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The smart home you want may not be the smart home you need (yet)

The connected home we want is one which anticipated our needs, almost a digital butler. If we’re cold, the thermostat would know. Angry? Maybe the stereo plays the music it knows calms us down. A home security system that recognizes the same face lurking a few times in a week, then notifies you about a potential burglary.

It all sounds like something out of a terrible Michael Bay Summer Sci-Fi movie where people wear Nike shoes we’ve only dreamed of. While we groan at the one-liners, we marvel at the concept of such a home. As the concept becomes reality, missteps have proven it may be the home we want, but not the home we deserve.

Nest’s recent snafu with their Protect smoke alarms that just didn’t work proved that overreaching was perhaps the order of the day. A simple wave to dismiss a fire alarm sounds calming and contextual, but proved potentially disastrous. A bug in the system meant it may not work at all in certain life threatening scenarios.

The Nest thermostat has been met with the same type of furrowed brow response. While not yanked from store shelves like its stablemate (which has yet to return), many question the real aim and use of the expensive device. It might look like something Michael Bay would dream up, but what does it do for $250? Many wonder.

As Honeywell enters the connected home space with the Lyric, their new thermostat promises to bring a bit of civility to home automation. A thermostat, an app, and temperature control. Geofencing brings the contextual awareness, and the device is likely going to be part of Apple’s HomeKit. We get a smart thermostat that actually reacts, an important small step forward.

There are several issues to consider, though. As Nest’s thermostat proved, when you start offering up smarter choices, people question them. Nest can help save money, and thousands of happy users will attest to that. It also over steps bounds we’re not comfortable with. Programming itself, the Nest thermostat absconds with our sense of control; it automates, which is scary to some maybe most). Helpful, sure, but a step too far for many home owners.

Honeywell, leaning on their brand recognition and current spot in most homes, will attempt to bridge a gap. They, among others, want to give us the connected home we need — one we control, but also extend the leash on as desired. The Honeywell thermostat, for instance, can be automated to turn off and on via geofencing. It doesn’t monitor us creepily, it just helps if we want it to. Their algorithm also promises to comfort us in a distinct way, appreciating environmental factors that may not make 68 degrees feel like 68 degrees.

Nest is our future, that much is nearly affirmed. Some day, we’ll have a home that learns in a very unique way, and can offer up intrinsic suggestions based on things we’re not even aware of. The digital butler will tend to our whims, and anticipate our needs appropriately. Until that smart home is ready, we’d be smart to throttle back a touch and accept the baby steps that will get us there.

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Why You Should Need To Next Generation Smart Home Gadgets

Which were the most common smart house gadgets in 2023? Bright speakers and smart home safety apparatus were the hottest.

Do intelligent house gadgets replace your present apparatus? Occasionally, yes. But several clever devices also work together with your old technician.

Which are the greatest new smart house gadgets in 2023? Continue reading if you want to see our trailer selections, and watch the most recent arrivals in our smart house collection.

Which were the most common smart house gadgets in 2023? Bright speakers and smart home safety apparatus were the hottest.

In 2023, lots of new devices revealed the genuine value of smart house technology. However, the greatest, most exciting developments are to come. Following is a peek at the next-gen smart house gadgets which are very likely to take off at the brand new year.

June Oven Intelligent Countertop Oven

Smart house technology is coming in the kitchen, also. June is a smart oven which could cook and recognize 65 kinds of meals with no human input. Additionally, it preheats three times quicker than regular ovens.

Price: $599 USD, pre-order

SiB Programmable Smart Button

Voice controller is great once you’re in range of your speaker. However, with the SiB button, then it is possible to activate many different smart devices using a fast tap.

Cost: $5 USD

Sunflower Drone Security System

The next generation of safety systems will require a more active part in protecting your property. Sunflower picks up motion with inactive detectors and launches a smart drone to explore.

Cost: TBA

Also read:

Top 5 Automation Tools to Streamline Workflows for Busy IT Teams

Arlo Pro 2 Smart HD Security Camera by NETGEAR

In case your house security budget does not extend to drones, NETGEAR delivers a fantastic choice. Arlo Guru 2 catches crisp HD footage from almost any weather and even after dark, using built-in Wi-Fi for streaming.

Cost: $169.90

Smarter 3rd Gen iKettle Smart Electric Kettle

USD You can schedule it using the companion program, control it using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, or automate it using IFTTT.

Cost: $149.99 USD

Wink Lookout Smart Home Security Suite

Another very wise alternative is Wink Lookout. This security suite comprises a motion sensor and two door detectors to detect risks, and it may send alarms to your mobile phone.

Cost: $199 USD

VARRAM Pet Fitness Robot

Petcare will be a significant fad in 2023. VARRAM is an early example — this wise robot encourages your pet to run about and play with chase by doling out occasional treats.

