Talking of best smart home devices for 2020, today’s devices aren’t quite the same as it used to be as a technology was only revolving around phones and automobiles, but they can still transform your home into a smarter, more automated abode.
These smart home devices are game-changers, and as this tech grows, the way we interact with our homes is changing, too. Learn more about these top smart devices, what they can do for your home, and you. Welcome to the future.
|The Amazon Echo show 5 – best smart home devices
|Low, low price
Integrated how-to videos
No YouTube app
Makes Echo Spot redundant
|August Home Smart Lock – best smart home devices||Smaller hardware footprint
Intuitive and responsive app
|Ultra-simple installation not smoother
Limited Wi-Fi range
|Netgear Arlo Pro 3 – best smart home devices
|Weatherproof, wire-free cameras
High-quality 2K video
Smart A.I. features
Simple to install and use
Easy upgrade for existing Arlo owners.
|Minor performance issues with multiple 2K streams
Advanced features require a subscription
|Ecobee SmartThermostat – best smart home devices||Advanced Alexa functionality.
Remote room sensor.
|The Roomba s9+ – best smart home devices||Self-emptying dustbin.
Mediocre battery life.
A voice assistant
The first thing you’ll want to get is a virtual assistant to help you control your smart devices with just your voice. You can opt for a smart speaker, which only has audio, or you can go with a smart display, which has a display screen that lets you visually interact with your assistant as well.
The Amazon Echo show 5 is Amazon’s smart speaker that features Alexa, Amazon’s virtual assistant. The Echo 3rd Generation has excellent sound quality, so you can hear your playlist from music streaming services like Amazon Music, Apple Music, or iHeart Radio.
The Echo 3 retails for $100, and it comes in charcoal, heather gray, sandstone, or a bright twilight blue color. If you want a more affordable Echo Speaker, the Echo Dot with Clock retails for only $60 and does everything the Echo does, except its speakers aren’t quite as powerful. The Dot with Clock has an LED display on the front face that can show you the time, weather, or a timer. You can also go with an Echo Flex, which is a mini Echo that plugs into your wall, and only costs around $25. One of the reasons these gadgets should be on your smart home shopping list is that they work with many of the other products you buy.
Alexa responds to short commands that make life easier and more fun. You can set alarms, ask questions, order pizza, shop, play games, and more — just by using your voice. Plus, compatible gadgets let you depend on Alexa to tweak aspects of your smart home by doing things like turning down the thermostat or turning on a light.
If you’d prefer a smart display that has a screen and lets you make video calls, see song lyrics, and watch your security camera and video doorbell feeds, the Echo Show 5 is a great option because, at a retail price of $80, it’s even more affordable than a regular Echo speaker. Show 5 is a compact display, though, and if you’re looking for a larger screen, the Echo Show 8 is only $20 more.
On the other hand, maybe you’d rather go with a smart speaker not associated with Amazon, but love the easy-to-move design of the Echo Dot. In that case, look no further than the streamlined Nest Mini. The Nest Mini has an eco-friendly design, and it comes in chalk, charcoal, a bright coral color, or a bright blue color. Similar in size and shape to the Echo Dot, the Nest Mini 2 is powered by Google Assistant, which is in many ways smarter than Alexa. The multilingual assistant can control your smart devices, create a shopping list, answer questions, and much more. Plus, it connects to oodles of smart home devices for voice control. However, Alexa is compatible with more smart devices.
If you want a Google Assistant-powered smart display, we like the Nest Hub Max. It has a 10-inch display, gesture control, built-in security features, and it even has a built-in Nest Cam.
The main difference from the Echo Show is the size of the display. Thanks to Amazon’s simple layout, you’re never really being shown too much information in a small space, though heading into an internet browser can be a bit fiddly.
The interface can also be frustrating to navigate. There’s no physical home button, and you need to pull down a menu from the top side of the screen to find a shortcut back to the home screen. The Alexa voice assistant also can’t jump to particular menus through voice commands, meaning you’re either hands-free or hands-deep, while the things you can do through the screen are quite limited.
