Accessing Potential Through Assistive Technology
Gifting Guide Day 7: Power the lights on and off without making a move

With today’s technology, someone can be sitting and never have to lift a finger to turn the lights on (or off).

Imagine getting into bed and realizing the kitchen lights are still on. For many, this is frustrating to walk back to the kitchen. For others, they have to get back into their wheelchair to return to the kitchen to flip the switch.

There are a number of safety features that may be automated, such as if a camera or motion sensor senses movement after a certain time, lights come on. When not home, lights can be set to to randomly go on and off. The lights can also be set to automatically come on at sunset or at a certain preferred time.

Philips Home Bridge with four bulbs in starter kit

This Hue Starter Pack includes the Hue bridge and bulbs to get started.

  • The Hue bridge plugs directly into router and utilizes the built in Zigbee network.
  • The Hue bridge allows up to 50 bulbs to be controlled via voice or smart device. Timers, routines, and more are able to be set on each of these bulbs.
  •  With an Amazon Alexa or Google Home device, you can use simple voice commands such as, ‘Alexa, dim the lights’, or,’ ‘Hey Google, turn on the table lamp’, to control your lights. Compatible devices include: Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Generation or newer, Amazon Echo Plus, Amazon Echo Show 5 or newer, Google Home Mini and Google Home Hub.
  • Up to 10 Hue bulbs may be controlled using Bluetooth without using the bridge, but there are a number of limitations. More info on this can be found here at Hue’s website. I highly recommend using the Hue Bridge.
  • The bulbs are guaranteed to last 3 years, so there is much less replacement of bulbs!
  • The bulbs and bridge are compatible with the Hue app that may be installed on any iOS or Android device. This app allows users to customize lighting for their needs and to control from outside of the home if needed.
  • There are a vast number of types of Hue bulbs available to fit the needs of your household.
  • How to set up the system

Wyze bulbs are a budget friendly option

Sengled bulbs have more compatibility and still a budget option

  • Sengled bulbs work with Apple HomeKit, Alexa, and Google Home.
  • These bulbs have an energy consumption tracking feature built into their app
  • These are another budget friendly option, at around $12 per bulb.
  • No hub or bridge is required, and setup is very quick. They connect directly to your home network.
  • These bulbs are missing most of the advanced features, but through the Alexa or Google Home, some may be able to be utilized.
  • These bulbs are more readily available than the Wyze bulbs.
  • These bulbs require the use of the Sengled Home app.
  • How to setup the system

Pro tip: Pick one and stick with it. It’s easier to have one system than bouncing back and forth.

Comment below if you have some other smart bulbs you have found to work great in your home OR if you have any great tips on how to better use them with voice activation.


This list is provided for informational purposes only as APTAT does not endorse specific products or brands. When purchasing be sure to thoroughly research the product features to ensure it will meet your individual needs.

Gifting Guide Day 1: Smart Devices for Temperature Control

Stay the perfect temperature with these cool devices!

Temperature devices are great for someone with difficulty regulating their body temperature. But why would we want them to be smart controlled? Because they can be controlled by a smart device or voice to turn on/off or adjust temperature! Multiple control options are ideal features for someone with mobility issues, chronic pain or fatigue, vision impairment, and many other limitations.

When purchasing any temperature control device look for the following features to improve accessibility and safety:

  • Ability to control through wifi connected app. This allows a user to navigate through a smart device with their preferred access. It also allows for a caregiver to remotely control the device as needed.
  • Ability to control with your favorite smart home speaker which allows the user to control the device hands free by voice!
  • Safety features like timers, shut off, or app alerts.
Image of a folded blanket with controller and smart phone displaying the Sunbeam app

Sunbeam® LoftTec™ Wi-Fi Connected Heated Blanket.

  • Control the Heated Blanket from anywhere using the Sunbeam app, voice assistants, or wired digital controller. Great for when a caregiver needs to adjust the settings remotely!
  • Pair with the Wi-Fi-enabled Sunbeam app to power on, select heat settings, and preheat your bedding from anywhere.
  • Use with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant voice-enabled devices for easy use, even in the dark. Hands free control is great for accessibility!

Find out more and where to buy at Sunbeam.

Vornado OSCR37 AE 37″ Oscillating Tower Circulator with Alexa

  • Alexa-enabled circulator which allows hands free control
  • Oscillation on-demand prevents direct air flow to someone who may be sensitive.
  • 4 speed touch controls to suit many needs.
  • Quiet operation so those with sound sensitivity can still enjoy the device.

Find out more and where to buy at Vornado.

Atomi Smart Space Tower Heater

  • ETL Certified and with various built-in safety features, such as a tip-over safety switch, overheat protection, and cool-touch housing.
  • With built-in WiFi connectivity, you can control this space heater through an app, which also displays the unit’s status and room temperature so you can increase or decrease the heat as needed. Perfect controls for a caregiver that needs to check in remotely.
  • Use simple voice commands to turn your Smart Tower Heater on or off using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

Find out more and where to buy at Atomi.

Ecobee 3 Lite Smart Thermostat

  • Control straight from the app or your smart home assistant. Hands free control!
  • Can be controlled remotely by a caregiver.
  • Can be programmed with a schedule to suit individual needs.
  • Smart room sensors available to make sure the temperature in your room is just right!

Find out more and where to buy at Ecobee.

Do you have a favorite temperature control product that you’d like to share about? Comment below!

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This list is provided for informational purposes only as APTAT does not endorse specific products or brands. When purchasing be sure to thoroughly research the product features to ensure it will meet your individual needs.

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