I remember when I was a young girl and my dad told me about an exhibit he saw at the 1964 World Fair in Forrest Hills. He said that in the future, there would be robots in everyone’s home and that life would be a lot easier.
“Could you imagine a color TV in every room?” he said to me. We had black and white sets in every room. The only color television was in my parent’s bedroom.
Fast forward forty year and now, we are finally at a time when our lives are starting to be connected. We’re not there yet, but soon.
With the introduction of the Amazon Echo, Hue Lighting and Whirlpool Smart Appliances, you can definitely see where the world is heading. And you know what? I like it!
As an original Google Glass explorer and early adopter of everything technology, we recently purchased the Amazon Echo for our home. The device sits in my kitchen and enables me to hear about the local news, weather and even put shopping items on the list, which links with my app on my Samsung Smart Phone. (This is the best thing that ever happened to shopping for me because I typically forget my list and then buy so much stuff I don’t need!)
The Echo, names Alexa, also answers questions that she surfs the internet to find and even tells me a daily joke. Most of the time, the jokes aren’t funny but it does put a smile on my face.
In addition to that, she works in conjunction with the HUE light bulb, which I have connected around my TV set in my television room. I also have HUE lights in the ceiling. A handy app enables me to change the tones around the set and throughout the room. It definitely enhances the effect of the program. Interestingly, Alexa works with Hue to turn the lights on and off.
Could you imagine as Alexa develops, how much we will be able to control? Think about it.
You walk in the house and say, “Alexa, turn on the oven.” And within minutes, you are pre-heated and ready to pop in your evening entrée. Or you say, “Alexa, turn on the dishwasher.” And your dishes are ready for your upcoming meal.
There’s been a lot of talk about how your Smart Phone will be the primary driver of everything connected within your home. I don’t believe that will be the case. I think soon, within our near future, there will be a wearable device that will control everything in the home.
Why don’t I think it will be the Smart Phone? Simply, the smart phone is not on you so you are more apt to leave it behind. How many times have you gone out to dinner and forgot to bring it with you? Or how many times have you left it somewhere and then scrambled frantically to find it? It happens more than not and that’s why it makes more sense for this new device to be on you at all times – a smart watch? Smart glasses? Smart belt? The future is the only thing that knows what it will be for sure but I know it won’t be the Smart Phone.
And what about all those Smart Cars coming off the line? The Ford vehicle that drove from LA to New York City without a driver was an awesome trial. If these cars can drive by themselves, then they can also be connected with the home. Imagine driving up to your home and telling the car to turn on your lights and your air conditioning or heating device? Could you imagine how much money and energy you would be saving?
Then there is the Whirlpool devices, which I saw for the first time at CES in Las Vegas in January 2015. Every one of their products now have a smart function that corrolates with an app on your iphone or android device. Pretty cool stuff!
Although many of these devices are still new and most people don’t have them incorporated into their homes, they will be there and they will make life easier and better.