5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Buying an IoT Device – Newsweek

It can be easy to purchase the latest gadget hitting the shelves without much consideration. Some who bought Apple AirTags probably didn’t envision their practicality far beyond the understanding that this device would somehow help keep track of their items. But consumers are slowly recognizing potential safety concerns in these new devices: News recently surfaced of Apple having to defend the safeguards for these products after numerous instances of them being utilized in the course of stalking.

In addition to privacy issues, there are many other potential complications in the use of IoT devices, especially in setting them up. But on the other hand, these new products do offer great solutions for many of our daily problems and could significantly improve our lives.

How can we enjoy the benefits of this new technology while protecting our privacy? By asking the right questions.

1. Will the device work where you need it to?

The internet is not the same everywhere. I travel extensively, and on one particular trip, I realized that culture and infrastructure strongly determine the use of technology. In this particular case, I struggled to even get a decent internet connection. How strange, too, that when visiting some other parts of the world, I’m easily able to keep in touch with friends and family with incredible cell service — yet in my home in Santa Monica, I sometimes struggle to get a signal.

The circles of use of an IoT device need to overlap with where it works. If you want a fitness tracker to wear when hiking or biking in the woods, will you even be able to find a signal? If you fall in your house, will your Apple Watch have the ability to reach 911? Before you buy an IoT device, you need to consider what you would like to do with the device and make sure you’ll be able to use it when and where you need to.

2. What are your preferences and levels of patience?

Do you have the time, patience and skill to set up your IoT device suited to your needs? Besides a simple internet connection, countless preferences need to be selected and adjusted to ensure everything runs smoothly. If you want your personal preferences to be loaded onto new devices, unfortunately, there isn’t (yet!)an app for that. Each IoT device will need to be set up individually to match all of your unique settings.

My wife is someone who has all the skills needed to fine-tune the settings on a new device, but she does not want to deal with the inconvenience. For her, a viable solution has been to delegate that work to the available support teams. Tech support teams like Best Buy’s Geek Squad might become your best friend if you spend the money. Is that something you are willing to invest in?

3. Will the frustrations outweigh the benefits?

Frustrations are a natural byproduct of technology and IoT devices in particular. Annoyances will surely arise between setting up connections, adjusting preferences and configuring multiple devices. Take some time to weigh the amount of frustration you are willing to handle with the convenience and quality of life that IoT can bring.

The type of devices you choose also factors into this consideration. A simple Bluetooth speaker will be far simpler to manage than setting up a new Amazon Fire TV. Having the patience to wait for updated, even more streamlined devices to be released may help mitigate some of …….

Source: https://www.newsweek.com/5-questions-ask-yourself-before-buying-iot-device-1710911


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