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BLUFFDALE — Maximize your time having fun in the sun with help from your smartphone. That’s right, this tech can give you back your summer! From a green sprinkler system to smart pet feeders, tech can make our lives astronomically easier this summer season.
Try all kinds of new tech from a pocket projector for movies under the stars, to lesser known gadgets like a robotic mop or a slow cooker you can control while out on an adventure with your family.
Here are six tech upgrades to enjoy the summer in style:
1. Bluetooth speaker
Music is proven to boost your mood, so why not prepare for summer fun with your favorite sunny-day jams. With portable wireless speakers, your music can follow you anywhere — no cords attached — so your digital library is always ready.
Some speakers, like the UE Megaboom, are even waterproof so the music doesn’t have to stop when the water balloons come out. Speakers that look like rocks can also add to the atmosphere of your next garden party without ruining the aesthetic.
To take it a step further, pair your speakers with a pocket projector and a sheet for a movie screen, and you’ve got your own summer backyard movie theater.
2. Kitchen gadgets
With smart innovations in the kitchen, your slow cooker and coffee pot can connect to your Wi-Fi so you can control them via your phone. Imagine a day at the lake where you can check how far along dinner is cooking right from your smartphone. These gadgets connect to your home’s Wi-Fi network, and you can control them remotely via an app on your phone.
Made some delicious cookies for dessert but are worried about them getting eaten before dinner? Put a smart motion alarm on the cookie jar to notify you on your smartphone when someone has attempted to spoil their dinner.
Going to be out a little longer than expected? Crock-Pot’s Wemo-enabled smart cooker allows you to decrease the temperature so dinner is ready when you get home.
3. Smart lawn
Keeping your lawn and garden green while sticking to an efficient watering schedule just adds another chore to the list. Adding a Wi-Fi sprinkler system can take care of that for you and even saves you money.
Products like Rachio take local forecasts, soil types and sun exposure into consideration to help avoid overwatering by auto-adjusting schedule and flow. Keep an eye out for future innovations coming next summer, like a robot to weed your garden.
4. Pet gadgets
Truth be told, we probably miss our pets almost as much as they miss us. A smart pet feeder can help reduce the stress of leaving your furry friends at home. They can schedule feedings and disperse food at designated times.
This is great for medication and older pets who need strict feeding schedules. Some pet feeders, like Feedango, even come complete with a webcam so you can check in on your pet during the day.
When your furry loved one tags along on the family adventure, you can keep them extra safe by connecting a GPS pet tracker to their collar. These gadgets can give you interactive tracking and even email alerts when your pup explores beyond your designated boundaries.
5. Cleaning tools
Summer means that sometimes all that outdoor fun gets tracked inside. Bending over to scrub, vacuum and clean isn’t fun and is also hard on your back. Let a smart device take care of those chores for you!
While robot vacuums have been staples for years, a robot mop might be a better fit if you have hardwood floors. Wet or dry mopping devices like the iRobot Braava 380t are desgined for vinyl, tile, hardwood and laminate floors.
Windows are also a part of the house often neglected after spring cleaning is over. With a window cleaning robot, you’ll always have beautiful, clean, streak-free views.
6. Mesh Wi-Fi
Having the smartest house on the block doesn’t mean anything unless you have a strong home Wi-Fi network in place. Don’t get left behind because of a slow connection or dead spots in your home.
The best foundation starts with your high-speed internet service, but the router you choose can really make or break your connection. Consider upgrading to a mesh Wi-Fi system, which uses multiple router-like devices that cover your entire home with internet connection.
Most mesh Wi-Fi systems can be controlled and monitored from your home, like Google’s version, Google Wifi. These systems come with an easy setup, parental controls and usage monitoring, all from your smartphone.
These devices will make your home smarter, but most importantly, they will make your life easier so you have more time to enjoy the warm summer weather. Not only are they helpful, but they are affordable and painless to install. So break out the swimsuit and the barbecue!
Cassie Tolhurst is a freelance writer, University of Utah graduate and wannabe world traveler. She loves to share tips and insights about online life, wearable tech and living a wanderlust life.