Spring heralds new beginnings and if you’re welcoming a newborn into your home, these gadgets might help…
Motorola MBP482 Baby Video Monitor, £59.99, Argos
As well as producing mobile products, in recent years tech giants Motorola have carved a niche as baby monitor specialists too. While there are loads of different monitors on the market – both audio and video, starting from around £20, up to £200 – this mid-range option from Motorola offers both without making too much of a dent on new-parents’ stretched purse strings. Powered by a rechargeable battery – so it can be moved without any interference to the screen – position the small camera at your baby’s cot and the 2.4″ tablet will live screen from the nursery. Helpfully enough, it also displays the in-room temperature and offers infrared night vision so you don’t have to hit the lights to check baby’s safe once darkness has fallen.
BABY, IT’S COLD OUTSIDE
Gro Egg Room Thermometer, £14.99, Argos
Whether it’s toasty outside or an arctic breeze is blowing in, the NHS recommend keeping the baby’s room at around 18C to reduce the risk of overheating. One way of monitoring this is by investing in a thermometer. Once plugged into the mains, this one by Gro Egg displays the temperature and subtly glows in one of four different soft colours according to the room’s reading. So blue is too cold, yellow is ideal, orange is warm and red is too hot, and it also comes with an unhappy face emoticon as an extra nudge for you to adjust the heating.
Ewan the Dream Sheep, £29.99, www.sweetdreamers.co.uk
This gadget is pure comfort. From the outside it’s a super soft cuddly sheep toy, but inside, it’s much smarter than that. Once three AAA batteries (not included) have been secured in the battery pack inside the teddy’s tummy, Ewan the sheep transforms into a technically savvy bedtime soother. Pull any leg and he’ll emit one of four low frequency sounds, including a real recording of womb sounds and a heartbeat, and give off a soft pink glow designed to calm your tot. Handily enough, Ewan’s tail is made from Velcro, so he can be secured to the top of a cot or pram to ensure soothing on the go.
FULL STEAM AHEAD
Philips Avent 3 in 1 Electric Steam Steriliser, £70, Mothercare
However your baby feeds, there will be a job lot of bottles and breast contraptions to clean and sterilise. If boiling, using cold water sterilising solution or microwavable sterilisers isn’t right for you, an electric steam steriliser is an option. Made by Philips, this all-in-one system has removable compartments enabling shorter cycles for small items such as dummies, as well as a larger container for a full load of six bottles and breast pump equipment. It takes six minutes to sterilise a load, but check the instructions if it’s falling wide or short of this – you might need to alter the amount of water you add.
IT’S CHICCO TIME
Chicco Natural Feeling Complete Starter Set, £60 (RRP £150), Mothercare
Small as they are, babies come with an impressive capacity to guzzle milk, so it’s no surprise there’s a whole corner of the tech market devoted to gizmos to aid this. And as sterilisation goes, this Chicco feeding kit is a solid start. At £60 – electric sterilisers vary from £20-£80 – it comes with an electric steriliser, manual breast pump, five bottles and a dummy. You can stack up to six 330ml feeding bottles in the steriliser (most bottle brands will fit, but check with the manufacturer if you’re unsure), as well as smaller accessories in the other compartment at a time, for a five-minute blast. If you have a small load, say two 330ml bottles and a few small objects, use compact mode.
PLUG IN BABY
Oblumi Tapp Smart Thermometer, £39.99, Amazon
Smartphone users can turn their device into a family thermometer with the help of this nifty gadget. Created by Oblumi, just download the app, secure the probe in the headphone jack and cover the nozzle with the blue cover and start taking accurate readings, either on the forehead or in the ear. The gizmo – which needs two CR1616 batteries – can also be used to check the temperature of bath water and baby’s bottle, and comes with a compact case, containing a few wipes to keep it clean.