Smart Home Guide – Top Gadgets For 2022
Updated: Jun 6, 2022
The home is becoming smarter. No longer are you required to get up and walk to the "light switch" to turn the lights on. With the right gear, you can now control your lights and other smart home devices with your voice or from your phone. It can be difficult to pick the right smart home device, considering how many there are.
Before you purchase a smart home product, there are many things you should consider. First, ensure that your purchase device fits within your smart home ecosystem Apple's HomeKit, Google Assistant, or Amazon Alexa on Amazon's Echo Devices. Many products can be integrated with these ecosystems.
You should also consider the type of product you are buying. Smart doorbells can be purchased in either wired or battery-powered versions. Smart light bulbs come in both white and color models as well.
We have reviewed numerous smart devices across many categories to make it easy for you to pick the right ones. These are the top smart home devices available right now.
Best Smart Thermostat: Google Nest Learning
Pros: Excellent design, easy to use
Cons: Has some issues with HomeKit.
The Nest Learning Thermostat was the first smart thermostat and is still the best choice for most. It's therefore easy to recommend it as one of the top smart home devices. Now in its third generation, this device has a stylish and sleek design and can learn your habits to adjust automatically.
The Nest Learning Thermostat's simplicity of use is one of its best features. The thermostat's dial design allows you to control all aspects of the device, including temperature and settings. It works perfectly in Google Home and Google Assistant. The device can be integrated with Alexa, but there is no HomeKit support. The Ecobee Smart Thermostat is a good choice if you are looking for a HomeKit compatible thermostat.
The Nest Learning Thermostat is also beautiful and comes in various colors. Although the device costs about $200, it is one of the most affordable smart thermostat available.
Best Smart Lock: August Wi-Fi Smartlock
Pros: Works well with many smart home ecosystems and works with older locks
Cons: A little bulky and expensive
If you're looking for a smart lock with that can be monitored from the convenience of your smartphone, the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock is your lock. This lock replaces the internals of your current lock. This means you can still use the keys you already own. It works with Apple HomeKit and Alexa - plus, there's an app that makes it super simple to lock and unlock.
Although the lock can be a bit bulky in your home, August has worked hard to make it more comfortable. The new model is 45% smaller than the previous one. It also has some amazing, intelligent features, including the ability to view a complete history of locks and unlocks and create automations based upon your location. You can get it in Silver or Matte Black.
Although the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock looks great, there are some drawbacks. The lock is heavy and bulky. However, it can be purchased separately with a compatible keypad - although not everyone will need it. The lock comes in at $250, even if it's not on sale. It's still a good investment for most people.
Best Smart Bulb: Phillips Hue
Pros: Works in a wide range of ecosystems and is responsive and easy to use
Cons: Higher upfront costs
One of the most popular smart home products is smart light bulbs. Not only because they are easy to install, but also because lighting is such an integral part of our daily lives. Philips Hue is the smartest lighting system available.
A Hue Bridge is directed to connect to your Hue-compatible bulbs when you set up your Philips Hue system. Although there is a higher initial cost, your lights will respond faster to your instructions. You could also just get individual bulbs at a cheaper cost and use them with your voice assistant.
The Philips Hue lights can be used with the Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa as well as the Google Assistant. There's also a standalone app that is exceptionally well designed. This app lets you automate the smart lighting and control the color of your lighting. Although the app has seen a few changes over the years, the current version is very easy to use.
You can find a wide variety of light bulbs that will work with the Philips Hue ecosystem. There are basic white light bulbs as well as color bulbs, light strips, and outdoor lights. Some wall switches even work with Hue.
Just getting started? Try the Philips Hue White Smart Bulb Starter Kit - it includes four white bulbs and a Hue hub to get you off the ground fast.
Best Smart Switch: TP-Link Kasa Smart Dimmer Shift
Pros: Easy use, dimming support, low cost
Cons: There is no HomeKit support
Smart light switches are some of the most important smart home devices. They are more versatile than smart bulbs and can be used in a variety of ways. Smart bulbs, when switched off, will not be functional. Smart switches are different - they aren't lighting devices themselves, but control and automate your existing lighting equipment. The TP-Link Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch is an excellent choice if you want to get smart light switches without changing your existing lights.
This switch is versatile because of a number of factors. First off, it's easy to use. It has a simple button on the front and smaller buttons at its top for dimming. It's simple enough for guests to control the lights without being familiar with new technology.
Although the TP-Link Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch can be integrated with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, it does not support HomeKit. You will need to find alternatives if you are not part of Apple's ecosystem.
Another thing to remember about this switch is the fact that it will need to be hardwired into your home. If you aren't sure what to do, we recommend hiring an electrician to do this.
Best Smart Doorbell: Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2
Pros: Well-designed, excellent image quality
Cons: No integration with HomeKit or Google Assistant
Ring was the first to introduce smart doorbells, and Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 is a testament to that. It looks fantastic, has great image quality, and offers a variety of incredible features that will enhance your experience with the device.
