Technology Trends for Summer 2017

Looking for a clever new gadget or just want to stay up to date? Here’s our pick of the best new tech, plus a glimpse into the not-too-distant future 

Homes of the Future

Imagine having a talking fridge that tells you when you’re running out of milk and a robot to do your housework. Don’t fancy visiting your GP? No problem – you can have a ‘virtual’ assistant who will diagnose you in the comfort of your own home, and notify someone if you need help.

This is just a taste of how technology could soon be used to transform your home and revolutionise how older people live, according to a specially commissioned report by McCarthy Stone. Many of these new technologies could be available within the next 20 years. You can read the full report here.

Peace of Mind

Worried about a frail or vulnerable friend or relative? This little gadget could bring you peace of mind, while ensuring the person you’re concerned about keeps their independence. The Unforgettable Personal Alarm and GPS Tracker has a personal alarm with two-way calling, so if they need your help when they’re out, they simply press the SOS alarm button and you will immediately get a text.

As it also acts as a mobile phone, you can call them straight back. And there’s a motion sensor that will alert you if they fall. £148.99 from Live Better With Dementia.

Getting Personal

It used to be only the privileged few who could afford one, but now you, too, can have a personal assistant who will sit with you 24 hours a day, answering questions and carrying out basic tasks such as setting timers and alarms. However, your assistant is a smart but decidedly non-human, voice-activated speaker called Google Home (left), which sits on a coffee table, not a sofa. It will be available in the UK in June at around £129 from madeby.google.com.

Sleep Soundly

If you sleep with a snorer, this cleverly designed bed might be just what you both need. The 360 Smart Bed has a mattress that automatically adjusts to your sleep positions to keep you comfortable, and it can raise a sleeping person’s head to clear their airways if it detects they’re snoring. The bed can also be programmed to wake you up at the time you request...and even has a foot warmer. Its makers promise that the 360 Smart Bed will ‘redefine what people should expect from their bed’. It goes on sale later this year from Sleepnumber.