With the many advanced technologies on the market today – from tablets to e-readers, smartphones to PCs – it might seem like technology is overrunning your life. However, some of the coolest inventions of 2013 were designed with convenience in mind. Check out these new tech gadgets that use technological advances to help you simplify your life.
A Thermostat That Learns
For a long time, your choice in thermostats was limited to simple manual dials. Then programmable thermostats came along, enabling you to specify when to turn your heat or A/C on or off every day. This certainly helped make life easier – except for those times when the weather or your routine varied. How many times have you had to re-adjust your so-called “convenient” programmable thermostat because it wasn’t on an appropriate setting?
The next generations of household thermostats aren’t just programmable – they learn. According to Refinery 29, the Nest Learning Thermostat learns your schedule over time and adjusts your household temperature accordingly. You can even adjust the device with your smartphone so you don’t even have to get out of your warm bed in order to turn the heat on.
The Most Universal Remote
Again, you used to have two options when it came to controlling your home theater system. You could have one remote for each device (TV, DVD player, BluRay Player, cable box, speakers, etc) cluttering up your living room. Or you could attempt to incorporate all your devices into a universal remote that, invariably, lost some or many of the functions you needed to maintain full control of your electronics.
Logitech’s response to this battle of the remotes? Create the Harmony 650, a universal remote that you program using your computer through a USB cable, enabling you to fine-tune its settings. The LCD screen on the remote helps you keep control over your devices easily and efficiently, according to How Stuff Works.
Control Your Allergies
If you suffer from hay fever or other environmental allergies, you probably keep an eye on your local news all summer and try to stay inside on days with poor air quality or high pollen counts. Unfortunately, the air quality measurements available through the news may be accurate for the location of the news station, but not for your neighborhood. With The Egg, an air quality receiver that measures your local air quality through a sensor you place outside, you can know exactly what the air will be like when you step outdoors. With better air quality data, you can make better decisions about whether to head outside to mow the lawn, or stay indoors and protect your lungs.
Feed the Dog from Afar
Dogs are opportunistic eaters. If you’ve ever left a bag of dog food out where your pet can access it, you know that they’ll eat themselves sick rather than exercise control over their appetite. This evolutionary trait, designed to encourage them to eat to reserve fuel for later, can be frustrating for a pet owner. You can’t leave food out in the morning for your dog to eat at dinner time on a day you’re going to be out late. You either have to change your plans, run home, or deal with a crank and hungry puppy when you finally walk through the door.
Not so with the Pintofeed. This food receptacle connects to your smartphone via app and enables you to dispense food for your dog from afar when you aren’t home to feed him yourself. You can make sure your pet always gets fed on-time, no matter what your own schedule is like (Popular Mechanics).
The world went crazy last year when Google announce the development of Google Glass. However much buzz that invention generated, rest assured that many other new devices have also come out on the market recently. They don’t let you post to Facebook with the blink of an eye; they do make your life more convenient in a variety of ways.