While it may ultimately prove to be too difficult to get a woman who still “dials on the Internets” to live “My connected life,” I love my mother far too much to let the connected revolution pass her by. So this Mother’s Day my goal is to introduce her to connected devices—or at least bring her up to speed on some great new devices the editors have had a chance to get our hands on lately.
Some would say that I’ve already given her the gift of education by signing her up for a subscription to Connected World. But given the fact the only thing she has commented on thus far after five issues has been my “nice picture” I see that this effort while require a bit more hand-holding than I initially thought.
How about a connected photo frame? Every mother loves to get pictures. My brother and I are always sending over new pictures via email. But why not get her more involved with the photo-sharing process?
How about the KODAK PULSE digital frame? All it would take would be to create an email address for her frame and it is set up to receive new pictures either from her computer or her phone. The 7-inch., 800×600 frame is nicely sized and contains some smart features like a sharp touchscreen that would allow her to scroll through images and view slideshows with her finger, as well as the ability to automatically link to friends and photo albums on Facebook. Mom loves Facebook these days.
Or we have the CEIVA Pro 80. It only needs to be set up once (good for mom), and then the built-in connectivity enables instant photo streaming and unlimited photo storage in the cloud (“the cloud” will simply confuse her, so I will say online). Physical connections through a phone line or a broadband adapter are also possible. CEIVA can also stream news and the local weather straight to the frame. I would be her hero if I could get the frame to stream weather updates from her favorite weekend trip destination, the Wisconsin Dells. But on second thought, such freedom may prompt her to call me with Dells weather updates more frequently than she does now. Oh well—you can never get tired of more calls from mom.
The CEIVA frame would allow her to send and receive photos from anywhere in the world, and it will seamlessly automate the upload process.
Or perhaps it’s a fitness device for mom this Mother’s Day. My mother blew me away earlier this year when she told me that she joined the local health club. So perhaps I can enhance that experience for her with a cool device that keeps track of her workout. My mother doesn’t have a smartphone, so apps are out of the question. Something like the BodyBugg seems to be a bit too feature-rich for her.
I recently had a chance to review the Wireless Complete Health Monitoring System from A&D Medical. In all there were three devices: a wireless activity monitor, a connected scale, and a wireless automatic blood-pressure monitor. It even has an online dashboard where she could track her data from each of the three devices. She would definitely like the activity tracker, which she just affixes to her shoe and it tracks her steps. The blood-pressure monitor would come in handy too. Something like this not only makes it fun to workout but can also come in handy for monitoring your health.
Of course a GPS system is always an option. Dad is the navigator in the family, and mom admittedly is no good with directions. But why not put the power of positioning back into her hands with a GPS?
There are so many models from which to choose. You can go the pricey route with a device like the Garmin nuvi 3790T ($349.99), or the more affordable route with something like The Magellan RoadMate 3045 ($189.99).
My guess is that my mother won’t mind which I choose. But she is always impressed by the out of the ordinary, so perhaps I will wait until GPS comes to market in the form a watch or embedded into apparel, as predicted by ABI Research.
In any case, you really cannot go wrong with any of these products. If your mother is anything like mine, she isn’t expecting anything for Mother’s Day except a nice card. But what fun is that? Besides, what better chance to be her hero on Mother’s Day than to explain things like cloud computing and wireless data streaming?