DES MOINES, Iowa, Jan. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Better Homes & Gardens, the leading lifestyle brand reaching 40 million readers a month, has revealed its third annual Editors' Choice Awards. Chosen by Better Homes & Gardens editors, and technology and digital media expert Shelly Palmer, the Editors' Choice Awards highlight the best of new and existing home and personal technology.
"Smart technology is now a part of every aspect our homes – from our kitchens and bathrooms to outdoor living spaces and laundry rooms – almost every new appliance is or will be connected," says Better Homes & Gardens Editor-in-Chief Stephen Orr. "We put an emphasis on products that we believe will help the modern homeowner keep up with the latest developments."
The 2017 winners combine style and smarts and are proven to make the homes and lives of consumers easier and more efficient.
"It has once again been a great experience working with the Better Homes & Gardens team on this project," says Palmer. "Together we were able to pick products with benefits that will really help consumers on a daily basis."
Among this year's picks are:
- Google Chromecast Ultra ($79; google.com) – Stream up to 4K Ultra HD & HDR picture quality with Chromecast Ultra, a streaming device that plugs into your TV's HDMI port. Mirror your phone, tablet, or laptop to your TV, or stream live sporting events, movies, or music. Don't have a 4K TV yet? The Chromecast Ultra will automatically optimize its content for your TV's best resolution.
- Whirlpool Smart French Door Pantry Refrigerator with Infinity Shelves ($3,799; whirlpool.com) – Say good-bye to a dysfunctional fridge and hello to pantry-style organization with Whirlpool's Smart French Door refrigerator. Its Infinity Shelves retract in the center to make room for tall items (wine bottles) while leaving half-shelves around the perimeter (no more lost yogurts) clearly visible. You'll also get grab-a-snack sections, a produce drawer that fits a lettuce tub, and freezer dividers that hold frozen foods upright. An app alerts you to power outages and servicing needs.
- Savant Remote + Host ($499; savant.com) – Savant Remote + Host is a media-centric home-control system. It controls over 380,000 entertainment devices (streaming, speakers, gaming consoles, DVD players, cable, satellite, and more), plus a super simple set of lamp controllers so you can set the mood for watching TV or listening to music.
- Amazon Echo Dot ($49; amazon.com) – The Amazon Echo Dot does everything the Amazon Echo does plus a bit more. The main difference is the smaller speaker. But – and this is important – the Echo Dot has a 3.5-mm audio output jack so you can attach an external speaker. This gives the Dot the ability to send its output to any audio system you have. It also can transmit sound wirelessly over Bluetooth.
- Sony Playstation VR ($399; playstation.com) – The PlayStation VR takes gaming to the next level by putting you in the middle of all the action. It turns amazing games into virtual reality creating incredibly immersive experiences.
- Lutron Caseta Wireless ($99; Lutron.com) – Caseta from Lutron is a lighting-centric control system that will work perfectly with your existing lights. There are both physical and app-based controls, which means you can operate your lights even if you left your smartphone in another room. That also means guests won't be left in the dark.
- Samsung Trio ($99 Gear VR; $349.99 Gear 360; Samsung.com) – Samsung's Gear 360 camera, virtual reality headset and Galaxy smartphone work together in an innovative 3-D system. The phone and VR headset bring to life what you capture on the camera.
- Canary ($200; canary.com) – When it detects motion, the Canary records HD video and sends an alert to your phone. It's a great way to know (and see) when your child comes home. But if there's an intruder, you can sound a siren and call local police. With a 147-degree camera span and night vision, you can always take a peek at what's going on at home, day or night. It also monitors temperature and humidity.
- Garmin Forerunner 235 ($269.99; garmin.com) – Serious runners need more than just a fitness tracker. With 24/7 wrist-based heart-rate monitoring, GPS, built-in activity tracking, and connected features, Garmin's Forerunner 235 is a device built with athletes in mind. Track your distance, pace, time, heart rate, and more, and view all the data in real time. Download workouts and training plans that work best for you, track your progress with the Garmin Connect network, then compare and share with friends and family. It's everything you need in a convenient watch-size package.
- Sony 55-inch X930D / X940D 4K HDR with Android TV ($1,499.99; sony.com) – The biggest trend in TVs is 4K HDR (high-dynamic range). These new ultra-high-definition sets – such as this 55-inch Android TV by Sony – give you whiter whites and blacker blacks, they also offer 10-bit color, which displays almost infinite color space.
- Ford Fusion ($22,120 Starting MSRP, $139 / Mo Lease; ford.com) – You don't have to buy an expensive sports sedan to get state-of-the-art semiautonomous features. The Ford Fusion will practically drive itself in stop-and-go traffic, and it has adaptive cruise control, pre-collision assist, and pedestrian detection.
Additional winners from the 2017 Editors' Choice Awards include: IT Bed by Sleep Number; Dropbox; LG Signature TWINWash/Washer-Dryer Hybrid; All-Clad 5-Quart Slow Cooker with In-Pot Browning; Apple Music; Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 EX7000; Blue Apron; Uber; Virtru
Full descriptions of the winning products can be found online at BHG.com.
ABOUT BETTER HOMES & GARDENS
Better Homes & Gardens serves, connects and inspires readers who infuse color and creativity into each aspect of their lives. Reaching 40 million readers a month via the most trusted print magazine, the brand also extends across a robust website, multiple social platforms, tablet editions, mobile apps, broadcast programs and licensed products. Better Homes & Gardens fuels our readers' passions to live a more colorful life through stunning visuals, a balance of substance and surface, and a blend of expert and reader ideas. Better Homes & Gardens is published 12 times a year by Meredith Corporation, with a rate base of 7.6 million.
ABOUT MEREDITH CORPORATION
Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP; www.meredith.com) has been committed to service journalism for 115 years. Today, Meredith uses multiple distribution platforms – including broadcast television, print, digital, mobile and video – to provide consumers with content they desire and to deliver the messages of its advertising and marketing partners.
Meredith's National Media Group reaches more than 100 million unduplicated women every month, including nearly 75 percent of U.S. Millennial women. Meredith is the leader in creating and distributing content across platforms in key consumer interest areas such as food, home, parenthood and health through well-known brands such as Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, Parents, Shape and EatingWell. Meredith also features robust brand licensing activities, including more than 3,000 SKUs of branded products at 4,000 Walmart stores across the U.S. and at walmart.com. Meredith Xcelerated Marketing is an award-winning, strategic and creative agency that provides fully integrated marketing solutions for many of the world's top brands, including Kraft, TGIFriday's and NBC Universal.
Meredith's Local Media Group includes 17 owned or operated television stations reaching 11 percent of U.S. households. Meredith's portfolio is concentrated in large, fast-growing markets, with seven stations in the nation's Top 25 – including Atlanta, Phoenix, St. Louis and Portland – and 13 in Top 50 markets. Meredith's stations produce nearly 700 hours of local news and entertainment content each week, and operate leading local digital destinations.
ABOUT SHELLY PALMER
Shelly Palmer is Managing Partner at Palmer Advanced Media, a technology-focused strategic advisory practice that helps Fortune 500 companies and growth-stage companies with digital strategy, data science, marketing, branding, and business development. He is FOX 5 New York's on-air tech and digital media expert and a regular commentator on CNBC and CNN. Follow him at @shellypalmer or visit www.shellypalmer.com.
SOURCE Meredith Corporation; Better Homes and Gardens