While the coronavirus pandemic is not over yet, it is still important to look ahead at the new normal and how we will adapt to it. Things are going to change, and the way we live and work will continue to be different than it ever has before. But, thanks to technology we have all the tools to cope with this, we have the tools to be able to work from home, tools to keep in contact with loved ones and tools to keep us entertained during times of lockdown. So what technology do you need to survive and adapt to the new normal?
While health encompasses many things, in this case, it's about COVID-19 and keeping you safe from catching and spreading Coronavirus. As technology is something that develops and changes at a rapid pace, there have been some excellent innovations already to help in the fight against Coronavirus, and this will continue to be the case. Here is the technology you need to stay healthy:
Test and Trace App
There are different apps in different countries which are doing the same thing, so wherever you are, make sure you download the right one. A Test and trace app will help trace recent close contacts of anyone who tests positive for Coronavirus so it will notify you if you are at risk and let you know if you need to self-isolate at home to help stop the spread of the virus. Apps like this also help to control the rate of reproduction (R), reduce the spread of the infection, and save lives. By playing your part through downloading the app, you will directly help to contain the virus by reducing its spread.
While this was a great piece of technology when first invented and still continues to be, there have been significant improvements and right now if you're not feeling great and concerned that you might have COVID-19 symptoms, then it's a good idea to have a thermometer on hand. You can now get thermometer apps for your smartphone, including iThermonitor, which is available on both android and iOS devices and allows you to easily get your temperature on your smartphone. It is easy to use and is a free app which is even better.
It's important to stay fit and healthy anyway but particularly during this pandemic, if you're healthy and your immune system is strong, then you have a better chance of fighting the virus off. While it can be difficult to get motivated during lockdowns and many gyms have had to close, technology is here for us and can really help when it comes to exercise.
While YouTube is your friend for learning new skills and keeping you entertained with Cat videos, another thing that YouTube is brilliant for is free workout videos which you can do from the comfort of your own home. There are loads of different personal trainers on YouTube and some you will have to pay for and others you can get for free, so have a look around and find what works for you.
Couch 2 5K
Another app here, but this one can help you run. If you're not a runner, but you want to get started, then this is the app for you. Couch 2 5K does exactly what it says on the tin and will get you from off the couch to running 5k. With a helpful guide, this app will gently ease you into running, so you'll start slow and it will tell you when to run and when to walk and will gradually build your stamina up so that you can run for longer without having to rest.
Socialising is one of the most important things to do during a lockdown or just to get you through the pandemic. However, socialising must be done at a distance or online. So what do you need to socialise and stay connected to people successfully?
A Decent Smartphone
While most people have a smartphone today if you have older relatives who don't then perhaps it's time to get them one, you can buy second-hand phones now or get good deals on contract, but the important thing is for them to include a camera for video calling, the ability to download apps to keep you entertained and good internet connection or signal. You may need a boost for your smartphone to keep up with today's quickly emerging 5G world so something like WilsonPro 5g products can enhance cell signals for all phones and cellular-connected devices.
Portal from Facebook
Facebook Portal does more than just let you video chat with your Facebook friends as it now allows you to make Whatsapp calls too even if the person you're calling doesn't have Portal. As well as this, Portal is integrated with Alexa. The unit sits on a desk or table or near your TV, and the camera follows as you walk around, so you can talk to someone completely hands-free while doing other things. This is a great piece of technology for anyone embracing the world of video chat and is really good for families trying to stay in touch as it's far less formal than video conferencing and the camera allows for so much more than just sitting in front of the screen and chatting. If the kids want to perform a show for Grandma, then it's no problem.
Social media is a great way to feel connected to people. It could be friends you already have or communities on Social media that you could join. If you have an interest or perhaps a particular worry, you can search for likeminded people who are feeling the same or into the same things as you. It will open a whole new world of connections and friends for you.
Working from home or remotely is now more commonplace than ever before, and it looks set to stay that way for the foreseeable future. Again technology has been the thing that has made this possible for companies all over the world, and without the following, the pandemic could have been a lot worse for a lot of people.
Thankfully it's not difficult to get all the software you usually use when you're at work to be installed on your laptop or home computer so that you can carry on doing your job as smoothly as possible. As well as this, it's important to install good communication software for you and your team. As you can't just turn around from your desk to discuss something work-related, it needs to be just as easy to ask a question and get in contact with people. A platform like Slack is great for keeping the conversation and going and getting everyone connected.
While video chatting has already been mentioned, there are some more professional options for this, such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams. It's important for people to have meetings and to see each other face to face and if this is the way to do it now then so be it.
We all need entertainment during the lockdown and today there is so much of it available, but you might just need some technology to help you access it.
There are too many to mention now from Netflix to Hulu to Disney+ and Amazon Prime it's hard to know which one to choose. Luckily a lot of them offer free trials, so it's worth signing up to this for all of them and then working out which one you want to pay for. Movies and binge-watching box sets will keep you going throughout periods of lockdown or isolation.
There are tonnes of games available on the internet or if you have a games console then even better. Playing video games can provide great escapism during these uncertain and worrying times, and they can keep you entertained for hours.
Your mental health and wellness are extremely important during this time, and many people are really suffering. While there are loads of things you can do for your wellness which aren't related to technology, do take advantage of those that are. Meditation and mindfulness are really good for helping people who are struggling with lockdown, isolation, anxiety or stress.
Calm is an app which offers guided meditation and can help with sleep. It features exclusive music to help you focus, relax and sleep and even includes bedtime stories to help you drift off. Another great feature is video lessons on mindful movement and gentle stretching.
Or there is Headspace which is a guided meditation app and teaches you how to meditate at any time and in any place. You can browse the Headspace Library and pick from courses and single meditation sessions to suit whatever mood you're in. You can then choose your session length depending on how much time you have, then replay your favourites and learn how to apply mindfulness to your everyday life.