It's the 21st century. You'd think we'd have been ways to take someone's temperature by now without sticking a tube full of mercury into their mouth (or another part of the body that's even less pleasant). And there is! Infrared forehead thermometers have become popular in doctor's offices, at the store before you can shop, thanks to the pandemic, and even at home because they're fast and easy (there's no need to lodge something under your tongue). Moreover, they're completely contactless, which means less equipment to sterilize. I know a few people who have gotten in the habit of taking their temperature first thing in the morning to see if they havesymptoms, so when I saw this IR thermometer priced at a crazy-cheap $11, I knew it was the perfect gadget for our pandemic age. While inventory lasts, Daily Steals is offering this when you use discount code CNETHMO at checkout.
That's a CNET-exclusive deal, about 78% off the regular price of $50, and even less than half the $25 price it's listing for at Daily Steals right now.
I'll be honest: I wasn't inclined to trust an $11 IR thermometer, so Daily Steals shipped me a sample to try out. The radar-gun-shaped gadget arrived the other day, and while the documentation didn't inspire confidence (it came with a laminated quality control card labeled "Qualified Certificate") the device itself is awesome. I'll admit it's the first time I've ever used an infrared thermometer, but it works almost instantly and seemed perfectly accurate, pegging all the humans I tested as in the normal temperature range around 98.2-98.6 degrees, and also able to discern a wide range of temperatures when I measured objects around the office. It accurately detected hot and cold beverages, which implies it would be great for testing baby bottles. The rear display is color-coded, in case you need help discerning if a temperature is in a healthy range.
This isn't the only alternative to traditional thermometers. There's tympanic thermometry, for example, which uses an infrared probe in the ear canal, and axillary thermometry (under the armpit) which is mostly for infants. IR forehead measurements are more precise, though, and super easy to use. I can't believe I made do with tubes of mercury for so long. Goodbye, under-the-tongue thermometers.
This article was previously published. It has been updated to reflect the latest deal.
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