Top technologies for running a smarter family home

  • How smart scales can balance the benefits of a healthy lifestyle
  • Shining a new light on ways to wake up
  • Smarter entertainment systems bring the family together

 

 

Smart home technologies have come of age and are no longer strictly for the serious tech head.  We caught up with three of our favourite UK bloggers to find out what devices they’re using at home and the benefits they provide. 

profile photo of Holly Brokwell brushing her teeth

Holly Brockwell, editor of Gadgette

 

A smarter way to brush your teeth

photograph of a toothbrush

I never imagined I’d have strong feelings about a toothbrush, but my smart electric toothbrush is now one of my favourite gadgets. It comes in a travel case with a USB port so I can charge it from my laptop when I’m on the go, and even better, at home it charges wirelessly in a glass. It tells me exactly how long to brush my teeth for, and the front displays a menu of cleaning programmes to choose from. I love it. As soon as I got one, I bought one for my partner too.
 

 

Weighing up lifestyle choices with smart scales

someone standing on a set of weighing scales

Monitoring your weight can be a chore, but smart scales make it much easier for me. My scales connect to my calorie-tracking app, so I have a long-term record of weight changes alongside data from my fitness tracker about the activity I’ve been doing. This means I can see exactly how food and exercise affects my weight, which helps me make better lifestyle choices. 

 

 

Jen Walshaw with her children

Jen Walshaw, Mum in the Mad House and A Thrifty Mum

 

 Active heating for active families

someone using the hive app

Being a busy mum to two boys (aged 10 and 11) I love it when I find a gadget or technology that can save me time and money – particularly when it makes our family life simpler. 

Active heating sounded like something from the future before we got it, but now I wouldn’t be without it. Using a mobile app we can adjust the heating in the house, see what temperature it is, turn the water heating on and off, and much more. We can set our water and heating schedule precisely in real time, to the degree and by the minute, making it very convenient while helping to save money on bills.

 


A gentler wake up call with lights

someone changing the light setting on their bedside lamp

We all have ‘wake up lights’ in our bedrooms, including my boys. These lights simulate dawn, which helps wake us up in the morning and is a must for my ten-year-old night owl. The gradual light starts low and gets slowly brighter, gently pulling you out of a slumber. Gone are my mornings of a rude awakening from a blaring alarm clock or pressing the snooze button over and over again. The lights are also perfect for helping you get to sleep as you can set them to slowly dim, simulating a sunset, so it’s the perfect way to relax night-loving creatures like my youngest. 

 

 

portrait of donna wishart and her family outside

Donna Wishart, What The Redhead Said

 

Smart TV – the entertainment hub of the home

little boy watching spongebob

Our family has grown up using smart technology and the children don't remember a time without it. Our smart TV is an integral part of our daily lives as it lets the children watch their favourite shows whenever they want using many different apps. 

They have all of their entertainment options in one place, accessed through the TV. It's definitely the hub of the home. The smart TV lets us interact so much more as a family, watching shows we all love together.

 

Combining play and learning with apps

two young children sitting on an armchair together on smart tablets

Occasionally there's something different the children want to watch or a game they want to play. At these times they use their tablets. They have lots of child friendly apps – I disable the in-app purchases. We set a time limit to make sure they have variety in how they spend their playtime. The children love playing educational games on their tablets – it’s great to know that they can learn through the combination of play and technology.

 

 

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