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Six wireless ways to make your life easier

Wireless is the way of the future and we're not talking about cordless phones and wireless mice. These gadgets offer a unique way to simplify your life.

Updated: May 12, 2015, 04.15 PM IST
Wireless is the way of the future and we're not talking about cordless phones and wireless mice. These gadgets offer a unique way to simplify your life.
Wireless is the way of the future and we're not talking about cordless phones and wireless mice. These gadgets offer a unique way to simplify your life.
Remote control clutter is a real problem and that's why universal remote controls exist. Many remotes that you get with set top boxes, AV receivers and TVs can operate multiple devices. And you also have smartphones with built in IR emitters of their own. But what if you could take things a step further?

The Broadlink RM Pro (just Rs 2,500 including shipping) is a smart wireless universal remote control system that connects to your home WiFi. You place it centrally and control it using the free app. You can configure it to work with almost any device that accepts an infrared signal. For air conditioners, air purifiers or some unusual media players, you can have the RM Pro `learn' the infrared commands as long as you have the original remote of that device.

And finally, the RM Pro offers additional features like scheduling (automatically switch onoff devices at a certain time) and auto homeaway (set it to perform actions when you reach home or leave ­ such as turn onoff the TV, air conditioning). Apart from gadgets, you can also control lights wirelessly without setting up expensive home automation solutions.

There are smart products like the remote LED bulb with built-in WiFi and Bluetooth from Enrg that connect with standard outlet and can be controlled via a smartphone. You can adjust brightness, change colours and even connect and control multiple bulbs together. You can also choose bulbs available built-in Bluetooth speakers -you can control both the light and sound from your phone via Bluetooth. It's nice to have real-time tyre pressure monitoring in the car ­ apart from being an important safety feature, it saves fuel and prolongs the life of the tyre.

Blaupunkt's TPMS (tyre pressure monitoring system; Rs 18,990) can be fitted to any car in just a few minutes. It comes with 4 sensors for the tyre valves and a small display that plugs into the 12V socket. The sensors are battery powered (the factory-installed lithium battery will last a year before needing a replacement).

Each sensor sends a wireless signal to the display unit which in turn displays the air pressure in PSI or BAR. As a bonus, the display can be flipped up to reveal a USB port that you can use to charge your phone. For HD signals, you normally need to connect a DVD player, game console or media player using an HDMI cable.

However, now you can easily stream HD content wirelessly to your TV. You can get a HDMI WiFi Streamer like the Google Chromecast, Portronics Pandora or Airtame that lets you stream content from your phone or computer over home WiFi to the connected TV Projector for as low as `2,299. It works great with HD video and also offers mirroring option for gaming or presentations.

Alternatively you can go for wireless HDMI solution -you get a HDMI receiver for the TV and a transmitter to connect to your laptop for streaming content.This solution works better and has a larger reach, but is also much more expensive. It's easier (and cheaper) than ever to set up a home security surveillance system if you have a WiFi network. All you need is a WiFi enabled security camera ­ you can get a VGA camera with 10 IR LED night vision, two way audio communication and motorised pantilt for as less as Rs 3,000 (including shipping).
You can setup more than one camera in your home ­ each camera comes with a WiFi antenna and 110220V adapter. They can be placed on a table or mounted on wallceiling. The best part is that there is no complicated setup, port forwarding or static IP requirement from the WiFi router -all you have to do is connect it to the WiFi network and you will be able to access the live feed remotely, control the movement of the camera (90 degrees vertically, 355 degrees horizontally) and communicate with the people at the location -whether from another desktop, tablet or smartphone.

Flic is a smart wireless button that is currently up for pre-order on Indiegogo. The compact button comes in various colours and can be placed or stuck anywhere. You can configure a Flic button to do multiple things including sharing your location, call a number, find your phone, navigate to a preset location, send a distress signal, snooze an alarm, start a timer or act as a remote shutter.

All you need to do is pair the button with the free smartphone app, configure a function and then stick the Flic button anywhere for quick access. There can be multiple use cases for a wireless button that can later be added via the app. Each Flic has a battery life of up to 5 years.
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