With more and more people heading towards home automation, smart plugs became more important. It’s considered the easiest way to control small appliances in your smart home even when you are not in the house. Old devices can be controlled using a smart outlet through a remote on your phone or hands-free through a virtual assistant.
There are many brands that offer smart plugs in the market. Here, we are reviewing the basic features of 10 of those plugs.
Best Smart plug review
1. Insteon Remote Control Dual On/Off Outlet Switch
This plug from Insteon is a classic dual-outlet with remote control. It’s considered the most versatile one this collection, it can be controlled from the actual switch or through an Insteon keypad or a mini remote.
This plug comes with a reasonable price, to help automate your home even when you are on a budget.
Through the Insteon hub you can build an ecosystem; to take full charge in-app on your smartphone. Also, it gives you the ability to use hands-free control through voice commands using Alexa or Google Assistant smart speakers.
Insteon Remote Control Dual On/Off Outlet Switch can be used with lamps and other small applications. It provides independent control of upper and lower outlets.
You can use a regular paddle switch or screwless trim plates from Insteon.
|You can control it using Insteon controller, your smartphone, voice commands or using the outlet itself||You need an Insteon hub and an enabled device to be able to use Alexa or Google Assistant|
|Ability to control each outlet separately|
|You don’t need a separate outlet jutting out, because you have the technology built in|
Related Post : Google vs. Amazon: 6 competitive differences
2. Leviton Decora Smart Plug-In Outlet
This plug doesn’t need a gateway and comes with a strong connection to WiFi.
It comes in a wide plugs range that includes a standard smart plug, a mini smart plug, dimmers, plug-in dimmers and a switch.
You only need your smartphone to control this smart plug. Using the Leviton app you can control lights or appliances that use less than 15 watts such as lights, non-dimmable lamps, floor fans and small appliances.
However, you will need an enabled device to control it with voice commands using virtual assistants; Alexa or Google Assistant.
Using IFTTT you can create custom commands like putting the porch light on when motion is detected.
This product line works with Nest products, and you can control your devices from a distance.
It has a home mode and an away mode that is very useful when you are going away for a couple of days.
Its compact design allows you to put 2 smart plugs into a duplex outlet.
|Connects over WiFi with no hub||There have been rare cases of connection dropping|
|Functions on both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency|
|Integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT|
|Integration with a broad range of smart devices and appliances|
3. Wemo Mini Smart Plug
Belkin introduced Wemo Mini Smart Plug as a smaller version of Wemo Insight smart plug, with a design that allows you to put two of these into a single 120v wall outlet.
After plugging it in, download the free Wemo app and connect through your home WiFi network. You can use it with either Alexa or Google Home devices for voice control, without the need for a smart home hub.
You can schedule the plug if you are travelling for a while and want extra protection for your home.
While you can control your electrical devices remotely, you can’t monitor energy through this plug.
|Strong scheduling capability||No energy monitoring capability|
|Excellent integration with other smart device|
|Ability to control using your smartphone or voice commands (hands-free)|
|Because of the in-built thermal cutout, there is no risk of overheating|
4. Samsung Smart Things Smart Outlet
To use this outlet, you will need the SmartThings Home Hub. When you are ready and your outlet is locked into the hub through the Samsung app, you can fully access small appliances wirelessly. This outlet is convenient as well as covering your security concerns.
The outlet can work as a range extender to Zigbee devices.
|Control a wide range of devices with your smartphone||The need for SmartThings Home Hub|
|Extend Zigbee devices range with no extra wiring or work||The app doesn’t always work smoothly|
|Monitor and control your lighting remotely, increasing security and decreasing energy bills|
Related Post : A Competitive edge: Wyze for smart home technology
5. I Devices Smart Switch
The main competitive advantage for this smart plug is the ability to intelligent energy monitoring. Using the iDevices Connected app, you can check on exactly how much energy each appliance is using, to take action when noticing high energy consumption. This could help decrease your electricity bills while reducing your environmental footprint.