The main feature is Alexa’s routines, which enables you to connect to other smart home devices and link them up into singular commands: such as boiling the smart kettle and playing a radio station when you get up in the morning, or dimming the lights when you’re settling in for the night.
The Echo Show 5 apes the design of the 10-inch Echo Show, except with a more compact 5.5-inch display, around the size of a smartphone screen – hence the ‘5’ labeling.
Whereas most smart displays are compared to tablets, the shape and size of the Show 5 – and its 960 x 480 resolution – means you’re not getting much visually that you wouldn’t from watching videos on your phone. It might be unfair to compare it to a handheld device, but the design choices here seem to be asking for the comparison.
The Show 5 also features the rounded mesh casing of the previous Show, with physical volume buttons, a mute button for Alexa, and a shutter you can physically slide over the camera lens, for the more privacy-minded among you. Amazon knows privacy is on your mind, so has included a physical camera shutter.
Along the rear is a power port – like the rest of the Echo range, you’ll need to keep the Show 5 plugged in at all times. If you’re keeping it in one place, that won’t be an issue, though if you’re hoping for a smart display you can flexibly use across different rooms in the house, this isn’t it. (Getting two would be something of a solution: hence why Amazon was offering a pair at discount for those who pre-ordered before launch.)
You do also get a micro USB port on the rear, but its intended purpose isn’t immediately clear. While it’d be handy to be able to save a plug socket near your bed and charge, for instance, a phone from the Echo Show 5, it’s unlikely you’re going to have a micro USB to micro USB cable, or micro USB to Lightning cable with which to charge an external device. A full size, a powered USB port would be more useful as a result.
A smart lock
When your home has a smart lock, there’s no need to worry about fumbling for your keys when it’s dark or having to leave a key under the mat for a pet sitter. Today’s options install in minutes and give you convenience combined with peace of mind.
We like the August Smart Lock 3rd Generation because it retrofits over your existing deadbolt, making it super-easy to install. You can usually find the 3rd-gen August Smart lock for around $100. Alternatively, we like the Nest x Yale lock as well. The keyless touchscreen deadbolt allows users to lock and unlock a door from just about anywhere, and create passcodes to manage access for family members, friends, and guests.
August Home Smart Lock
This latest iteration of the August Home Smart Lock breaks free from the bonds of its predecessors’ need for a bridge to operate remotely. Thank its built-in Wi-Fi connection, the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock connects to your home’s wireless network without the need for a bridge or other additional hardware.
Beyond that, it’s one of the simplest best home smart locks to installing and setup. Plus, it’s able to retain your existing lock – so you don’t need new keys. What’s impressive is that the company adds in the Wi-Fi connection, while shrinking the overall size of the lock. It is 45% smaller in volume and 20% slimmer, making it a sleek little lock, and comes in either silver or matte black plastic.
In addition to using the app to remotely operate the lock, it supports Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple’s Siri. Meaning, it integrates nicely to just about any smart home platform. Some advanced features make it a premier offering, like virtual keys that work on a set schedule, and automatic lock/unlock as you approach or leave your home.
As with every other August home smart lock, the Wi-Fi Smart Lock replaces your existing interior thumb turn mechanism and uses the rest of your existing lock hardware, including the keys. It has the same puck-shaped design as previous generations, but at 2.8 by 1.8 inches (HD), it’s noticeably smaller. The lock comes in matte black or silver and sports a textured grip around the outer edge and a removable magnetic faceplate with a backlit August logo status indicator. To operate it manually, simply turn the lock to the left (unlock) or to the right (lock).
The back contains two wing latches that secure the lock to the mounting plate and a reset button. Under the hood are a Bluetooth radio and a 2.4GHz Wi-Fi radio. The built-in Wi-Fi is what sets this lock apart from the previous iterations of August locks, which all require a bridge to connect to your home network. The lock is powered by two CR123 batteries (included), which, under normal conditions, are only expected to last up to three months before requiring replacement, so be sure to lay in a good supply of spare batteries.
