Designer insights with Ion Smith

Ion Smith set up Cyberhomes, who specialise in home automation and entertainment. They design bespoke installations for homes, offices and yachts. Based in Oxfordshire their team is made up of industry-leading experts and engineers in all aspects of home automation and entertainment, from cinema to lighting and heating control. We are proud to present the designer insights of Ion Smith.

Designer Insights - Ion Smith

Image Credit: 1) Cyberhomes 2) Samsung driving the move to 4K Ultra HD TVs with high dynamic range (HDR) 3) Savant Pro the beautiful easy-to-use home control interface 4) Amina 'plaster-over' speakers don't impact on room design 5) Nexus21 lift hides appliances when not in use

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1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?

Cyberhomes is a smart home technology company that works very closely with interior designers and architects to ensure that installing the latest automation, control and audio/visual technology doesn’t spoil the aesthetic design of the living spaces. We move as much of the equipment out of rooms as possible, so Blu-ray players, Sky boxes, amplifiers etc are all moved to a plant room or dedicated rack space. That just leaves the things you need to see (TVs) and hear (speakers) in the living spaces. Even their impact on the room design can be minimised through the use of bespoke cabinetry, acoustically-transparent fabrics and motorised mounts that hide TVs out of view when not in use.

2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?

Getting a thorough understanding of the likes and dislikes of every member of the household. Are they into blockbuster movies or romcoms? Is music something for background ambience or dedicated listening? How do they like to entertain friends and family?

3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?

It’s great to work with designers who understand how technology can enhance a home rather than shy away from it. We’ve found working with Camilla Leech from Element Studios Design and the whole team at Pippa Paton design to be inspirational in their approaches.

4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?

Watching my 8-month old baby boy’s face when introduced a new audio or visual experience; such as seeing bubbles floating down above his head for the first time or hearing a dog bark for the first time.  

5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?

I guess you could say we have the classic technology company story. My business partner and I literally started 11 years working from my garage. We’ve grown steadily to be one of the major players within the UK home technology professional installation industry. Our advice…always strive for perfection and be proud of your work.