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Smart toilets that you can program with your mobile phone have arrived

Here come the smart toilets, the shower toilets. They're popular in Japan because they keep you clean with bidet water cleansing and adjustable heat on the seat, instead of merely the choice of paper for wiping. And now they're coming to the USA. Actually, they've already here, and a a niche product cherished by numerous Hollywood celebrities and others interested in smart toilets that work with their smart phones. You may wish to check out the article, "Smart toilets arrive in United States" and the Wall Street Journal ( article "Smart Toilets Arrive in U.S."

Smart toilets that you can program with your mobile phone have arrived.
Photo by Handout/Getty Images

Why would you require a toilet to sync with your smart phone? Three-quarters of Japanese homes contain such toilets, most of them made by one of two companies: Toto, Japan's largest maker of so-called sanitary ware, or Lixil Corp. Toto and Kohler, a U.S. manufacturer of bathroom fittings, have been selling toilets with bidet functions in the U.S. for several years. You also may wish to check out the YouTube video, "Pee-powered cell phone points to 'smart toilet' technology."

What can a smart toilet do that you can't do for yourself and get the health benefits of some exercise?

Hot and cold water, heated or cooled seat, and self-cleaning, air-drying? Industry presents the shower toilet to America. What you do with your smart toilet is sync it with your smartphone via Bluetooth. What if someone hacked your smart phone to lockdown or otherwise interfere with the function of your smart toilet? Is your toilet vulnerable to pranks from afar?

You even can listen to your favorite music while on your toilet bowl. Truly, it's deserving of the label "the throne." These smart toilets presently are installed in three-quarters of Japanese homes. Hollywood celebrities sometimes have a penchant for buying smart toilets. But for most people, at this time, the smart toilet is a curiosity. Besides the celebrities, you have people from all walks of life willing to pay for a smart toilet.

It's a niche possession. And there are people interested in adopting technology for their toilets. But how do you train a toddler to use a smart toilet or an elderly person who needs help with hygiene to even use a smart toilet? Will it work when the electricity goes off in a storm or other event? What if the smart toilet gets stuck closed or won't flush after a mild disaster, when you need basic appliances such as a toilet? There are numerous brands of smart toilets.

American Standard's AT200 smart toilet's lid opens automatically.

The "cleansing functions" are activated when the user sits down. The seat also has adjustable heating, and when the user gets up, the lid closes and the toilet automatically flushes. There's also a "soft nightlight" around the bowl.

Toto's U.S. arm has been playing down the cleansing wizardry of its Washlets and emphasizing the environmental benefits. Some Toto toilets use less than four liters of water per flush, one-third or one-quarter the amount of some conventional toilets.

Not everyone wants to shell out more money for a bidet toilet with a hot seat to keep you warm on the throne. In fact, most people in the world don't even have a flush toilet. You may wish to check out the May 30, 2013 news release podcast, "ACS podcast: Many people still lack access to flush toilets, adequate sanitation."

Many people still lack access to flush toilets, adequate sanitation

You may wish to check out the American Chemical Society's (ACS') award-winning Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions podcast series that describes research concluding that the number of people without access to flush toilets or other adequate sanitation is almost double the previous estimate. Based on a report by Jamie Bartram, Ph.D., and colleagues in ACS' journal Environmental Science & Technology, the new podcast is available without charge at iTunes and from the ACS' Global Challenges website.

It may be the 21st century, with all its technological marvels, but 6 out of every 10 people on Earth still do not have access to flush toilets or other adequate sanitation — measures that protect the user and the surrounding community from harmful health effects — according to a recent study. More than half of the world's people don't even have a flush toilet.

Improved sanitation

Jamie Bartram and colleagues explain that the current definition of "improved sanitation" focuses on separating humans from human excrement. However, it does not include treating that sewage or other measures to prevent it from contaminating rivers, lakes and oceans. Using that definition, 2010 United Nations estimates concluded that 4.3 billion people had access to improved sanitation and 2.6 billion did not.

The new estimates used what the authors regarded as a more realistic definition from the standpoint of global health, since untreated sewage is a major cause of disease. They refined the definition of "improved sanitation" by discounting sewage systems lacking access to sewage treatment. They concluded that about 60 percent of the world's population does not have access to improved sanitation, up from the previous estimate of 38 percent.

Smart toilets have arrived in the USA from Japan

In the meantime, as smart toilets arrive in the USA from Japan, the price, for example of a smart toilet such as the Washlet, is more expensive that the type of toilet you see in most discount shopping centers. See, "TOTO Washlet 40% off Sale -‎." Are you willing to pay any price for a bidet toilet from any manufacturer? Or is your old flush toilet good enough as it is? Must you have a smart toilet to perform when you set your smart phone to various aps to 'make' your toilet do things before you even get home, such as heat up, clean itself, turn on the water, or whatever else you want a toilet to do when you're not on it?

Of course, smart toilets come in a wide variety of prices and what the toilet can do. For example, the "Toto MS990CGR#01 Neorest 600 One-Piece Toilet 1.6 GPF with Metalic Stick Remote In Cotton," has the following features at a price (at this date - May 28, 2014) of $4,372.20, reduced from $6,246.00.

Product Features :

Sleek, tankless, low profile elongated one piece toilet with integrated Washlet. Low consumption (6 Lpf/1.6 Gpf) Cyclone flushing action. SanaGloss glazing. 12" rough-in.

  • Sleek, tankless, one-piece toilet with integrated Washlet seat
  • New Cyclone Flushing system, no waiting for refill, no refill noise
  • Skirted styling with concealed trapway for easy cleaning
  • Integrated Washlet features front and rear warm water washing, automatic air dryer and deodorizer
  • SanaGloss : Super smooth, ion barrier glazing cleans your toilet bowl with every flush
  • Automatic Operation: Lid opens, closes and toilet flushes when sensor is activated.
  • Tank cover, fittings, mounting covers and Washlet included.

What you'd get for your money would be front and back rear warm water washing, automatic dryer and deodorizer, that's for the toilet, not just your backside, but the smart toilets also are known as shower toilets

The point is the glazing cleans your toilet with every flush. As for cleaning you, there's always the shower. Then again, the lid opens automatically and the toilet flushes when the sensor is activated. But what happens if the automation ever fluctuates and the lid don't open at the moment you really need it to open. There's also the not-so-smart toilet. But then again, maybe you want a smart toilet so you can program it with an application from your smart phone.

For more information, you may wish to check out the May 27, 2014 article, "The US Could Be on the Cusp of a Smart Toilet Revolution." Then again, some people prefer a so-called "Turkish toilet" or "Asian Toilet" where the toilet is more like a hole in the ground with a toilet seat that you find in public spaces where there are toilets that people pay to use, for example while touring Istanbul. Each to his and her own type of toilet.

For some with no access to fresh water nearby, the toilet is an outhouse. Then again, will most consumers in the USA realize they must need this type of toilet in their house? Think also about the price of paying an installer with tech savvy to install the toilet in your residence.

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