Also included in the box are a mounting plate, an optional mounting cover plate for thinner doors, four tailpiece adapters, a strip of adhesive tape, a door sensor, and a quick start guide.
August locks have no issues with other smart home devices and the Wi-Fi Smart Lock is no different. You can lock and unlock it using the August mobile app (for Android and iOS) or with the Apple HomeKit app, and you can create HomeKit Automations and Scenes. You can also lock and unlock your door using Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri voice commands, and you can create IFTTT applets to have it interact with numerous third-party smart devices. Moreover, the lock integrates seamlessly with home automation and security platforms from Honeywell, Logitech, SimpliSafe, and Samsung.
The August mobile app opens to a Keychain screen with panels for each of your homes (you can use the app to manage multiple locks in multiple locations). Tap a home panel to open the lock screen where you can lock and unlock your door by tapping the large circle in the center of the screen. The circle is solid red when the door is locked and solid green when it is unlocked. A broken red circle tells you that the lock is engaged (locked) but the door is open, and a broken amber circle means that the lock is unengaged (unlocked) and the door is ajar.
Along the bottom edge of the screen are buttons for Lock, Camera, Activities, Guest List, and Settings. The Lock button takes you back to the Lock screen and the Camera button opens a live feed if you have an August View Doorbell Camera installed. The Activities button displays a timeline of all lock events including manual and app-controlled locking and unlocking, and door openings and closings. When the lock is accessed using the app, it will show you who locked or unlocked the door, and when the event took place. Use the Guest List button to add users and give them permanent, recurring, or temporary access to the lock. You can send the invitation via email or text message.
A security camera and video doorbell
Investing in a video doorbell lets you see who’s knocking at the door without getting up from the couch. A security camera can provide added peace of mind too, as most outdoor models allow you to watch the happenings around your house from anywhere, all through an app on your phone. Many provide two-way audio, night vision, and motion alerts as well.
The nest is one of the leading brands in the smart home market and offers cameras for both indoor and outdoor use. The Nest Cam Indoor, for example, comes with a magnetic stand and has a speaker, so you can talk to a person or pet even if you’re not nearby.
Arlo Pro 3 is one of the best camera system. It is expensive but affordable and cheap here, but it offers a crisp day and night-vision image and natural two-way audio conversation in a two-camera weatherproof system. Our favorite video doorbell is the Ring Video Doorbell 2. Even though it’s been out for a while, it runs on battery power and it has a slew of features.
This new model boosts image resolution ranging from the Arlo Pro 2’s 1080p to a sharper, more vibrant 2K (2560 x 1440 pixels) with support for high dynamic range (HDR), which promises better video quality in very dark or bright areas. A 160-degree field of view may be narrower than the Arlo Ultra 4K’s generous 180 degrees, but it’s a noticeable step up from the 130-degrees offered by the outgoing model.
In use, Arlo Pro 3’s 2K image quality is a noticeable improvement over the previous-generation camera (and a huge leap from the 720p supported by the original Arlo system). While it doesn’t have quite the clarity you’ll get from Arlo Ultra 4K or wired Nest Cam IQ models, it’s still very good indeed.
The enhanced resolution allows you to take advantage of the camera’s 12x digital zoom without images immediately disintegrating into a blurry mess. Push beyond 3x zoom, though, and quality will noticeably degrade. Arlo Pro 3 is equipped with a smart Auto Zoom and Tracking feature, which is handy for security monitoring. Sadly, as we found with the Arlo Ultra 4K when the feature is enabled, the camera’s resolution is dropped to 1080p.
At night, Arlo Pro 3’s color night vision feature requires the camera’s integrated spotlight to be illuminated. The resulting images are certainly more natural than the standard, spooky monochrome pictures produced by competitors. However, while the range is good, color night vision suffers from the blurriness and noise typically associated with high ISO photography. With the spotlight disabled, the camera reverts to a standard night vision setting. Again, the illuminated range is good, and while monochrome images are also a little noisy, Arlo Pro 3’s night vision provides greater sharpness and clarity than many competitors.
