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What’s Coming Down the Road in Technology?

Raise your thumb if you have a smart phone.  These days the great majority of us have smart phones. 

Let’s consider some less-usual devices that might be on the way to the majority of homes.

Have you heard of a doorbell-camera device that monitors whether people are at your front door? It connects to an app on your phone allowing you to see home activity from anywhere with Internet access.  You also can talk directly to the person at the door.

Would you trust an auto-driving car to get you to work? How about getting shipments delivered to your door by drones?

The hottest technology devices on the market are voice-enabled speakers.  Do you have a home assistant (such as Amazon’s “Alexa”) in your home?  Alexa can help you with everything from finding a radio station to calling a taxi or Uber for you. So far, Amazon has seven Alexa-type devices ranging from $50 to $230

In response to the popularity of Alexa, Google is now launching new devices, including smart home speakers named “Mini” and “Google Home Max” at $49 to $399. These speakers allow you to search for information and also sync your other devices together. The use of these devices is expected to grow to 7 billion by 2020.

Technology is promoting major changes in society with its roles that range from convenience to education to safety. Among the upcoming innovations will be “Augmented Reality,” which are being promoted by Apple and Google.  These tools will range from the mundane (a mobile tape measure to check what will fit in your home) to augmented reality glasses. 

Any Downsides to Ever-changing Technology?

Technology is all around us and these tools can help us in many ways, but technology is not without downsides.  If you have children or grandchildren, be aware that too much technology can affect their brain development.  Too much digital media among children and teens (and perhaps adults) could hamper their ability to develop and sustain relationships.  Some studies show that technology may alter the structure of the developing brain and not always positively.

According to a 2016 statement by the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents need to be aware of how much, when and where children use digital media. These are a few of the recommendations.

  • Limit time spent with technology among children ages two to five to one hour of screen time a day.  Try to watch with them and explain what they are viewing.
  • Avoid digital programs for children less than two years old.
  • Avoid using media as a way to calm a child because it could affect their ability to regulate their emotions. 
  • See https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/10/161021093834.htm  for more information

 

Reference:  Neiger, C. 2017, October. 3 Technology Trends that Could Dominate 2018. https://www.fool.com/investing/2017/10/14/3-technology-trends-that-could-dominate-2018.aspx

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