Technology is becoming more and more advanced by the day. Amidst this, owning a smart home has become very affordable. Smart homes devices are no longer associated with lavish lifestyles. Instead, they have become a necessity to provide comfort, convenience and to save more money (that’s right). From simple smart lightning to intricate devices and networks, we bring to you some of the best devices to assist you in your journey of building a smart home ecosystem.
Smart Light Bulb: Phillips
Smart lighting is one of the most basic yet impressive smart home devices. While there are a plethora of smart bulbs available in the market, Phillip’s Hue smart LED light bulbs have performed well consistently by offering a wide array of products including light bulbs, light strips, fixtures and a bunch of other lighting options. The Hue bulbs are connected with the help of a Hue Bridge which is plugged into the router. However, the latest products can connect with the phone over Bluetooth which means that you do not need the Hue Bridge.
- Compatible with Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Google Nest, Samsung SmartThings, etc.
- Easy to install
- Good connectivity
- More expensive than other options in the market
Smart Security Camera: Arlo Pro
Security cameras are a must for several households to keep a check on thefts or maybe even pet dogs when one is away from home. While there are plenty of options to choose from, the Arlo Pro 3 home security camera is one of the best in the market and offers the basic features such as night-vision, two-way audio, 160-degree view, coupled with advanced features such as motion tracking, automatic zooming, arm and disarm modes among others.
- 2K HDR video
- Compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit
- Advanced features like motion detection, colour night vision and automatic zooming
- Easy to setup
- Monthly subscription required for accessing certain features such as object detection and cloud recording.
- A bit on the pricey side.
Smart IoT Plug: Wipro 16 Amp Smart Plug
Imagine being able to control trivial things like switching on/off the light, regulating the fan, etc. with a simple command of voice. Well, IoT smart plugs like the Wipro Smart Plug offer these functionalities. The plug offers a physical switch and can also be controlled by the voice. The plug uses the Wipro Smart App that can monitor energy consumption and turn off devices that we forget to switch off manually.
- Supports Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
- Can support large appliances such as the microwave oven.
- Easy to setup
- No extra hub required
- Resetting energy consumption stat can be tedious.
Price: Rs. 4,190 (Discounted prices begin from: Rs. 1,999)
Smart Thermostat: Ecobee
The Ecobee thermostat is one of the best smart thermostats available in the market. This device is sort of a hybrid of a smart thermostat and a smart speaker. The smart thermostat incorporates sensors which read the temperature of the room and sense occupancy, if any. The thermostat then adjusts the AC or heat according to these parameters.
The device has an in-built Alexa speaker which means that it is not only capable of regulating the house temperature but can also stream music, make calls and perform other functionalities.
- Built-in Alexa speaker
- Supports Google Assistant and Siri
- High-quality speakers
- Dual-band WiFi
- Does not support every HVAC system
Price – Around Rs. 41,500
Please note that if you are looking for a budget-friendly option, you can consider the Emerson Sensi WiFi Smart Thermostat which provides most of the essential functionalities at a lower price (roughly Rs. 31,000).
Smart Speaker: Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Gen) With Clock
Amazon’s latest ‘3rd gen Echo Dot with a clock‘ is an upgrade to the Amazon’s 2018 3rd gen echo dot. The flashy LED clock display can be made available for a premium price. The echo speaker also responds to verbal requests of the user such as showing the temperature.
- The echo dot clock brings out the best features of the 3rd gen echo dot of 2018 with an added LED clock enhancing user experience.
- Displays additional information such as weather
- To an extent reduces the wallet-friendly nature of the 3rd gen Echo Dot.
- The colour temperature of the LED display cannot be adjusted in the dark.
Price: Rs. 5,499 (Discounted price may start from Rs. 4,499)
Smart Display: Google Nest Hub
The Google Nest hub is a smart device which in a way couples the features of smart speakers and smart displays, offering a multitude of functionalities. It is a tablet-shaped device which is attached to a wedge-shaped base. The device has a seven-inch screen and a light sensor at the top. It also has two microphones on either side.
- The display of the max hub shows the smart home functions and the google assistant helps in controlling the smart home devices.
- Supports Netflix
- Integrated apps such as Youtube help in accessing videos easily.
- Does not support certain applications such as G-Suite
- Does not have a camera
- With only two microphones, the audio quality of the device is relatively poor.
Starting price: Rs. 7,999
Mesh Router: Google Nest WiFi
Last but not the least, you need to connect all these smart devices. This is where a mesh router comes in to provide a strong WiFi signal throughout the house. The Google Nest WiFi is one such mesh router system and is particularly handy for Google smart homes. Google Nest can be used to provide a signal over a wide range at impressive speeds.
- Easy to setup
- Built-in Google Assistant
- Good performance
- No USB ports
- Lacks WiFi 6 support
Read More: WireX – September Issue