Photo by CC user on Flickr.

Let’s face it, 2016 hasn’t been good to all. And even if it was good to you, I’m sure you’ll agree there’s still room for improvement. So let’s all resolve to make 2017 better. For some, achieving this goal means buying a better car, building their dream home, or getting a promotion. But you don’t have to start big. For example, you can upgrade your lifestyle simply by embracing technology.

Technology makes life easier; whether it’s the stone tools our ancestors used for hunting or the apps we use today to order food. So let’s embrace it, here are 5 technologies that can help you upgrade your lifestyle.

Technology for Health

Good health makes life a lot more enjoyable. And good news, there’s a wide range of devices that can help maintain or improve your health.

One of the first devices that comes to mind is FitBit, a company that manufactures fitness trackers in the form of clip-ons, wrist bands, and watches. Their basic products track the number of steps taken, distance covered, and calories burned, while their more advanced trackers also track your heart rate, active minutes, hourly activities, as well as the times you are stationary. They also have products that monitor and record your workout activities and sleep. The data is stored in your account, which you can view using a smartphone or computer. If you want to become healthier by maintaining an active lifestyle, FitBit’s products might be very useful.

When working out, however, it is important to keep yourself hydrated. But with a busy schedule, the importance of drinking water is usually overlooked. Fortunately, technology can assist in hydration. For example, Pryme Vessyl, a $99 smart water cup that tracks hydration and reminds you when it’s time to take a sip. It doesn’t mandate that you to drink eight glasses of water a day, rather it factors in your body weight, height, gender, and age to make the best possible recommendation. But the sweet part here is that it also collaborates with fitness trackers, including FitBit, and it takes into account your activity level. Whenever you take a sip from Pryme Vessyl, it records how much water you take in and sends the information to your smartphone. From there, you can see your hydration level and how “Prymed” are you. And if you need a few more sips, it’ll tell you.

Technology for Security

Aside from health, security should be one of your top priorities. Having a security system provides peace of mind. And as we all know, people who have peace of mind sleep and perform better. But security provides more than a psychological benefit. Home security products contribute in protecting your family and your investments from the dangers of the outside world.

When it comes to technologies that enhance home security, many products come to mind. There are security cameras, such as Nest Cam, smart home systems like SmartThings, but ultimately there is nothing better than a professionally monitored system.

I know a lot of people have had bad experiences, but there are home security companies that stand out because of their excellent customer service records. Frontpoint, for example, holds an A+ rating from the BBB and multiple Angie’s List Super Service Awards. Also, their pricing is significantly less than competitors like ADT, partially because the system is designed to be self-installed using an adhesive rather than professionally installed using a drill.

Technology for Work

Are you jealous that your boss has her own personal assistant? Now you can have one for as low as $50, a virtual assistant that is. Her name’s Alexa and she’s from Amazon. Amazon Echo Dot is Bluetooth speaker you can talk to and control using your voice. Alexa can do things like give you a summary of your schedule, order services like Uber and food delivery, search the web for you, and even control Internet of Things devices.

Technology for Entertainment

As the song goes, “Work hard, play hard.” It’s never wrong to spare some time for entertainment, especially after a long week. Whether you’re into sports or simply slouching on your couch, technology can make your off-time more fun. There’s OnCourse Goggles to help swimmers swim straight in open waters, Motionize SUPerior Tracker for standup paddlers, RadiFit to prevent knee injuries, Courtmatics Smart Dampener for tennis players, and tons of other smart wearables for sports-loving people.

But if you’d rather stay home, there are also gadgets for you. One of the most common nowadays is Virtual Reality Headsets. VR Headsets allow you to play games and make it appear as though you are physically in the game. One popular option is Oculus Rift, a VR headset for PCs and laptops. An entire set including the VR headset and controllers costs around $800. If you want cheaper options, there are also VR headsets that work with smartphones, and they cost around $20 to $100.

Final Tip

To top it off, here’s a friendly reminder: Quality over quantity. Originally, technology was built to make life less complicated, but that won’t happen if you surround yourself with technology you don’t need. It’s way better to have a few things that work perfectly for your lifestyle than to have a clutter of stuff that’s merely cosmetic.