Mobile phones were a revolution in communication when they first came on the scene, but today they are hardly used for their intended call and text functions. The modern smartphone can access the internet at the touch of a button, connecting to Wi-fi networks and 3G/4G satellite systems when users are at home or on the move. Through these internet connections, smartphones can power other objects or send signals to them in order to achieve a response.
This connected technology has opened the door for free video calling and instant messenger systems, effectively ending the need for the phone’s primary functions. Instead, smartphones today are used as pocket computers which can interact with the surrounding environment and with the wider world. As well as powering communications between people modern phones can interact with other objects, using connective technology to make real-time actions happen.
Wi-Fi and the Internet of Things
Wi-fi internet is wireless technology which facilitates internet access. Phones, laptops, consoles and other computer devices can all access the internet remotely through Wi-fi networks. There is now a growing demand for other objects which are Wi-fi enabled – such as speakers, navigation systems, heaters and boilers, security systems and cooking devices. The technology connecting all these devices to each other is known as the Internet of Things, and smartphones will play a very important role in the growth of IoT devices and objects.
Today, there are hundreds of different kinds of smartphone accessories which are powered by Wi-fi. These devices and gadgets use internet and Bluetooth connectivity to power the world around you and create added functionality for your handheld devices. From fitness trackers to security devices, these are our top picks for smartphone Wi-fi accessories in 2017.
Best Wi-fi accessories for smartphones
Health monitoring and condition management gadgets
The Apple iHealth range of devices is compatible with most recent models of the iPhone. The series also works with Apple computers and with the iPad tablet. A mobile application collects and ties together all the data, giving the user an accurate picture of their current health and wellbeing. While primarily intended for the fitness market, this health tracking technology has proved very popular among markets with long-term health conditions, such as diabetes or a nutritional disorder.
From body analysis scales to glucometers and blood pressure monitors, these health devices can track changes in condition and provide many routine checks that usually require a trip to the doctors. They use wireless technology and send the signal directly to the user’s mobile phone for instant analysis and tracking. While iHealth is purely for iOS devices, there are similar machines and gadgets available for Android users as well.
Fitness trackers and goal monitors
Any savvy smartphone user will already have heard of the Fitbit – a small USB drive complete with many different sensors, which track everything from steps taken to current heart rate. There are many different kinds of fitness tracker, including wearable smart watches like the Apple Watch, and clip-on gadgets like pedometers and pulse counters. These devices use Wi-fi signals to connect with your mobile phone, giving you real-time feedback about your performance and fitness levels. Fitness apps may be used in conjunction with wireless fitness technology. These apps can send workout instructions or motivational music to your wireless earphones, divert calls while you run and give you maps for planning and recording routes. Fitness gadgets are hotly tipped to be among the year’s most-wanted technology, with rave reviews on the latest models coming from the tech community. Fitness apps and devices were one of the most talked about technology types at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show.
Camera lenses and filters
Wi-fi access means that we can all take photos and upload them to social media or save them to our Cloud storage, no matter where we are. Mobile phone cameras have improved dramatically in recent years and are now as good or better than the average digital SLR. In order to maximise on the potential of your mobile’s camera, you might want to add a camera lens or a filter plate. The Sony QX30 is a good starting point, but there are hundreds of different accessories.
Many include internet capabilities, internal storage, and even access to media apps in order to make photo sharing more fast and simple. Never miss a moment again – capture all the action during sports games, on a night out or during a special occasion. Camera accessories for mobiles and accessories are fast becoming the must-have gadget of this year, especially as prices drop to a more accessible level for the consumer market.
Drones and quadcopters
Drones are certainly the gadget everyone has been talking about over the Christmas period, and their popularity does not seem to be fading any time soon. In fact, 2017 is likely to see the next generation of smart drones being produced. Many of the current series of drones can be used with an iOS or Android mobile device. Applications on the phone power the drone and track its movement, just like a handheld remote control. Drones can also send live video and still images back to the phone during flight, giving you a unique look at the world from above. They use Wi-fi signals to collect data while in the air, as well as recording the world around them. As drones become more advanced, it is likely that their popularity will grow even more and we will see lots more of these flying cameras in the skies.
You can find great deals on these top smartphone accessories online and look up your favourite electronics retailers such as Argos, Currys, PC World and Amazon. You will also see deals on a wide range of other accessories for smartphones, such as hands-free headsets, VR headsets and video game controllers, beauty and wellness products, and entertainment apps. Smartphones can be turned into almost any other device, from a computer console to a movie projector, with the help of Wi-fi accessories.