While Nest often takes the plaudits for smart cam A.I., the Arlo Pro 3 is equipped with an admirable array of enhancements that add real convenience and utility. Sadly, most are locked behind an Arlo Smart subscription service, priced from $3 per month. A 3-month free trial is available on setup, so you can try out the features and see if the upgrade makes sense.
They include advanced object detection, which helps the camera to differentiate between people, vehicles, animals, and packages (the latter is currently in beta). Smoke and carbon dioxide alarm detection send you a smartphone notification when a camera detects an audible alert. U.S. subscribers also get the benefit of an e911 feature, which allows you to call emergency services with a single tap on your smartphone.
Your heating and cooling system is probably a part of your home you don’t think about too often – until the temperature’s not quite right. A smart thermostat could make climate controls even more integrated into your life.
Our favorite smart thermostat is the Ecobee SmartThermostat. It has Alexa built-in, and it comes with a room sensor to help heat and cool your house more efficiently.
Ecobee Smart Thermostat With Voice Control
At first glance the Ecobee SmartThermostat with voice control looks just like the Ecobee4. It’s the same size (4.2 by 4.2 by 1.0 inches, HWD) and has a glossy black screen/bezel over a white enclosure. You wouldn’t know it from looking, but the new thermostat uses a glass screen to cover the 3.5-inch, 480-by-320-pixel color touch display. The two microphone holes on either side of the screen cover a pair of digital microphones that offer echo cancellation and more advanced audio processing than the analog microphones used in the Ecobee4.
The new thermostat is equipped with a speaker (at the bottom of the enclosure) that is twice as powerful as the one used in the previous model and also offers a wider dynamic range. There’s an LED strip on the top of the device that glows blue when you use an Alexa voice command and red when the built-in microphone is turned off. The backplate contains 12 terminals for connecting to heating and air conditioning, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, air ventilation devices, and other HVAC accessories.
Ecobee SmartThermostat includes a single remote room SmartSensor (pictured below) that helps keep temperatures uniform throughout your house, especially in rooms that are far away from the thermostat. The new sensor offers extended range and longer battery life (up to five years) than the previous model. Extra SmartSensors can be purchased for $79 for a pack of two.
The thermostat is powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core CPU, 4GB of flash memory, and 512MB of DDR4 RAM. Inside are temperature, humidity, proximity, and occupancy sensors, as well as far-field voice technology. The proximity and occupancy sensors tell the thermostat if you are home or away and allow it to switch to a preset target temperature to conserve energy, and the far-field tech lets you issue voice commands from across the room. Also under the hood is dual-band Wi-Fi circuitry that allows you to connect the thermostat to a 2.4GHz or 5GHz Wi-Fi radio band (the Ecobee4 is limited to the 2.4GHz band).
As with the Ecobee4, the Smart Thermostat With Voice supports Amazon Alexa voice technology, which means you can use it as you would an Amazon Echo device, but this time around Ecobee has added support for Alexa Calling, Messaging, and Drop-In. In addition to Amazon Music, iHeart Radio, and Pandora music streaming, you can now stream Spotify music and play it directly from the thermostat or stream it to a Bluetooth speaker.
The Ecobee SmartThermostat also works with Apple’s HomeKit platform, supports Google Assistant and Siri voice commands, interacts with other smart home devices that support IFTTT (If This Then That) applets, and can be added to the SmartThings, Vera, and Wink home automation systems.
You control the thermostat using the same Android and iOS mobile app as the Ecobee4. It can also be controlled using the touch screen, the above-mentioned voice services, or from a PC using a web console. The app’s home screen shows the current room temperature and has a slider for setting the target temperature.
