5 gadgets for a smarter home
Every man’s home may be his castle but that doesn’t mean it needs to stay in the dark ages.
New technology is released every year that can radically change how we live our lives and can leave us more time to spend with our families instead of managing the household.
From fridges connected to the internet to cleaning robots, here are five of the best innovative gadgets to help out your home.
1. Smart Fridge
Since the rise in prominence of the internet in the late 1990s, the idea of connecting our homes to the web has become an alluring goal, and there’s no product with loftier ambitions than the fridge. From monitoring the contents and ordering a shopping online, to keeping a record of our weight and diet goals, every year brings a new ambitious attempt to modernise the refrigerator which never seems to really catch on.
Samsung’s newest Wi-Fi concept fridge connects your smart phone to the large touchscreen LCD mounted on its front. This will allow you to answer and make phone calls, watch TV and even leave notes for your family; finally there might be a smart fridge that we may not be able to live without.
Find more here
2. Nest Learning thermostat
Having recently been purchased by Google, Nest has quickly become the leading brand of thermostat on the market. Connected wirelessly and controlled by your phone, Nest has been labelled as a “learning thermostat” as it regulates your family’s behaviour and habits to create a heating schedule that will reduce wasted heat and only switch on your boiler when necessary.
If that wasn’t enough new models are being released that will be able to control our ovens, and notify us if we leave them on, and can even lock our front door.
£250 at Nest
3. Philips Hue
From Thomas Edison’s first public demonstration in 1879, the light bulb hasn’t really evolved much, but if you would like them to do something different, look no further than the Philips Hue.
Wi-Fi enabled, these bulbs allow you to control their brightness and colour, from a choice of 16 million shades, from your phone or tablet. It may seem like a novelty at first but it has the potential to be much more. They can be programmed to flash or change colour when your phone rings, useful if it’s switched to silent or you have a hearing disability and they can even remember your GPS position, meaning they will switch on or off as you leave and approach your home.
Potentially life changing for the disabled and elderly and an interesting change for us all, The Philips Hue is an expensive investment but seem sure to be a staple in our homes in the years to come.
£179 at Currys
The days of rummaging around for a VHS tape to record your favourite TV program is a distant memory but for many years as we transitioned away from video to DVD there was no real way to record anything off the television.
Tivo, launched in 2000, attempted to fill this gap in the market but it took the public a few years before the concept of digitally recording and storing TV shows really caught on. Now for many telly addicts, Tivo has revolutionised how they watch television, with many users reportedly saving up their favourite shows and binging at the series’ completion. Also with Tivo boxes smart enough to make recording choices based on your own viewing habits, you may find great new programs saved without even knowing.
Available at Virgin
5. iRobot Roomba
Household chores aren’t called chores because they’re fun. While there aren’t devices to wash and clean everything in our homes (yet), hoovering can be a thing of the past. A small disc-shaped robot, The Roomba is a completely automated vacuum cleaner that can clean your carpets and floors without you lifting a finger.
Thought of as a fad when first released, it seems it may be sticking around as heavyweights Dyson have also announced their own competitor with the Dyson 360 Eye.
Could be a great, if expensive, purchase if you’re too busy or if you just hate vacuuming, now they just need to make a robot to do the ironing too!
£379 at Amazon
Are there any gadgets you couldn’t live without?
Silversurfer's Features Editor
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