August 18, 2014
Hospitals use devices powered by Android technology to quite literally save lives. Innovations in healthcare and healthcare informatics have revolutionized the way hospitals track patients, prescribe treatments and communicate between facilities. The scientists and technologists behind such developments tend to make the cover of Time Magazine and win Nobel Prizes.
But while not all inventions and advances in Android technology save lives, that doesn’t mean they’re not groundbreaking in their own way. Industries of all shapes and sizes benefit from the open sourced platform as it’s ripe for creativity. Take, for example, the cleaning industry. Mr. Clean never won USA Today’s Man of the Year, but improving the cleaning process does change lives; makes them easier, safer. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average person spends 2.5 hours per day cleaning and doing household chores such as laundry, dishes, de-cluttering, etc. If only someone, or something, could do it all for you… Take a moment to think about what you could do with an extra 2.5 hours in every day. Here are some Android-powered inventions that might make this happen.
Not all robots clean floors and only floors (sorry, Roomba). Using the theory of biomimicry, Mab mimics the process of bumblebees collecting pollen. The Mab dispenses flying robots with small amounts of water and cleaning fluid to circulate around your room or house. Although this amazing invention is not yet in full production, the idea and model are winning global awards. Identifying the dirtiest spots around the house, the Mab unleashes over 900 flying balls to clean and remove dirt in a beautiful symphony of robot delegation. It’s not difficult to imagine powering the Mab from an Android device like other smart home technology, or picturing industrial sized Mabs for enterprise-sized needs. And with the overwhelming response to the prototype, these are likely not too far off.
In the Checklist Manifesto, author Atul Gawande makes a strong case for checklists in everything from getting simple tasks done, to flying airplanes, to open heart surgery. The point being that the very idea of the checklist is undervalued and underutilized. Tody is an application that creates detailed checklists and even lets you delegate tasks to the unmotivated half of the household. Currently, Tody is only available for iOS, but as it typically goes with popular apps, an Android version should be on its way.
Although the race is still on for the Cadillac of home cleaners, the Samsung SR8855 is a strong contender. Abraham Lincoln once said that if he had six hours to cut down a tree, he would spend the first four sharpening his axe. This floor cleaning robot uses a similar philosophy of efficiency when cleaning the home. A camera takes images of the cleaning surface prior to launch in order to calculate the most efficient route. Once that’s done, the robot gets moving! With seven cleaning features including everything from deep scrub to auto-mode (returns back to base when done), the SR8855 is a great addition to any aspiring life hacker. Again, with Samsung being heavily involved in the internet of things movement, connecting these bots to Android applications and smart devices is happening.
What it might lack in name-creativity, the Windoro makes up for in design innovation. Using simple magnets, the Windoro first measures the area of the window. It then starts the cleaning process, and cleans the entire window. Right now, this robot is only for shops and homes (small scale cleaning), but the company has plans to grow their product to be able to handle high rises too. The retail price is right around $600, but you can’t put a price on all the time it’ll save you!
The Mirra Pool Cleaner might soon be replacing the “pool boy.” With a self-contained vacuum line, theMirra works without hoses and your pool pump. Designed specifically for in-ground pools, the Mirra navigates everything, even the nasty narrows to the open sea (the deep end). Its spinning scrub brush lifts bacteria off the pool floor and walls, leaving it clean and ready for swimming. There’s no annoying installation process and once it’s in the water there is no steering or supervision required. At about $1,300, you just need to ask yourself – how much is my time worth?
More and more, we’re seeing smart technology foster the growth of home automation. With cleaning robots and great organizational apps on the rise, it’s only a matter of time until we can check chores off of our list… for good!