The academic and social pressures of college can be hard enough, so equip your university-attending offspring with intelligent tech that will make their lives just that much easier.
Below are some devices that any dorm room would appreciate.
Philips Hue Light Strips
Decorating a dorm room—the very definition of a temporary living space—can be a difficult task and lighting is one of the few areas where occupants can get creative without causing permanent damage. And with Philips Hue Light Strips, their creativity can know no bounds. Not only do the strips offer users a plethora of configuration options—ambient to reading to all-around illumination— they also provide a near unlimited palette. Hue owners have 16 million colors to design and develop sequences with—enough of an array for any possible lighting situation. Better still, Hue, via the Hue App, has endless means of control. Hue Strip users can change the color scheme on a whim, sync it to their movies, music or games, schedule sunrise simulating lighting for mornings and control their strips from anywhere in the world.
The Philips Hue Light Strips starter pack is available for $89 with strip extensions available for $29.
Behmor Connected Coffee Maker
Coffee is the lifeblood of college students, who, by either procrastinating or perfectionist tendencies (or a packed social life), will find themselves pulling many an all-nighter. Help your offspring power through the day with the Behmor Connected Coffee Maker. This brainy bean juice provider is deeply integrated with Amazon services, including Alexa, which allowing users to simply speak their desired order and Dash, the automated delivery service which can ensure users never run out the necessary ingredients to brew a pot. Of course if you prefer to type instead of talk your order, you can do that too, via the Behmor app, which allows users to schedule brewings, so you can swing by home for a cup of joe between classes. And it will always be your preferred cup as well. Behmor users can log brewing profiles and replicate their ideal drink anytime the need for speed strikes. Best of all, Behmor’s design keeps coffee at optimal temperatures for hours, so if you need to run to hand in that midterm, a warm drink will await you when you return.
The Behmor is available on Amazon for $243.
College is a time of discovery and one of the more shocking discoveries your child will make is that the carpet at home was clean for all those years because someone was vacuuming it. You can help ease this shattering surprise—and add some modicum of cleanliness to a messy situation—by investing in a Roomba. This intelligent, automated vacuuming robot can be set to clean on-demand or—more likely in your kid’s case—scheduled to perform regular sweeps for a consistent level of clean. Given its constant connectivity and app-based controls, enterprising parents, who are perhaps not entirely ready to let go, could even set the Roomba about its functions from halfway around the world.
Roombas are available from $299 to $899, depending on desired features and area of cleaning coverage needed.
Despite the always-connected nature of our current reality, keeping in touch can still be tough—especially if one of the parties was recently introduced to the exciting adventure of living away from home. Fortunately there is Nucleus, a video intercom system that offers instant, rich, hi-def video and audio connections that work coast-to-coast as well as it does room-to-room.
Think of it as a window directly into your child’s dorm, with the added benefit of streaming audio—of course, there are essential “Privacy” and “Do Not Disturb” modes that show potentially connecting parties a holding screen, instead of streaming video. But the best part is that all parties don’t need to have a Nucleus. Callers can connect to a Nucleus device via the accompanying Nucleus app, which means in addition to being a way to connect to your child, the Nucleus can serve as a digital dorm doorbell for all your kid’s college friends.
Nucleus is currently available on Amazon for $124.