The Video Doorbell Pro 2's dimensions are small and compact to fit most door frames. The front has an easy-to-use button and a camera that allows you to see what's going on outside.
Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2's video quality is a slide. The camera has a resolution of 1536p and a 150-degree field of view. It should be able to see all you need with great detail. To get the best out of the camera you will need to subscribe to Ring Protect. However, even if you don't have a subscription, you can view live feeds and receive notifications based on what's happening at your home.
There are so many smart features on the device. The device supports two-way audio and motion detection. The integration with Alexa is just a few of the many features. There is no integration with Apple's HomeKit or Google Assistant unfortunately, but it's a great enhancement of your home even without connecting it to one of these assistants.
Best Smart Smoke Detector: Google Nest Protect
Pros: Great design, easy to use, and works well
Cons: Although a bit pricey, it's still worth it.
Smart smoke detectors will notify you when smoke or carbon monoxide levels rise. This ensures that you are always aware of what is happening, even while you are away. Google Nest Protect is the most popular of these, seamlessly integrating into the Google Home app and featuring a design that will look amazing in your home.
The Nest Protect functions as a standard smoke detector. The Nest Protect will sound an alarm if it detects carbon monoxide or smoke. It can function with or without an Internet connection. It can send you notifications when the internet connection is established. You can also view a history of events in the app.
It's important to remember that Nest Protect does not alert the fire department about any smoke it detects - they will still need to be called. However, the Nest Protect will save you a precious few moments that can be a life saver.
Best Smart Power Outlet: iDevices Smart Wall Outlet
Pros: Well-designed, looks just like any other outlet, works with a wide range of ecosystems
Smart power outlets replace traditional outlets and give them smarter control. If you do not have the right tools, a professional can help you. The iDevices Smart Wall Outlet integrates with Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa. It also has buttons to control the power manually.
iDevices did a fantastic job in refining their app. It now allows you to see how much energy each device uses. It works with any smart home ecosystem that you select, as mentioned above. This means you can control it using your voice and your favorite apps.
What is the downside to the iDevices Smart Wall Outlet you ask? It is a bit expensive. The device costs $89.95 on iDevices' site and up to $100 at other retailers as of March 2022.
The outlet is available to anyone committed to building a seamless smart house. This outlet is may not be as feasible for renters or people who are moving shortly, because it requires some wiring and installation (we recommend hiring an electrician). It will be worth it if you are looking for a long-term solution.
Best Security Camera: Arlo Ultra 2
Pros: Well-designed, versatile, excellent image quality
Are you looking for a reliable, durable security camera that can be used in your home? We think the Arlo Ultra 2 is the best choice. Although this camera is quite expensive, the 4K resolution captures a very detailed image.
The best thing about the Arlo Ultra 2 smart home system is its compatibility with many other ecosystems. This includes Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, and Apple's HomeKit. However, HomeKit Secure Video won't work, and HomeKit supports only footage up to 1,080p.
You will need an Arlo Smart Hub to use the Arlo Ultra 2, unlike other Arlo cameras. This increases the initial cost but allows you to connect multiple cameras with the Smart Hub to create an all-in-one system. Arlo offers an excellent app and smart features that make the experience even more worth it.
There are a few downsides to this camera though. It can be pretty expensive to purchase the Arlo Ultra 2, especially when you consider that it requires a hub to use it properly. However, if you intend to place many cameras around your house, the system is viable.
Best Smart Plug: Belkin's Wemo Smart Plug
The pros: Compact and easy to use. It works with a wide range of ecosystems.
Cons: No energy monitoring
View the range on Amazon
The WeMo brand by Belkin has been producing great switches for quite some time. The newer Belkin Wemo Wi-Fi Smart Plug is an excellent example of why this range keeps making lists of the top smart home devices. It is small and well-designed and can be used with all major smart home ecosystems including Alexa, Google Assistant, and HomeKit.
Smart switches are devices that plug into a power outlet and allow users to control the power through their phones. This means you can turn an old device that was dumb into a smart one. Instead of plugging the Wemo Smart Plug into your power outlet, you can also install smart outlets permanently (see the section above).
The Wemo Smart Plug's compact size is one of its best features. It is small enough that you can still use the second outlet in the two-gang array. The device blends seamlessly into the background as well.
Although the Belkin WeMo Smart Plug works well, it is not perfect. Contrary to its higher-priced competitors, the device does not offer energy monitoring. It is an affordable option for smart-ifying appliances in your home. If you're looking for an alternative that offers energy monitoring, check out the TPLink Kasa Smart Plug.
To set up a smart home, it is crucial to bring together the best products that cover every aspect of it - be it lighting, wall sockets, security or safety. Referring to our list, you'll be able to assemble an effective smart home system that makes your life a lot easier without the hassle of too much research.
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