Could a super high-tech carpet stop burglars in their tracks?

A carpet that alerts you to potential intruders, cleans itself and repels pet hair – sounds ideal to us

What do you want from your carpet? Comfort and warmth underfoot? A welcoming feel in your living spaces? Or perhaps you’re hoping for a super-duper carpet that will stop burglars in their tracks? Yep, we know it sounds strange, but a recent survey has revealed that this is exactly what 64% of carpet owners want from their sisal or berber. So scratch the burglar alarm – your carpet could be your saviour in an emergency.

Rather than an alarm, which many felt would just be ignored, a carpet detection system would send a signal to your mobile phone at the first sign of an intruder. Respondents also felt that they would like to be able to see where burglars are or had been.

The ability to detect intruders wasn’t the only technological wish for carpets of the future. Of the 2,185 homeowners surveyed by interiors brand Hillarys, 60% would love self-cleaning carpets, 51% a design that repels pet hair and 49% hoped for carpets that would moderate the temperature of the room. Lastly, 44% voted for shag piles that lengthen and shorten according to the season. All sounds pretty awesome to us, we must say – who wouldn’t want a carpet that makes your life easier?

And if all this seems a bit far-fetched, a carpet with burglar detection is probably not as far away as you imagine. Think back to not so long ago when it would have seemed strange to suggest that we’d all carry a mini computer with us and be able to do our supermarket shop from a train, post photos immediately after taking them, or find a date at the push (slide) of a button.

Basically, it is possible. Smartphones are playing a bigger and bigger role in the home, with more and more of us using our mobiles to control everything from temperature to budgets and shopping lists. Plus carpets have multiple layers, which are ideal for hiding away hundreds of tiny sensors, capable of detecting anything weightier than your beloved dog or cat.

As for repelling the aforementioned pet’s hair, we’re not sure how that will work yet - but we can dream.