Over lockdown, finding ways to continue living life was our top priority, whether you were quickly trying to adjust to working and socialising remotely or just finding ways to fill the time. And in our modern world, the technology we have was able to step up and fill some of the void the yearlong lockdown left in our lives. So, while the pandemic isn’t over yet, I think it’s time to look back at the technology that has been helping us through isolation and has been allowing us to maintain some normality over these last two years.
Let’s start with a tech favourite, gaming consoles! When it comes to finding a way to fill the time, aside from the modern smartphone and PC, the gaming console reigns supreme and unchallenged in its might! With each console on the market bringing its own flare to the art of gaming, there was certainly plenty to choose from to help us get through the pandemic.
When I asked the team about what piece of tech helped them through the pandemic most, Megan said ‘Mine is definitely the (Nintendo) Switch! It meant I could try something new from the comfort of my own home, I enjoyed playing Animal Crossing alone and Super Mario games with the housemates’. The ability to play both alone and together, and experience something new at home, I feel this encapsulates how games consoles helped us to feel free while trapped! The Xbox one and Play Station Four were also mentioned often in our discussion, and clearly aided the team in staving off the madness of isolation! And as for the recently released PS5, at the time it became a hunted treasure appearing in stock only when the planets aligned, and exactly once each time the moon took on a certain shade of blue.
Streaming services live Disney plus, Netflix and Amazon prime thrived in the pandemic, with new customers flocking to them from the moment the world ground to a halt. The growing library available on each platform and new movies being released across them allowed them to fill the void the closing of the cinema had left behind. TV and Movies were in the hand of the viewer, and it couldn’t have come at a better time! It gave us options during a period in which our options were limited, and while it is small solace for the time we lost, it certainly helped. Movie nights with my roommates are some of my best memories of those quiet years, and for that I am grateful.
An honourable mention: VPNs (virtual private networks) expanded the library of region locked streaming by allowing the user to change their global location, expanding the library available to them. A huge help for those more tech savvy then me! (I can’t even install a Minecraft mod…)
We’ve all seen these in the last few years at least, video call services like Microsoft Teams, Facebook Messenger and Skype. Working from home depended on these! It was these services that allowed education to continue from home and these were especially important at a time when a way to socialise was the thing we needed most! Video calls with the family, streaming games with my brother, and being able to continue working from a distance while the world was frozen would all have been impossible without these programs. Although admittedly I did probably spend more time playing with silly backgrounds than I did getting things done.
Music streaming and downloads were another lifesaver we may’ve taken for granted during the pandemic, filling the time with everything from pop songs to podcasts. I thought it would be more fitting to put the most used app we get our music from rather than a speaker brand we enjoy because behind every set of speakers or pair of headphones is the music, and it needs to come from somewhere!
I think that music allowed for further emotional connection during those lonely times. Lockdown was a hard time for many and being able to find music that helped you to process what you were feeling is something that I think we can all appreciate. It was a gift to have the outlets we needed so readily available and so I am grateful that I had these things to help me through it.
What tech helped you through the worst of the pandemic? Join the conversation over on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
Hopefully this pandemic will soon be behind us, but until then, stay safe, and thanks for reading!