The plug is compact, with a hint of purple to add to the simple design.
You can schedule I Devices Smart Switch easily, or create customized Scenes to automate control appliances.
iDevices kit works with HomeKit using iPhone or iPod that works with iOS 8.1 or later. For Android OS users, you will need a 4.3 version or higher.
Some users reported a less than reliable connection sometimes, but that could be because of the home WIFI network.
|Energy monitoring through iDevices Connected app||Reports on poor connection sometimes has occurred|
|Schedule your small devices to create customized scenes, so you can control multiple appliances with a single command|
|Works with any voice assistant; Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri|
6. Wemo Insight Smart Plug with Monitoring
This full size plug from Wemo offers energy monitoring features, so you can monitor your energy consumption at a relatively good price.
You can control the plug using the smart plug in-app or the requisite enabled device for voice commands.
The Wemo Insight plug is compatible with IFTTT cloud service for more functionality. It comes with Away mode for when you are out for a long period, this mode helps to create randomized lighting to help increase house security.
You don’t need a hub for this plug, so you can use it directly out of the box.
In addition, you will get other features such as scheduling, ability to create scenes and compatibility with other smart home devices.
|Monitor connected home electricity consumption||No web browser support|
|Works with higher powered devices||App doesn’t work smoothly sometimes|
|Uses Google Assistant or Alexa for voice control|
|Compatible with Nest devices|
7. TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini
This one is considered one of the smallest plugs out there, with dimensions 1.5 x 2.5 x 1.5 inches.
Works easily through Kasa app, which you can download from App Store and Google Play.
The scheduling feature is available, in addition to the ability to build scenes. On top of these, you can find Away mode, countdown timer and the ability to use Alexa, Google Assistant and even Cortana for voice commands.
Apple HomeKit is not supported, so you can’t use Siri for voice commands.
|Support Alexa, Google Assistant and Cortana for voice commands||Doesn’t support Siri for voice commands|
|Easy to use app||Lack of HomeKit support|
|Compact design||Energy usage metrics are not fully detailed|
Related Post : A Competitive edge: Wyze for smart home technology
8. Amazon Smart Plug with Alexa
This smart plug comes with a down flow; it doesn’t work with 5GHz Wi-Fi networks.
On the other hand, this plug gives you an excellent user experience. It’s compatible with the Alexa app and doesn’t need a hub or third-party equipment. You can set scheduling and routines in-app easily.
It has a simple small design, and comes with a low price.
|Control your appliances with Alexa||Works only on 2.4GHz frequency|
|Easy set up through the Alexa app and home WiFi network||No energy monitoring feature|
|Ability to control and plugged device through your favorite digital assistant|
9. Etekcity Wi-Fi Smart Plug with Monitoring
Like the Amazon Smart Plug with Alexa, this plug doesn’t work with 5GHz Wi-Fi networks.
This plug is versatile and can help you control your devices from heating and AC units to higher power appliances.
This plug doesn’t support Samsung SmartThings nor HomeKit devices.
On the bright side, the plug comes with a full 2-year warranty along with customer support for life.
|Comes packed in a single unit, 2-pack or 4-pack||Lake of HomeKit, IFTTT or SmartThings support|
|Customizable timers and schedules||works only on secured 2.4GHz network|
|Auto night light|
10. TP-Link Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Power Strip with 6 Outlets
This TP-Link plug is a full power strip with no less than 6 outlets. Comes with energy monitoring through your phone, compatible with all voice assistants except Siri.
Has ETL-certified surge protection that protects you from any potentially damaging spikes.
You can control multiple devices through the Kasa app easily without needing a hub.
|High capacity with 6 ground outlets and 3 swift USB ports||works only with 2.4GHz WiFi networks|
|Can use any smart assistant for voice control except Siri (Google Assistant, Alexa and Microsoft Cortana)|
|Full protection from power surges|
Related Post : 6 Reasons Why to buy an Apple Homepod