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Gift Time =Time to Upgrade Tech: TV’s

Spending all year writing about technology leaves me little time to focus on my own household tech. My preference is to have home technology that is not only low maintenance but also high quality. Looking around the house, I realized that the fully functional 12 year-old family TV no longer remotely qualified as “top of the line”. Not to mention the glares my tween son’s friends gave me when they came over and realized we have a (shriek and face plant) TV with “tubes” in it.




So this holiday season I joined the world of high definition and purchased a new HDTV. Because our 12 year old TV Sony TV lasted so long and offered us a great viewing experience – I wanted to purchase another Sony television. At the local Sony Style store I reviewed the different models and received great information from the sales team. I also talked to friends of the family who are Home Electronic Concierges (Intuitive Environments). They sent me an article from PC Mag on how to buy an HDTV. If I were not a technology writer, I would have hired them because to help save money and time. But being a tech geek – I wanted to have the full experience of uprgading the TV on my own. I also checked CNET for reviews and to get an idea of what price I should looking for.


The hard work paid off a week later when the TV I wanted went on sale so I bought it: 40″ Sony Bravia EX720 Edge LED backlit LCD HDTV (that includes 3D and is Wi-Fi ready). Other then a high quality HDTV, I was also looking for 3D capabilities (for future use), energy saving features, LED backlit for brightness and Wi-Fi ready to stream from the Internet (which the TV had).

I was extra excited to learn that instead of all the cables the old TV required…


I just needed one HDI cable from the TV to connect to my cable service box. Connecting to the Internet can be via Wi-Fi (because the TV is Wi-Fi ready) or direct cable.



Best of all – after we connected our new HDTV, one of the first shows we watched was a Discover Channel show with breath taking images of ancient ruins in Egypt and Europe. My twin 8 year olds are history buffs. After watching the show I realized upgrading to HDTV (and watching a show on a high definition channel) gives the viewer a feeling of actually “being there”.


Painful ( but worthwhile): months of reviewing different TV options to find what I wanted and waiting for the right price.


Priceless: Finding the right TV for the right price, realizing it was easy to install and then having a Sunday night trip to Ancient Egypt and Europe from my sofa sitting next to my kids.


Extra Benefit: Even thought it was not my top concern, it is really nice to have a TV that is cool with the tweens. Best yet – a new TV was the perfect holiday (birthday or any day) gift.


Next up: Hooking our new TV up to a Sony Playstation I am reviewing and looking into sound systems. I am also searching around to buy my 8 year old twins a new desktop. Luckily our household has the latest tablets, smartphones and family laptops. But there is nothing that can take the place of a great TV.


New Tech Product: Striiv Portable Fitness Device – Rewards Thru Everday Exercise

Yesterday I had the opportunity to talk with the team and see a demo over at Striiv, a new Silicon Valley Start-Up that developed a portable fitness device for the “rest of us” (Please check out my post at Cool Mom Tech for more details).

What does “rest of us” mean?

There are already great devices for runners but how about the “rest of us” that count running in and out of the grocery store or up and down the steps to their office as their only exercise? Striiv is a device small enough to hang on your keychain but is filled with big features that everyone can use to fit in more exercise into their daily routine.

The device follows your movement (including steps,  cadence and more) assigning points to track personal goals, unlock rewards, progess steps in a gaming environment and best yet contribute to charity in what is considered a “walk-a-thon” in your pocket. Future features inlcude big plans for social.

The age range is from kids to adults, so the whole family can use the device. I will be testing a Striiv device very soon and can’t wait to share more details. For now, here is the press release for today’s announcement.

Press Release:

 Silicon Valley Start-Up Unveils Product that Motivates and Rewards Exercise through Games, Challenges and Donations

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