Home automation or the smart home, has been an increasingly popular category the past few holiday seasons. With more and more people looking to make their home a bit smarter, so that they are able to control their home using their smartphone. And now in recent years with the introduction of Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri, using your voice. There are plenty of great smart home products available, and we’ve picked out the best that are currently available for 2017.
When thinking about a smart home, it’s important to start on one platform. Which for Android users should be either Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant. With Google Assistant being built into just about every Android smartphone, that will likely be the more popular choice. But there are some speakers or hubs, that will work for both assistants. One of the better Amazon Alexa speakers is the new Echo Plus. This has a built-in hub, allowing you to connect your smart home products much easier and seamlessly. Of course, it does have a speaker built-in and you can easily stream music over WiFi. We also have the Google Home, or if you want to go third-party, there’s also the JBL LINK family of speakers that have the Google Assistant. If you are looking to go portable, the JBL LINK 10 or LINK 20 will be a great choice. But if you want something to sit in your living room, the Google Home is also a good choice.
“OK Google, turn on the lights”. With just about every light bulb on this list, you’ll be able to give that command to the Google Assistant or Alexa. One of our favorites is the LIFX A19 bulbs. LIFX’s bulbs are great because there is no hub needed, which is something that Philips Hue cannot boast. These bulbs can be easily connected and then grouped by room if you wish to do so. They also work with other services like Samsung SmartThings and IFTTT. Another interesting light is the GE Lighting C, which is a light fixture with Alexa built in, so you don’t even need to buy an Echo.
How about cleaning your house? There are plenty of great robot vacuums available, in all sorts of price ranges. Of course, the Neato BotVac Connected is one of the more popular ones, since it works with Alexa. So users can command Alexa to turn on the BotVac and start cleaning your home. Of course BotVac Connected can also get its own schedules set up, and be controlled by your smartphone as well. All of that and much more are listed below. No matter your budget, there’s something for everyone to make their home a bit more automated.
Prices listed below are subject to fluctuation. This post is updated regularly to try and ensure the most accurate pricing at the time.