A robot vacuum
A robot vacuum can be life-changing, as it can clean your floors for you. Some robot vacuums, like the Ecovacs Deebot Ozmo 950, also have a mopping feature, so your robot can vacuum and mop your floors. However, our absolute favorite robot vacuum of 2019 is the Roomba s9+. It is the Ferrari of robot vacuums — it empties itself, locks in allergens, and it cleans the floors better than most upright vacuums.
The s9+ has terrific navigation capabilities and rarely required manual intervention in testing, something important for a completely hands-off experience. The Roomba s9+ wiggles its way around chairs and tables with ease. Its relatively low profile also allows it to make its way under most low-clearance furniture.
It also has the strongest suction in a robot vacuum. In testing, the s9+ sucked up dust, hair, and all other manners of debris with no issue at all. It also changes its suction strength automatically depending on whether it’s cleaning the carpet (heavier suction) or wood and tile (lighter suction). For the most part, it cleans in a back-and-forth pattern in open spaces, and its D shape is great for tough-to-reach areas. In testing, it would graze against walls, allowing the side brush to grab dust and debris in corners.
Rather than the standard circular shape you see on most robot vacuums (include every other Roomba), The Roomba s9+ has a D shape similar to the Neato Botvac D4 Connected. This allows it to get deeper into corners and align itself against walls.
Aside from the change in shape, it also looks a lot sleeker than the i7+, with an eye-catching copper-like lid that matches the accents on the Clean Base (more on this in a moment). It’s also smaller, measuring 12.3 inches in diameter and 3.5 inches tall, compared with the previous model’s 13.4-by-3.7-inch dimensions.
The top of the vacuum is home to the RCON sensor (room confinement), clutter sensor, a camera, and buttons for Clean/Power, Spot Clean, and Home. There is also an LED ring indicator that glows red when charging, white when cleaning, and blue when connecting to Wi-Fi. The side of the vacuum houses a wall sensor. Beneath the lid, you’ll find the dustbin and filter along with the carrying handle.
The bottom of the s9+ is home to a corner brush, multi-surface rubber brushes, brush caps, a brush latch, a brush frame release tab, charging contacts, and cliff sensors. It also houses the dirt disposal port, floor tracking sensor, and rear caster wheel.
Once finished cleaning, the s9+ automatically heads to the Clean Base to empty itself. I’d like to stress just how nice this feature is. After all, you’re likely buying a robot vacuum to do less manual labor. Without having to empty the vacuum after every cleaning session, the process becomes truly hands-free. Sure, you have to change the bag in the Clean Base every once in a while, but compared with nearly any other vacuum out there, robot or otherwise, it doesn’t get any easier than this.
To pair the s9+ to your phone, you first need to download the iRobot Home app, which is available for Android and iOS devices. Setup is as simple as creating an account, choosing your specific vacuum model, selecting your Wi-Fi network and entering the password, then pressing the Spot and Home buttons on the vacuum until you hear it beep.
Once connected, the main screen of the app features a big Clean button to start and stop vacuuming, with the battery level displayed above. The bottom of the screen has tabs for Schedule, History, Smart Maps, Help, and Settings. Tap the Schedule tab to assign the vacuum to clean on a specific day and time. The History tab brings up a log of your cleaning sessions. Smart Maps shows the layout of your house, which takes a few rounds for the vacuum to learn. You can then label specific rooms to send the vacuum to if you don’t want it to clean the entire home.
The usefulness of Alexa, and integration with WikiHow, is enough to justify the low price of the Echo Show 5, even if the lack of some features grates on us. This isn’t quite the definitive smart display, but it is one we can imagine in a lot of people’s homes.
August Wi-Fi Smart Lock – best smart home devices
August adds Wi-Fi while shrinking the overall size of its hardware considerably, making this a better component option.
