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How Cocoon uses AI to become your digital guard dog

How Cocoon smart home security system uses AI and Machine Learning to become your Digital Guard Dog and keep your home safe
Cocoon Labs

Cocoon’s home security system is smart. Not just an IoT or ‘smart home’ gadget, it has inbuilt artificial Intelligence too. Ever Cocoon is smart enough to learn about the home it looks after. Using AI, it understands what the normal infrasound levels are in your empty home, then if it detects something unusual it can alert you.

Through AI, Cocoon is always learning to better protect you, your home and your family. Like a puppy that learns to become your trusted guard dog, Cocoon’s AI learns over time. It doesn’t come pre-trained because each home is unique. Once you plug in your Cocoon, connecting it through the app (free on iOS and Android), it starts getting smarter. Learning what’s normal for your home when it’s empty, and how that compares to when it’s occupied.

What Cocoon is learning

Cocoon listens for sounds at frequencies that humans can’t hear, infrasound vibrations in the air. This means Cocoon detects movement throughout your home, not just in the room it’s placed in. It learns to better protect your home by comparing two things:

What the infrasound is typically like in your empty home
What the infrasound is like when someone is entering your home, learnt by sensing movement in the first 15 minutes of your home being occupied.

The comparison is important. Machine learning needs two sets of data that it compares to answer a question. In this case, when armed, Cocoon is constantly asking; “are these sounds worrying enough to send an alert”.

By listening to the infrasound during the first 15 minutes when your home is occupied, your Cocoon learns what it sounds like when people are in your home. Cocoon is not listening to the what we can hear, it’s not listening to conversations or music. It’s listening for vibrations in the air as people move through your home.

If your home sounds occupied, when it should be empty, Cocoon knows something isn’t right. It then sends an alert to the phone of you, and everyone in your household. You can watch a live HD video and decide whether or not to sound what T3 called a “pant soiling” 90+ dB alarm.

How you can help Cocoon to learn, fast.

We designed Cocoon to be home security without the hassle. This means that, for most people, if you set up your Cocoon at home and go about your daily life, it just works. It’s that simple. But there are a few things you can do to help your Cocoon be the very best at protecting your home that it can be.

Make sure that if Cocoon thinks your home is empty, it is empty.

You can do this by:

  • Adding everyone who regularly visits your home, and is old enough to have their own phone, to your Cocoon app
  • Checking that everyone in your Cocoon household has their location services enabled. This not only improves learning, but means your Cocoon automatically stands on guard when your home is empty and disarms when someone gets home
  • Making sure that Cocoon doesn’t think you’ve just got home when you’re not there. You can do this by:
    • Going straight home during that first week when you’re Cocoon is settling in. Cocoon uses the location of your phone to know when to automatically guard your home, and to stand down when you get back. The most accurate location services currently available use an area of 150m around a specific point. This means it will disarm when you’re nearly home, and won’t send an alert as you push open the door.
    • If you pop into a neighbour’s house or visit a local newsagent on your way home, Cocoon may think you’ve just got back when you haven’t. It will listen for occupied infrasound over 15 minutes, to understand what your home sounds like with people inside, but your home will be empty. This is most important in the first few days to make sure you don’t skew how it detects intruders.
  • Resisting the urge to over-act when you get home. This may sound strange, but we’ve had customers try to help Cocoon learn faster by getting home and banging around the house. To create increased levels of infrasound over those first few days. This can actually make your Cocoon less sensitive, as it will think that the level of infrasound is very high when someone is in your home.

Avoiding interference

As Cocoon detects movement through sound, certain things in your home may trigger alerts and interfere with its learning. This is because it’s better to be safe than sorry! Certain levels of sound are always be deemed to signify a risk. Rather than learn to ignore them, Cocoon will always alert you, just in case.

To avoid interference, we recommend you do not place your Cocoon near to a:

  • Fridge or freezer
  • Air conditioning unit
  • Air vents
  • Fish, lizard or other pet’s tank
  • Hamster, rabbit or other pet’s cage
  • Clock that ticks or chimes loudly, such as a grandfather clock
  • Windowsill facing a busy road

Don’t install a new Cocoon just before going away

When you set up a new Cocoon, it takes a few days to settle into its new home. In these early days, it is building up an idea of what your home should sound like when empty so that if something breaks that normality it can alert you. During that time you may end up receiving a few more alerts than usual, this is because it’s still learning. Like a puppy training to be a guard dog, your Cocoon’s accuracy improves as it learns.

The average time for a Cocoon to build up an accurate picture of a new home it’s protecting is 6 days. In certain unusual scenarios, it takes longer. We explain below the best ways to help your Cocoon learn quickly. With these tips, you may be able to train your Cocoon into an effective digital guard dog in just a few days.

We’re here to help

In most cases, your Cocoon will just work. Installation is easy, just plug it in and connect it to your app (free to download on iOS and Android). While it’s learning you may get extra alerts, but within a matter of days, your Cocoon will have learnt about your home. Avoiding the hassle of false alarms and sending your smart alerts when you need to know.

These tips are to help you speed up Cocoon’s learning process, making it easier to help your Cocoon to have a speedy start in learning to better protect your home. If you have any questions at all, our brilliant support team are ready to help. You can email them on [email protected], or chat with them on our website.