Wireless Products
some can be life-changing

Some wireless products are interesting, some are unusual and some are just plain useful. Here we showcase ten that are all of these… and more.  These products work by sending and receiving occasional, short, low-power wireless transmissions to carry information from one device to another… when wires won’t do.

Here they are, in no particular order.

#1 Wireless Lights

Imagine being able to control your house lights while on holiday overseas, using your Smartphone… or perhaps you’re at home and just want to dim the lights without getting out of your chair. Now you can, with remotely-controllable ‘long-life’ wireless bulbs.

These are much less expensive to run than conventional bulbs. You can turn them on, adjust the brightness or turn them off with a hand-held remote control or your Smartphone.

Light bulbs hadn’t changed much since the first commercial bulb was invented by Thomas Edison in 1879. But now, LED lighting and wireless technology have come together to produce the smart lightbulb. This is one of those new  wireless products that has a lot of potential.

The ‘smarts’ are built right into the bulb and these networked wireless light systems are ‘plug and play’ - no special installation required.

If you can change a light bulb you can convert to wireless lighting yourself.

Simply replace some, or all, of your conventional light bulbs with wireless LED lights, let your controller link to them and you’re up and running.

And compared to conventional incandescent bulbs, LED lights ‘live’ several times longer and only cost about 10% as much to run.

Learn more about the benefits of Wireless Lights here

#2 Wireless e-book readers

Imagine being able to carry hundreds of books in your bag to any part of the world… yet all you’re carrying is something the size of a thin slice of bread. How convenient!

With e-book readers this can become reality - you can download books to read anytime, and often anywhere.

Now you can read what you want, when you want to. Out in the car and left your reading glasses behind? No problem. Increase the text size or use the ‘text-to-voice available on some readers, and let the reader tell you the story.

And e-book readers can be life-changing. You have wireless access to e-book shops and libraries wherever you have wireless coverage. You can browse an on-line bookshop and download an inexpensive book to an e-reader in a minute.

For convenient reading on the go, you can also load your own content into it as an alternative to printing it out. Next time you’re sitting in the car waiting for the kids, take out the reader and read. Make these potentially wasted times productive.

If you have a child who doesn’t like to read… e-book readers have the potential to change reluctant readers into enthusiastic ones.

Learn more about wireless e book readers here

#3 Mail box alarm

Don’t waste your time walking to an empty mail box. This mailbox alarm will tell you when something has been delivered. It’s one of those wireless products that can become indispensable

  • If you or someone you know is elderly and has limited mobility
  • If you are expecting something valuable to be delivered
  • When the weather is poor
  • If the mail delivery time is irregular
  • If you can’t see the mail box
  • If mail boxes are being tampered with

This product would make a really useful gift for an elderly person or someone with limited mobility who struggles to get to the mail box.

#4 Networked wireless smoke alarms

Imagine if all your home smoke alarms could actually talk and tell you when smoke is detected, perhaps in your youngest child’s bedroom. Everyone in your house could be alerted at once by the same message, meaning little time is wasted and lives may be saved.

Wireless technology makes this possible.

If one alarm goes off they all go off, alerting everyone else that smoke has been detected… and where it’s been detected. A programmed synthesised voice emitted from all the alarms tells everyone which room the fire is in.

The alarms wirelessly connect to each other and, if any one alarm detects smoke, it sends a message to all the others in the network, so these too can raise the alarm before the smoke has even reached them.

There are other options too... such as adding a wireless bridge that also 'connects to the network', wirelessly receives an alarm from the smoke detectors and may be used to...

  • automatically turn on lights to illuminate your escape route, or...
  • notify you if you are away from home. 

Obviously this is a much better option than relying on your neighbours to act when they see the smoke... after all, they may not be at home either.

#5 Infrared remote control extender

Most of us would like to keep electronic items, such as TV decoders and video recorders, out of sight. They don’t exactly enhance our environment, and if we could hide them in a cupboard or spare room we would.

But then your infrared (IR) remote wouldn’t work anymore. The invisible IR light  beam that carries your commands to a video recorder, TV decoder or other device such as home theatre, can’t penetrate opaque objects such as walls and doors, or work around corners.

And have you ever wanted to control an overhead projector from the back of a church or hall but found the IR remote didn’t have enough range?

You don’t always need to know how some wireless products work, but it can be useful to have some understanding.

This one is simple.

It converts the IR remote’s command signal into a wall-penetrating (or distance-extending) wireless transmission that sends exactly the same information that would have been sent via the IR transmission. On the other side of the wall (or other end of the hall) the wireless signal is received and converted back to the original Infrared command signal. This is coupled to the IR sensor on the device you want to control.

Learn more about the Remote Control Extender here

#6 Wireless baby monitor with camera

Some wireless products can really give you peace-of-mind.

Imagine how reassuring it would be to go out for dinner yet  be able to watch and hear your baby sleep… on your Smartphone, at the restaurant. You’d really be able to relax, knowing your child had settled with the babysitter.

Or if your partner is out of town or even overseas with work – no need to miss out on seeing their baby sleeping. Whether in Tonga or Timbuctu they can still see their child settled and peaceful.

No need to turn the light on. The baby is illuminated with invisible infrared light.

#7 Selective electronic cat door

Sick of the neighbours’ cats coming into your house and eating your cat’s food? Now you can keep them, and other wildlife out, while allowing your own cat, or cats, exclusive right of entry with wireless identification.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) lets your cats in – keeps other animals out.

However we don’t know of any wireless products that guarantee that your cat can snack at the neighbour’s house without detection.

#8 Electronic dog fence with wireless collar

Give your dog limited freedom without physical constraint – your dog will learn the boundaries.  

Having trouble keeping your dog at home? Or maybe you’d love to have a dog but haven’t got a fence to keep it confined.

There are a number of wireless products for pets available and Your problem may be solved with a system which doesn’t necessarily require a fence to keep your dog in. Even without a physical fence you can humanely train your dog to stop wandering the neighbourhood and end up in the dog-catcher’s truck. 

A fence could cost you hundreds of dollars. An invisible fence costs a fraction of this.

No problem if you have more than one dog. You can get individual collars.

#9 Pool temperature sensor

Do you keep running outside to check the temperature of your pool before you take the plunge? Now you can save yourself the time and effort.

This remote temperature monitor will tell you and take out the guess work. It works like this… an electronic  thermometer floats on top of the pool and sends an occasional wireless message to a receiver inside your house so you can check the temperature without having to go out to the pool all the time.

#10 Wireless heart rate monitor

Are you serious about exercising?

This is one of those wireless products that lets you meet your exercise goals without wires and without overdoing it and putting yourself at risk. It lets you take control when you’re working out.

An easy-to-fit wireless armband sensor measures your heart rate and other information and transmits it over a Bluetooth wireless connection to a Smartphone or Tablet.

These devices can also measure distance and the amount of calories you burn… in real time. Load your favorite music onto it and you’re good to go.

Go where?

If your Smartphone or tablet has GPS and the right ap, you can even map a running course and record your pulse rate against position as you progress.

There are new life-changing wireless products being developed all the time and we’ll add more examples as we come across them.

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