Robust third-party integrations, multi-platform support, and ease of use are all good reasons to consider the August Wi-Fi home Smart Lock. It’s not only the smallest August lock yet, but it’s also the first to offer embedded Wi-Fi instead of requiring an add-on bridge. Features are plentiful and include Auto-Lock and Unlock, support for Alexa, Google, and Siri voice commands, support for Apple HomeKit and IFTTT applets, and seamless integration with a variety of home automation and home security platforms. As with most smart locks, it’s more expensive than a non-connected model, and you will have to keep a good supply of CR123 batteries on hand. That said, if you’re looking for a stylish smart lock that is easy to install and offers broad third-party support, the August Wi-Fi Home Smart Lock is your best bet and our Editors’ Choice.
While the Arlo Ultra 4K captured the headlines with its flashy UHD video resolution, we think the Arlo Pro 3 is a more worthy and economical successor to our favorite smart cam for the last two years, the Arlo Pro 2. It’s certainly not cheap, but Arlo Pro 3’s enhanced image quality, integrated security features, and simple app controls make it a fabulous choice for home surveillance. If you’re happy to invest in a monthly subscription, you’ll benefit from an extended suite of useful A.I. features that make the Arlo Pro 3 one of the smartest systems around. Meanwhile, owners of first- and second-generation Arlo systems have a reasonable path to upgrade their cameras and/or SmartHubs. We’ve been waiting for a competitive smart cam to knock Arlo Pro 2 off its perch – perhaps it was inevitable that the Arlo Pro 3 would do the job.
The Ecobee Smart Thermostat with voice control is loaded with features including Alexa support, a touch display, a remote room sensor, and interoperability with lots of other smart home devices.
With the Smart Thermostat With Voice Control, Ecobee improves upon its predecessor by adding a more powerful speaker, digital microphones, dual-band Wi-Fi radios, and enhanced Alexa capabilities. Like the Ecobee4, it works with numerous third-party smart devices and hubs, supports Apple’s HomeKit platform and Alexa, Google, and Siri voice commands, and performs wonderfully. At this cost it’s a bit pricey, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a thermostat that offers this many features, including the popular Nest Learning Thermostat.
iRobot’s Roomba s9+ is expensive, but its intelligent navigation, super-powerful suction, and ability to empty itself make it the best robot vacuum.
The iRobot Roomba s9+ is the strongest, most autonomous robot vacuum. That said, if you’re looking for a truly hands-free cleaning experience, and you want the most powerful vacuum possible, The Roomba s9+ is to one to get, and our Editors’ Choice. The $999.99 i7+ remains a strong buy, even if it isn’t quite as powerful. Of course, you can also spend less. The aforementioned Neato Botvac D4 Connected has a similar D shape to the s9+ and longer battery life for $499.99. And for just $229, the Ecovacs Deebot N79S offers app control and Alexa compatibility. Neither is nearly as powerful as the s9+, however, and neither can empty itself. Ultimately, it comes down to how much you’re willing to pay for convenience.
If you are still here, this is a bonus for you.
Light bulbs or switches
Philips Hue light bulbs – best smart home devices
You may already use energy-efficient light bulbs in your home, and installing smart bulbs is the next logical step to take. Besides saving money, they let you customize the way your home looks and even turn lights on and off from another location, as long as you have internet access and the complementing app.
Philips Hue bulbs respond to voice commands and settings changes from your smartphone app. Some bulbs, like Sengled A19 smart bulbs, don’t require a hub, which can make it easier (and cheaper) to set up smart lighting in your home.
If you want to keep your regular non-smart bulbs, but you still want smart lighting, you can opt for smart light switches instead. You can still voice-control your lights and power your lights on and off remotely. The benefit? A smart light switch is a permanent way to get smart lighting, as you don’t have to change it out (like you have to change out a bulb). The downside is that you have to deal with a little bit of hassle upfront, as smart light switches take some effort to install. WeMo’s Smart Light Switch is one of our favorite options.
Some people also like smart plugs because they allow you to voice-control the power on virtually any electronic device. Smart plugs are especially useful during the holidays, as they let you turn your holiday lights on and off with your voice.
