You could soon turn your lights on just by pointing at them

Without a shadow of a doubt, one of the most fun things to do with a voice assistant is control elements of your house. Whether that’s turning your Philips Hue lights red, or controlling your Fire TV with Alexa.

But imagine if you didn’t even have to open your mouth. If you could just point at your lights and they’d turn off, or gesture to your TV for the volume to turn up. 

Well, that may well be a reality thanks to startup Piccolo. It’s currently working on what it calls a ‘Vision Assistant’ that controls your home using cameras and an algorithm that can detect specific gestural commands. 

A house full of cameras

Now this is all still very early in the developmental stages (the founders are planning to start a crowdfunding round soon) but it does raise an interesting proposition in the smart home market. 

With Google taking Nest back under its wing, and Amazon buying Ring, the major companies in the voice assistant market already have cameras that they could put in people’s homes if this was an area they were expanding into. 

And it isn’t beyond the realms of possibility. Lighthouse already uses gestural commands, and Nest IQ security cameras are able to identify individuals by their face. 

There’s a fairly thin line between that and Google Assistant being able to see you on your Nest cam and knowing your specific gestures. Whether people will want to fill their homes with (potentially hackable) cameras is another matter entirely. 

Andrew London

Andrew London is a writer at Velocity Partners. Prior to Velocity Partners, he was a staff writer at Future plc.