A few years ago, you would find a nest of cables and chaos when you glanced at our TV, mostly because it took a bit of trickery and work to get a PC hooked up to your TV so you could watch TV or movies, or even use your TV as a monitor. But all that is changing very rapidly — and fewer cables are needed than ever before. You’ve got to love that — and this guest post about implementing some of these high-tech goodies that no longer have to cost a fortune!
We’re at a very exciting time in terms of media. In the past couple decades, we’ve moved from a mere selection of three stations on TV to having web-enabled smartphones, high speed broadband, smart TVs, and unlimited options for programming.
The cost of these devices has dropped off incredibly, too. This means that a family, even on a small budget, can digitize their home and turn it into media powerhouse.
Here are some of the affordable options for going high-tech in your household:
Smart TVs are a great addition to the home if the family is movie and TV buffs. The great thing about these types of newer TVs is their built-in app capabilities. The apps give you a broad range of access to the Web, stream music and movies, display pictures, and essentially use it much like a fully-functional computer. In combination with DVR, a smart TV will quickly become the center of attention.
Once you begin adding up the devices, you’ll realize how quickly you’ll eat into your Internet bandwidth. A fast and reliable broadband connection is essential for those families with gamers and streaming media fanatics. The prices for these services are on par with what you’re used to paying for cable. You can also do a quick search using a site like http://VerizonSpecials.com to find the best deals in your area. With FiOS you’ll still gain hundreds of channels and VOIP phone options.
We’ve seen all types of devices with web capabilities hit the market, whether it’s streaming set top boxes or photo displays where you can upload media and have it display much like a screensaver. The best of these items, without a doubt, are the Roku, Apple TV, and Google’s Chromecast. These devices will give you access to great media services like Netflix, Amazon Video, and other built-in apps like games, music, and trivia. For less than $100, you can purchase one of these streaming devices. Often times, you can link the accounts between each TV, which means you’re not paying for multiple subscriptions for separate rooms.
eReaders and Tablets
Books and computers can begin to take up a lot of space in the home. These two examples are great items to have around the house, but we’ve come a long way and there are plenty of options to get this type of entertainment at a rock bottom price. If you’d like to affordably digitize, you should consider skipping over these older mediums and go with eReaders and tablets like an iPad or Kindle. These options will cut down on the clutter plus purchased media on these devices come at a fraction of the cost versus buying from the retail stores.
A fridge that can access the web and keep you updated about what you have in stock? They’re already here. What about a washing machine that will alert you once your clothes are done? Yup, they have that too. Or a garage door that can be closed remotely? Our appliances are getting smarter than ever and with it comes better efficiency through the ability to monitor power consumption and usage within many built-in dashboards on these types of appliances. When it comes to media the same benefits apply. Accessing the web, keeping up-to-date with your social media accounts, reading recipes and reviews, all great options to keep you entertained when working on dinner.
What ways would you digitize your home?