My nightstand provides the right amount of technology to allow me to settle in for the night, go to sleep, and wake up in the morning.
Even without the Spot’s ability to control smart home products and systems, it is the perfect bedside clock. The compact form factor is attractive and unlike other ‘smart speakers’ by providing a functional solution that combines multiple products.
The customisable display can automatically dim depending on the level of ambient light. The white clock face indicators even change to red to be more comfortable to read in the dark. The display shows local weather and other information when required.
Like other similar products, including others in the Echo range, the Spot can play music (Spotify and Amazon Music), and digital radio (iHeart and Tune-In). Amazon has a large collection of ‘Skills’ that can be downloaded directly to the Spot, including a range of sleep sounds to aid going to sleep.
Although the Hue Go can be operated as a standalone lamp, it is best utilised as part of the Philips Hue smart lighting ecosystem. As with other Hue products, the Hue Go provides Hue white and colour ambiance, meaning it can change colour and colour temperature.
Unlike a typical bed lamp, the Hue Go is designed to provide a soft direct glow, or an indirect wall wash of light. It is best used to provide ambiance and atmosphere rather than as a task light for say, reading.
The Hue Go is fully compatible with all voice control systems (Apple Homekit, Google Home, Amazon Echo) allowing it to be controlled as an individual lamp, or as part of a routine or scene.
The Philips Hue range is the best smart lighting solution, providing a wide range of luminaries and accessories. The Hue system is very mature and reliable – it just works.
The Belkin BoostUp is a wireless pad charger compatible with Qi enabled devices. This model has been optimised for the Apple iPhone 8 and iPhone X, and comes with an AC adapter wall plug (most others don’t).
This model of BoostUp, provides a 7.5W output that is higher than the typical 5W output of most wireless pads, allowing faster charging. Whilst it is not as fast as a higher specification 10W+ plug in charger and cable (used for charging iPads etc.), the convenience of a wireless charging pad outweighs speed, which is irrelevant if charging overnight.
Wireless phone charging is very convenient – just sit your phone onto the charging pad. No need to plugging in a cable. Once you have wireless charging, you will be reluctant to go back to a plugging in a traditional charging cable.
Until Apple releases their own wireless charging pad, this is one of the better ones currently available. You will never be able to have enough of these charging pads around the home and office.
The iPhone X is Apple’s flagship and best phone. It is a ground-breaking phone that contains many technologies that will be implemented into future device.
The iPhone X (and iPhone 8 series) provides a truely wireless user experience, including charging, using products like the Belkin BoostUp. As with the previous iPhone 7 , the iPhone X does not have a traditional, old-fashioned 3.5mm headphone jack. We have had a couple of years to get over the headphone jack, and have not needed to look back. The wireless experience is made better with products like the Apple AirPods, that are amazing.
The Apple Watch is the best and most complete smart watch available. It fits into the Apple ecosystem perfectly.
The Series 3 range if very fast, and can operate as an independent device, rather than needing to be tethered to your phone.
The only negative for the Apple Watch is its battery, that still needs to be charged daily, typically overnight. The battery and charging needs, limits the Apple Watch’s ability to effectively monitor sleep, for which Apple does not have a native application that integrates with Apple HealthKit.
Fast becoming a ubiquitous watch, there is a wide range of offical Apple Watch bands, third-party bands, and other charging and mounting accessories.
A product missing from my nightstand is my Amazon Kindle E-reader. Kindle is the best eBook reader with the widest range of books and the easiest purchasing experience.