How to Choose the Best Smart Plug for Your Home
How do you choose the best smart home outlet? Which functions and features must the best smart plug have to suit your needs? Read our guide and make an informed choice.
Smart or “intelligent” devices appear to be more and more present, if not more necessary, in our lives. This is how humankind is heading in a safe direction: intelligent house or Smart Home.
Just as today we have a smart phone and we could not imagine life without it, in the not too distant future we will no longer imagine a home without the most “smart” facilities.
A seemingly small step towards obtaining a smart home is the purchase and installation of a smart plug or smart electrical outlet.
The many advantages that such an outlet offers will convince you of the need to purchase one. Read below to find out how you choose the best smart plug for your home.
Table of Contents
What Are the Advantages of a Smart Plug?
You probably wonder what makes it worth the term “smart”. Well, this plug does much more than allow you to connect to a power source.
It gives you the ability to control your devices connected to this outlet remotely via an internet connection and a special phone application. Besides, it also helps you to make important energy savings.
You could find such an outlet very practical in situations where it is necessary to start or stop the appliances from a distance. Suppose you do not remember whether or not you let the air conditioner running or the iron plugged in.
Or maybe you might want to start some appliances beforehand, for example the electric oven to be warmed up when you get home. You may have this level of control with the best intelligent plug.
You will also receive notifications on your phone about any electrical malfunction, and you can also check the level of power consumption for each device on your phone.
How Do You Choose the Best Smart Plug?
Being a product that is gaining more and more popularity every day, it is normal for many models with more or less special features to appear on the market.
Since the price of such a plug can sometimes reach even a few tens of pounds, you can not choose any model. That’s why it’s a good idea to be informed about this intelligent outlet before deciding to buy a particular model.
In order to help you in your choice, we have prepared a shopping guide in which we present what functions and features should the best intelligent plug have to deserve your money.
So, in your choice, take into account the following important issues:
For smartphone operation, the smart plug connects to the home Wi-Fi network through a Linux platform. This makes it possible for you to access and control it remotely, as long as the home internet is working and your controlled device is connected to the internet.
The aspect you need to be careful about is compatibility. You will not be able to use a smart plug if it’s not compatible with your device.
So, before buying, check the operating systems (IOS, Android, or Windows) with which the smart plug is compatible.
Which Features and Functions Should the Best Smart Plug Have?
Control from any mobile device – once the connection between the plug and the device is completed, you will have absolute control over its functionality, meaning you can turn it on or stop the power supply, and thus control the connected devices.
First check that the smart socket you want can withstand the electrical charge of the devices you want to connect.
Programming – the best smart plug also gives you the ability to program the start and stop time. This feature may be useful if you know you will not be able to connect your phone to the internet to control the outlet directly.
Reports – Better devices have the ability to deliver a report after each on or off turn to make sure the action you ordered on your device has been running successfully.
Overload alert – when you encounter such electricity problems, you will receive a notification on your phone.
Consumption measurement – a feature that lets you check the power consumption of each device in your home. All the data will be saved in an archive, and you will be able to figure out which device consumes the most energy.
You will basically be able to find out where your home consumption problems are and try to solve them now.
Safety for children – we know that children are very attracted to such objects. Especially if it is a new object in the house, if it lights up and if it is said that it is not allowed to walk to it, the child will feel very attracted to this outlet.
The best intelligent smart plug will, however, be safe enough not to endanger the safety of the child if it has access to it.
The warranty of a smart plug must be at least 2 years. A good supplier will provide you with this warranty period as well as the possibility to extend this period.
However, as technology is constantly evolving, over 2 years you are likely to want to replace your smart socket with a more advanced one that gives you more control options.
It’s normal to be interested in the company that produces the best smart socket. Even if we can not call it the best, we can give you some examples of companies that have built up a good reputation among users who have been pleased with the performance of their devices.
Depending on the number of functions that their sockets offer, but also the quality / price ratio, the most recommended brands are: TP-Link, D-Link, Edimax, Panasonic, or Fibaro.
Before buying a product, especially if you buy it online, we recommend that you consult the opinions of other buyers in order to have a fair view of the smart plug that you want to buy.
Recommended Smart Plugs
Taking into account the above criteria and recommendations, studying the current market offer and user reviews, we present you below some models of smart plugs that offer excellent quality/price ratio.
- Amazon Smart Plug works with Alexa to add voice control to any electrical socket.
- Schedule lights, coffee machines and appliances to turn on and off automatically, or control them remotely when you're away.
- Simple to set up and use: plug in, open the Alexa App and start using your voice.
- Compatibility - Works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for Voice Control and IFTTT;
- No Hub Required - Works with any Wi-Fi router without the need for a separate hub or paid subscription service;
- Remote Access - Control devices connected to the Smart Plug wherever you use the free Kasa app on your smartphone (Android 4.1 or higher/iOS 8 or higher);
- Compatibility - works with Amazon Alexa (Echo and Echo Dot) and Google Assistant for voice control (Alexa device and Google Home device sold separately) and IFTTT
- No hub required - works with any Wi-Fi router without the need for a separate hub or paid subscription service
- Remote access - control devices connected to the smart plug wherever you have Wi-Fi using the free Kasa app on your smartphone (Android 4.1 or higher/iOS 8 or higher)
- SAFETY DESIGN and SET UP EASILY----The socket slot with Sliding Safety Cover will prevent children from inserting fingers or other objects into it.Simply plug TECKIN mini outlet into an electrical outlet, connect a device to the Smart Plug, and wirelessly control your device using a tablet or phone. A secured 2.4GHz WiFi network is required.
- REMOTE CONTROL----Control your electrical items via your phone whenever and wherever you are after downloading the FREE APP Smart Life as long as there is a network. Ideal for someone who can not move around very well and needs easy access to turn on/off a device.
- VOICE CONTROL----Compatible with Amazon alexa, Google home assistant and IFTTT, control your home appliances with the smart plug by simply giving voice commands to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. No Hub Required, the smart plug SP27 works without the need for a separate hub or paid subscription service.
- Requires the Hive Hub (if you don't have Hive Active Heating) which connects all your Hive devices so you can control them with the Hive app.
- Hive Active Plug works like an adaptor: Plug it into your wall socket then plug appliances into it as normal
- Control your appliances from your smartphone
- REMOTE CONTROL - Even when you are not at home, you can control the power-on/off via Smart Life app, which can be free downloaded from App Store or Google Play. Easy to use and install, required a secured 2.4GHz Wi-Fi connection.
- VOICE CONTROL - Control your home appliances with the smart plug by simply giving voice commands to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. No Hub Required, the smart plug SP23 works with any Wi-Fi router without the need for a separate hub or paid subscription service.
- SET SCHEDULE & TIMER - Schedule the Smart Plug to automatically power electronics on and off as needed, like setting lights to come on at dusk or turn off at sunrise. You can create a group for all of your smart devices and control them all with just one command. With the countdown timer feature, simply set a timer for the Smart Plug to turn off its appliance automatically.
Last update on 2019-10-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API