Lighting at home has become convenient with the intelligent Philips Hue LED Lighting System (must have home gadgets ). You can say goodbye to the conventional on/off the wall switch and experience the new-age smart lighting system that can be controlled through your smartphone. The lighting system is controlled with the help of a mobile app through a Wi-Fi bridge. You can turn the lights on or off remotely, or schedule them to turn on or off with your phone or tablet. The high-quality energy-saving LED lights are ideally suited for home and office environments.
Philips has worked hard to develop its app, which has seen a great deal of improvement in the years since the smart bulb’s initial release. The default home screen shows you your available rooms, allowing you to control all their bulbs as a group. You can tap on the switch to the right of the screen to turn them on to their last setting. The Philips Hue app has recently undergone a redesign and is now much easier to use. But, if you use the default settings, you are nowhere near using the Philips Hue bulbs to their potential. The real fun starts when you tap the room’s icon on the left of the screen, which allows you to customize the exact bulb color. The easiest way to do this is with Philips’ pre-configured scenes, which range from ‘Spring Blossom’ (a cool, white light) through to ‘Savanna Sunset’ (a much richer yellow hue). If you want to get granular you can adjust specific settings to create your scenes or even have the Hue app create a light scheme based on an imported picture. Playing around with bright, primary colors will make a perfect accessory for a party atmosphere.
Of much great importance is the routines section of the app. From here you will be able to set the lights to automatically turn on and off when you arrive at, and subsequently leave, the house, as well as allowing you to have the lights turn on and off automatically at different times.
There are a couple of switches that Phillips has created to use with its Hue bulbs(must have home gadgets). As we mentioned earlier, these enable you to control the bulbs without using the app. This not only saves you from having to reach for your smartphone, but it means guests who don’t have the app can still control the lights.
There is a variety of choices; Philips Hue White, Philips Hue White Ambiance, Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance, Philips Hue LightStrip, Philips Hue filament smart bulbs, and Philips Hue lamps with integrated lights.
Philips understands what the smart home needs right now. It’s produced a wide range of different LED bulbs, which create a complete lighting ecosystem, and it’s made an effort to integrate with almost every third-party service under the sun.
This is really what the smart home needs right now. All of this means that the Philips Hue bulbs (must have home gadgets) are among the best smart bulbs on the market today, but the real competition is from traditional ‘dumb’ bulbs, which can be bought at a fraction of the cost.
The Philips Hue range has grown considerably, and it now has led bulbs for almost every type of light fixture. It’s also got some smart switches that allow you to control your lights the old fashioned way. The bulbs themselves produce a nice quality of light that’s much better than the harsh white light that used to be associated with LED bulbs.
After a couple of key updates, the Philips Hue app is in a pretty good state. It’s quick and easy to turn your bulbs on and off and it’s also no trouble to set custom colors and scenes. Finally, Philips Hue integrates with an impressive number of third-party services, meaning that it makes it as easy as possible to get the bulbs speaking to the rest of your smart home. You will need to have the Philips Hue Bridge plugged into your router for the lights to work.
They’ve come down in price over the years, but Philips Hue bulbs are still affordably expensive than their non-smart equivalents. If you’re going to purchase them then you’re going to need to make the most out of the bulbs’ smart functionality.
Philips Hue lighting system bulbs – best smart home devices
The Philips Hue lighting (must have home gadgets) range has evolved into a formidable presence in the smart home scene. All these models mean that it’s possible to completely overhaul your entire lighting system to make it the internet connection. The single biggest issue, however, is cost: individual bulbs are pricey, and that’s before you start factoring in the switches. Still, if you’re prepared to fully invest, few other smart home gadgets feel as convenient as Philips Hue’s light bulbs, lamps, and switches.
If you’re prepared to invest in the complete ecosystem, then Philips Hue does offer the best smart lighting solution around. Philips offers almost everything you could need to build a smart lighting system, and its integration with third-party services allows you to fill in any blanks.
But, if you’re hoping to get away with investing in a couple of bulbs and calling it a day then you might end up being disappointed as it can end up feeling like a hassle having to use your phone to control your lights.