Now in its early stages, artificial intelligence is on the cusp of going mainstream. There are some cool AI-based gadgets and apps on the market, but the next step in AI’s evolution is the development of gadgets that are useful in day-to-day life. This doesn’t necessarily mean “smart” — just practical.
While AI will no doubt continue to improve as technology progresses, there are a handful of helpful devices and gadgets you can get your hands on now. Here is a quick look at six of the best.
1. Cocoon Cam
Cocoon Cam takes the concept of a baby monitor and elevates it to the next level. It has a video monitor, which is standard on such devices these days, but it also monitors your baby’s breathing, can update you with instant alerts, and gives you an idea of how the little one is resting via sleep analytics.
The camera connects to an associated smartphone app that allows you to check on your child no matter where you are, whether you’re down the hall or on a work trip on the other side of the planet.
The real innovation here is the device’s ability to monitor your baby’s breathing without any sensors or wearable that could be uncomfortable for sensitive skin. The camera uses computer vision technology to track your child’s chest movements, even if they are wrapped in a blanket.
You know about home robots that can help keep your floors tidy, but Kuri is more like a humanoid version of smart home devices like Amazon’s Alexa. A built-in microphone allows Kuri to listen to your voice and take commands, whether it’s playing your favorite songs or podcasts or reading the kids a story before bed.
The robot connects to your entertainment hub but also maneuvers around your home and learns the floor plan over time, including which room belongs to whom. Kuri can also learn the day-to-day routine of your home and wake you up each morning or greet you when you get home from work in the evening.
In addition, Kuri’s “eyes” are a camera that takes photos or videos, recognizes faces, and serves as an alarm system when you’re not home.
Those who know anyone with Parkinson’s disease know just how exhausting its symptoms can be. Hand tremors can make even basic tasks such as eating or writing nearly impossible.
The GyroGlove aims to change all of that. It’s a fingerless glove that places a gyroscope on the top of your hand, creating a sensation comparable to moving your hand through thick syrup. It allows you to move freely but slowly, eliminating the effects of hand tremors.
The glove has been shown to reduce hand tremors by as much as 90 percent, and a companion app tracks your tremors to help you and your medical team manage them more efficiently.
GyroGlove is nearing the end of its development cycle, although there is not yet an official word on when it will be available commercially.
Children with disabilities face many challenges, and Leka aims to help motivate them to play and learn. The device is an interactive robot that allows kids with special needs to play educational games that can help with motor, cognitive, and emotional skills.
The multi-sensory toy also encourages both social interaction and autonomy. It’s a sphere-shaped device that can talk, and it features different colors of LEDs to help kids understand emotions and comprehend communication. Leka is currently in an alpha phase, and interested parents can sign up to give a prototype a try, though they must pay a fee to do so.
Ever since the days of Knight Rider, the talking car has been a dream for many. That dream is realized with Dashbot, a talking AI dashboard robot that connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth.
You know it’s not safe to pull out your phone while you’re driving, whether it’s to send a text message or even to change the current song. Dashbot is like an in-car personal assistant that can handle all of that for you, using voice commands.
Dashbot supports a wide variety of platforms, including Amazon’s Alexa, Spotify, SoundCloud, Apple Music, Google Play Music, and ESPN Radio. One of its key features is an open API, meaning developers can add support for all sorts of services.
One of the device’s coolest features is that it employs a microphone system with built-in noise cancelation, allowing it to hear you over the sounds of music or traffic.
Graava is an action camera similar to GoPro and other entries in that space, with one significant advantage — it edits your videos for you.
The camera utilizes sensors that help it recognize changes in scenery — such as acceleration or moving objects — as well as shifts in audio. The AI then takes the best moments of your footage and pares them down to create a video of your desired length.
If there is a moment you are sure you will want to include in your final video, all you have to do is say the word “Graava.” If you have more than one camera working, the AI will take clips from both and use shots from each interchangeably in the final product.
Even though we’re in the early stages of using AI in daily life, these six products are an excellent way to start. And if their innovation at this stage is any indication, the future of consumer AI tech is bright.
Kayla Matthews is a technology and energy IT writer whose work has appeared on Motherboard, MakeUseOf, and Triple Pundit.