Over a thousand dollars for a showerhead? What happens in five years when it stops working, or in 15 years when tech has moved on completely?

    I don't need everything in my house to be obsolete in five years.
  6. mdelvecchio macrumors 68040


    Sep 3, 2010
    Ok so in tech utopia world of Star Trek, you don’t think they can ask the computer to dial up an exact temperature shower?

    I really don’t see the problem with it. haters gonna hate...
    --- Post Merged, Jan 8, 2018 ---
    My original Nest is fine years later. In 15 years I’ll have no problem getting a replacement.
  7. Kaibelf macrumors 68020


    Apr 29, 2009
    Silicon Valley, CA
    They actually use sonic showers in Star Trek.
  8. superduperultra macrumors regular

    Nov 5, 2008
    Will be fun hacking showers in the future, gee-whiz.
  9. Baumi macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2005
    I don't mind the general idea of this (although I wouldn't pay anywhere near that much for this kind of convenience), I just don't understand why it needs to be "cloud-based". It introduces unnecessary privacy and security hassles without bringing substantial benefits to the end user.

    (Obligatory pun)Also, around here we already have cloud-based showers. They're called "rain".(/Obligatory pun)
  10. alexgowers macrumors 65816

    Jun 3, 2012
    I see zero point putting transitory tech into any products. Especially when the product is a long term, low use item. A connected TV works great but how exactly can you interact with a shower that doesn’t require you to be next to it?

    These are non starter ideas and I’m sure it must be April fools.
  11. Supermacguy macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2008
    Water and electric components don't live well together. This might work well for the first couple years. But what happens when the electronics get a leak and fry out? Or any other problem? Does water stop flowing? You only get cold water?
    On another aspect, people WILL end up wasting water if they start their shower even 30 seconds earlier than they normally start it. 100s and 1000s of gallons wasted.
  12. apparatchik macrumors member

    Mar 6, 2008
    Exactly, in a scarce water world where 1 billion people do not have access to running water, and even first world regions like California and North Dakota face droughts, having your shower pre-start (pre-start wasting resources that is), while you still lay in bed stuck replying a message, seems not just inmoral but an outright crime.
  13. utwarreng macrumors 6502


    Aug 8, 2009
    *Wife is in the shower*

    "Hey Siri, make the shower water 55 degrees"

    "Ok, I'll freeze your wife to death, but this isn't my fault."
  14. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Conceptually I love this idea. It doesn't solve any real problem for me, but neither did the remote car door FOB. But it is a nicety. When I remodeled my bathroom a few years ago maybe I would have considered it. It's really not that expensive in the scheme of things.

    But my problem with it, and why I ultimately probably would not buy it is I do not trust Apple (or any other company's home control system's) long term commitment. Apple has no problem dropping support for things. Similarly, if sales are light, I don't count on Moen to keep the system updated properly. That's a big problem when the system built into your shower.

    So, yeah, I wouldn't want to be the guinea pig here, but would be cool if a standard could be arrived at that was less proprietary.

    I've had a steam shower for 20 years. Still have the original electronic thermostat inside my shower. Electronics in showers is not new.

    I have a touch faucet in the kitchen. Yes, when the batteries die the water stops working but you can put it into manual mode so it works like a conventional faucet.

    I waste a ton of water because, ironically, energy regulations require hot water heaters to remain dormant until water is called. I have to run my shower for about 3-4 minutes before it reaches an acceptable temperature. If anything, a digital controller will save money because it can sound an alarm when a set temp is reached rather than the user guessing. I pay all my bills with my own money so I have an interest, other than conservation, to not waste water or electricity. Most people are the same -- for generations parents have been yelling at their kids "I don't own the power/water/gas/oil company." People don't willy nilly let the shower run as you say.
  15. lunarworks macrumors 65816

    Jun 17, 2003
    Toronto, Canada
    Now you don't just have to worry about someone flushing a toilet...
  16. H3LL5P4WN macrumors 65816


    Jun 19, 2010
    Pittsburgh PA
    How is this any different than standing outside your shower waiting for the water temperature to come up? If anything, this is more efficient due to to having definitive temperatures to set.

    Or are you going to tell me that you step into your shower, jerk the hot and cold on and then deal with either burning or freezing yourself?
  17. Strelok macrumors 6502a


    Jun 6, 2017
    United States
    I just set it at the middle, if it's too cold I shift it to the left and if it's too hot I shift it to the right. Maybe the reason I don't see the real value in this is because my water is at a warm temperature within 5 seconds of turning on the shower though.
  18. WWPD, Jan 8, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2018

    WWPD macrumors regular


    Aug 21, 2015
    Ten Forward
    Still waiting on the Siri based smart toilet that keeps track of my bowel movements, let's me upload them and track them in comparison to friends and family.
  19. Mac 128 macrumors 601

    Mac 128

    Apr 16, 2015
    I wonder about this. How does the shower handle sudden changes in water temperature, or when the hot water tank runs out of water at the appropriate temp, and it can't maintain a particular temp?

    Most high end thermostat controlled systems use on-demand water heaters, so this is not a problem, or a reservoir, a buffer if you will, to allow gradual changes when unable to maintain a consistent temp.

    In general a great idea, but not perfect.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 8, 2018 ---
    That's not the case with most people. Your hot water tank must be on the other side of the wall from your shower.

    I know you're making fun of this, but there would be real value to that -- not to share wi your friends and family, but for your own personal health.
  20. Defthand macrumors 6502a

    Sep 1, 2010

    Ever take a shower and think the water wasn’t warm enough, even though your significant other assures you it’s hot? And who doesn’t adjust the water temp during the shower? Having temperature presets is pointless. Your perception of the water’s temp depends on your body’s varying stasis.
  21. apparatchik macrumors member

    Mar 6, 2008
    I myself shower with cold water most of the time, even in winter, it has a lot of health benefits and you can definitely feel it, going outside doesnt feel as cold when you do it, it wakes you up, etc. Im in the minority though, my girlfriend cant hear about a cold shower hehe. To answer your question, with a "dumb" "shower system" you have to be ready to shower, walk to the shower and turn it on. Most showers are warm/comfortable enough to get in and adjust it within 10-20 seconds. With this remote "smart showers", my bet is you will be turning it on way ahead of time, maybe from the kitchen or while taking out the trash, then you get a call, then what happens? all this adds up. IMHO. You sure have heard about how much water one can save by closing the faucet while brushing your teeth. To me this smart shower means waste.

    But, hey, maybe they could integrate a sensor and turn the shower off after reaching temp if no ones in it after 10 seconds, they could make a call for helping save water.
  22. H3LL5P4WN macrumors 65816


    Jun 19, 2010
    Pittsburgh PA
    That'd also be a nifty idea.

    Me personally, my use case would be 'turn the shower on', put my contacts in and rest of my wake up routine, and step right in, saving me 2-3 minutes of fiddling with my nozzles.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 8, 2018 ---
    Ah, there you go. My shower isn't nearly as responsive.
  23. SparklyApple macrumors member

    Oct 20, 2013
    I’m sure people who’re visually impaired/blind might find it useful. As might those with mobility issues. Something that starts out as a “why on earth would anyone do this?” product can end up improving accessibility for everyone.
  24. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.
    You know, most of the world uses degrees *celsius, you would burn at 55 degrees celsius.

    *You asked for it by not adding Fahrenheit.:p
  25. MRI3T macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2013
    --- Post Merged, Jan 8, 2018 ---
    SERIOUSLY.....!!! THESE TECH COMPANIES???? What will they come up with next???!!!
    Wouldn’t it just be easier and less expensive to actually get your lazy ass outta bed and do it manually???

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