Smart Gadgets For Babies: Love Em Or Loathe Em?

1 April 2015

Wearable Technology for Kids

My mum pointed out something weird the other day when I was obsessing over the fact that my baby monitor was running out of batteries.

"We never had those in my day," she said, eyeing me with an accusatory look.

But she's right, I think. Our parents' generation simply didn't fuss over their babies half as much as my generation seems to - yes, digital video baby monitors with movement sensors, I'm talking about you.

Which got me wondering...

For all the clever technology that we we have at the tips of our fingertips these days, are we actually just more anxious than we would otherwise be? Instead of giving parents peace of mind, have all the gadgets and gizmos that literally help us monitor a baby's every breath only served to make us more uptight?

Take Mimo as an example. I'd never heard of it until now, but the Wareable gang tell me it's a 'smart' sleepsuit with a turtle-shaped sensor incorporated into the fabric, which monitors your baby's sleep activity, movement and breathing, and streams all that data back to your Android or iOS device - wherever you are in the world.

Which is all very clever if you're a million miles from home and want to keep tabs on your baby's breaths per minute, but whatever happened to just peeking into your baby's room to keep an eye on them at night?

Apparently it can even be used to help identify patterns or problems in your baby's sleeping habits, potentially saving you the trouble of experimenting with sleep training or crying-it-out techniques in a bid to get more kip.

But is monitoring a baby's every move like this a good thing? Does it ease or exacerbate the parental anxieties that lead us to buy such things for our babies?

And how long will it be until we're outsourcing every element of parenting to technology? Can someone send me a robot to tackle nasty nappy changes? Or how about a digital disciplinarian to deal with toddler tantrums while I lie on the sofa and ease my pain with actual gin?

Have we gone gadget mad? Or do you swear by wearable technology for babies and children, and feel it's eased your anxieties as a parent? We'd love to hear your thoughts.

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.

Your comment