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Forks, fitbits and phones highlight CES for 50+
Posted By Suzie Mitchell On January 11, 2013 @ 9:37 am In Technology | Comments Disabled
I spent two days at the massive Consumer Electronic Show (CES) in Las Vegas searching for mobile apps and gadgets that could help people 50+ enhance their lives.
I saw many products including newfangled televisions, stereo speakers the size of an egg, wristwatch phones (yes, Dick Tracy fans, they have arrived!), cars that drive themselves and completely tricked out smart phone cases that all could be used by boomers and seniors. While many of the gadgets would be fun to have, I wanted to zero in on a few that could help us navigate through life in an easier and healthier way.
These are little devices you can hook onto your clothing or wear like wristbands. They have names like NikeFuel,  Fitbit  and Fitbug . They keep track of how many steps you take per day (10,000 being the optimum) how many flights of stairs you walk, how much energy (calories) you burn and how many miles you walked in a day. The data is synced with an app on your smartphone or computer and gives you your activity levels on an easy to read dashboard. They are available on line or in retail stores for about $100.
My husband and I started wearing Fitbits a few weeks ago. I received one as a gift and loved it so much I bought him one. Now we’re in a little healthy (pardon the pun) competition.
It didn’t start out like that, but we just can’t resist comparing notes. Every day, we check with each other to see who has taken the most steps or climbed the most flights of stairs. In fact, one day we shared that we each parked a little further away from a store in a parking lot, just to get some extra steps. It’s really a fun way to increase your daily activity.
As wristphones make their way into the stratosphere, it’s good to know that some entrepreneurs are looking out for older people whose eyesight is dwindling or who have parents who need assistance.
Special smartphone cases
For those of us who use our smartphones often and find we are constantly running out of power, usually when we are away from a charging plug– these charging packs are a lifesaver.
Brands like mophie  (for Apple products) and mycharge  (for Apple and all other brands) offer charging packs that look and feel just like plastic smartphone cases but keep your phone charged on the go. These entry level battery cases retail for under $100 and offer four hours of extra talk time. Both companies offer more powerful charging cases that can charge multiple devices for more hours.
A forkful of weight loss
Sign me up. The first ever-electronic fork claims to track the number of fork servings taken per minute per meal. If you eat too fast, the fork lights up and gently vibrates, signaling to slow down.
The weight loss idea being; the slower you eat, the less you eat, the more weight you lose. The HAPifork transmits your eating data from your fork to your with computer and/or smart phone so you can record it and review it on a dashboard. And—get this—you can share your “forkfuls per minute” with your friends and loved ones.
I’m not quite sure how my friends would react getting an email from me with the number of forkfuls of breakfast I consumed. I think that may fall under the TMI category.
The HAPifork  is a product of the French based HAPilabs that’s mission is to “help people in the 21st century take control of their “HAPiness, health and fitness through applications and mobile connected devices. For $99, a brightly colored mobile electronic fork that might be the answer to an overeater’s prayers. Who knows?
These are just a few of the new and exciting products I discovered at the CES show. Check back for future reviews.
Article printed from AARP: http://blog.aarp.org
URL to article: http://blog.aarp.org/2013/01/11/forks-fitbits-and-phones-highlight-ces-for-50/
URLs in this post:
 NikeFuel,: http://store.nike.com/us/en_us/?l=shop,pdp,ctr-inline/cid-1/pid-669575/pgid-670534&cp=USNS_KW_0611081618
 Fitbit: http://www.fitbit.com/
 Fitbug: http://www.fitbug.com/
 CareLine+: http://www.vtechphones.com/vtechphones/index.cfm/careline/careline-home-safety-telephone-system/
 SpareOnePlus: http://spareone.com/spareone-emergency-phone
 mophie: http://www.mophie.com/
 mycharge: http://www.mycharge.com/
 Image: http://blog.aarp.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/hapifork.jpg
 HAPifork: http://www.hapilabs.com/
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