Let’s be honest, the prospect of living in a fully-automated home is a dream on par with driving a flying car and colonizing Mars. However, with virtual assistants like Google Home and Amazon Echo, that dream is slowing but surely becoming an affordable reality. Even the most tech-adverse late-adopters have begun controlling everything from thermostats to lights with nothing more than their voice. Since the holiday season, smart home setups have become so common place that even seniors have started putting them in their homes. And that level of adopting is nothing to scuff at.
However, because the technology has become such a staple in homes around the country, the thrill of innovation has somewhat dissipated in those of us excited about the future of the smart home. Sure, WiFi-enabled lights and Bluetooth speakers are cool, but when your grandparents are the ones helping you set them up, you know it’s time to mix things up a bit. Fortunately, we’ve got a bevy of interesting, unique, downright innovative products for you below that will take your smart home to the next level.
As one of the first smart devices consistently found in the home, robot vacuums (colloquially referred to as Roombas, regardless of brand) were the catalyst to a wide range of smart home innovations. However, since its invention in 2002, robot vacuums have decidedly lost their luster in the eyes of tech enthusiasts. Fortunately, this technology has been dramatically improved on for those of us without carpeted living rooms.
From iRobot, the same company that developed the Roomba, comes the Braava Mopping Robot! Compared to its suck-prone counterpart, the Braava is dedicated to making sure your floors are actually clean, rather than just partially vacuumed. Whether you’re looking for a light dusting or a full-on wet mop, your smart home will be in tip top shape thanks to this little guy.
Let’s be honest, the best part about staying home for the night is that you get to enjoy all the free water you want. However, with tap water remaining a skeptical bet at best and $20 water filters doing little to assuage your concerns, staying hydrated can be quite the gamble. Fortunately, there’s an alternative.
Currently exploding on Indiegogo, the rOcean is an eco-friendly water filter that does a lot more than provide you with a clean source of drinking water. You’ll be able to carbonate, flavor, and even enhance your water with electrolytes so you’ll be feeling healthier by the minute. It’s even compatible with Amazon Echo and Google Home, so you won’t have to go through a lot of trouble to stay hydrated.
Smart Sous Vide
Cooking is hard. Even with a little bit of help, putting together a delicious, healthy meal takes hours on a good day. While there have been a bevy of smart appliances designed to store your food, smart home technology hasn’t made much of an impact on the actual cooking of food. Unless, of course, you’ll take your meal sous vide.
“Set it and forget it” has been a popular phrase in the smart home world, and Nomiku exemplifies this philosophy to a tee. Just clip the device to the side of a pot of water, set the temperature, and you’ll enjoy some of the most delicious meals you’ve ever had. Plus, with WiFi connectivity, the devices does a whole lot more. Along with paired app Tender, you’ll be able to find recipes from other users, and Nomiku will set the temperature and timer for you, getting rid of all that pesky prep work.
The furniture industry is dramatically lacking when it comes to the smart home space. You arguably spend a lot more time in places like your office, and a little connectivity would do a lot to improve productivity. Plus, with all that technology, an easy-to-use standing desk seems like it should be an obvious possibility. So where is this smart desk of the future? Oh, it’s right here.
The Stir Kinetic Desk is so much more than just smart home technology; it’s primary purpose is to keep you healthy while allowing you to get as much work done as possible. With decidedly advanced software, the desk will raise and lower as you see fit to make sure your posture, blood circulation, and overall health are better than great. It even reminds you when to stand or sit and will keep track of your calories burned throughout the day. Plus, with integrated cord management, WiFi-connectivity, and Bluetooth enabled software, you’ll be set up for success in the long run.
Smart locks work great when you’re trying to get in and out of your home. However, with package theft remaining a huge problem in most cities around the world, finding a simple, reasonable way to get packages delivered to your home shouldn’t have to be this difficult. Fortunately, with this next product, it isn’t.
After making a killing on Kickstarter, BoxLock Home is ready to change the package delivery game for the better. Here’s how it works: a delivery driver approaches your front door, clicks the button on top of BoxLock, scans the tracking number bar code, et voila! Your package is safely and soundly delivered without the hassle. Additionally, with WiFi-enabled notifications, you’ll know exactly when your package arrives.