Cost: $99 USD

Bose Home Speaker 500 Alexa-Powered Smart Speaker

Up to now, most clever speakers have provided underwhelming sound. But that varies with the entrance of Bose. This Alexa-powered monster delivers epic stereo audio on demand.

Cost: $399.95 USD

FROLIC Studio Smartians Cloud-Connected Smart Actuators

Another important trend in 2023 is the automation of”dumb” devices. The Smartians are little actuators that may envision bodily switches when they’re triggered through the company program or from IFTTT.

Cost: TBA

Next-gen smart house gadgets for your New Year

With CES 2023 only days away, we are really eager to find out what smart house technology arrives at the New Year.

What type of smart house technician would you prefer to see? tell us!

The Best Smart Home Technology

If you’re already thinking about setting up your smart home, you should familiarize yourself with the smart home systems that are currently available on the market, weigh the pros and cons, and then choose the one that’s right for you.

Apple, Google, and Amazon are the main leaders in the field of smart homes: their voice assistants are not only a convenient way to order connected smart home devices but also help to bring their work to automatics. Of course, Control4 and Xiaomi’s systems are already making a good name for themselves on the market, and while they don’t reach the technological mastodons like Apple or Google, they’re still the best on the market.

Buying smart home devices

If you’re tired of dealing with standard household issues, you can install a smart home system that does everything for you. It will take into account all your wishes, provide security, and organize a comfortable temperature in the room with an air conditioner. Do not forget that such technological installations in the smart home needs quality air conditioner servicing. In addition, smart home controls doors, gates, electrical appliances, air conditioning, and ventilation systems.

The possibilities are endless. With its help, you do not have to think about energy accounting – it will all be carried out automatically with the provision of detailed statistics. It is convenient that to save energy, Smart House will turn off devices or transfer them to energy-saving mode before you come. You can save on the purchase and installation of the system by choosing the basic models. Later you can expand the capabilities of the system by adding new components.

Apple HomeKit

The HomeKit platform is a software framework that has been built right into Apple devices. If you use this system to control your smart home on your iPhone, you don’t need anything more than a single app with a perfect design and intuitive interface.

Thanks to Apple’s clever ecosystem, you can set up home control through the Home app on iOS, iPadOS, or macOS. The whole thing works perfectly with Siri. So you can change the temperature, adjust the lights, or entire triggering algorithms just on your iPhone.

Amazon Alexa

The Amazon Alexa digital assistant appeared on the original Amazon Echo smart speaker in 2014 and has since spread to many speakers and other smart devices. Amazon’s smart home system itself only includes speakers that can control other companies’ smart devices. Connecting a couple or three devices into a system isn’t too difficult, but when it comes to a fully smart home, you’ll need quite a bit of time to set everything up.

Control4

You may never have heard of this smart home system. Control4 doesn’t have its voice assistant, which Google, Apple, Amazon, and even Xiaomi do. However, the company’s products are mostly lighting, smart locks, home security systems, garage doors, wireless audio, and more.

Reasons to install a Smart Home system

If you’re still in doubt about whether to install this system, consider the benefits it provides:

Time savings.

Remote access to multimedia devices. 

Restricted access to electrical outlets, protecting children from trouble.

Round-the-clock monitoring of certain items in the home.

Economic power management reduces electricity and heating costs.

Remote control and monitoring via smartphone, laptop, or tablet.

The Best Smart Home Gyms Of 2023

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Written By Nick Hilden

Published Mar 20, 2023 9:00 AM

Increasingly, home gyms ain’t like the setup your grandpa used. Modern equipment isn’t just about assembling an exercise circuit; it’s connected by all kinds of high-performance circuitry. It’s providing you with access to digital tools and training that are capable of refining your workout routine and truly pushing it to the next level. Below you’ll find our picks for the best smart home gyms from various realms—from treadmills to stationary bikes, plus much more. Depending on your fitness goals, any of these will deliver an outstanding experience. Pair two together, however—say by mixing a cardio machine with a weightlifting or full-body workout machine—and you’ll essentially bring home a complete gym that can deliver you everything from remote trainers to detailed metrics. To that end, here’s equipment for the best smart home gyms so that you can get your state-of-the-art sweat on.

How we chose equipment for the best smart home gyms

The options for working out at home are better than ever. Whether you prefer sparring, running, yoga, rowing, or putting in miles on the treadmill, the best smart home gyms include equipment designed with virtual trainers and tracking to help you maximize your sweat sessions. For our list, we considered all types of activities and accessories so you can achieve the most interactive experience as you maximize your investment and output.

The best smart home gyms: Reviews & Recommendations

These days home workout equipment is getting smart. Sure, the classic versions of fitness equipment will still get the job done. Still, the best smart home gym equipment provides innovative opportunities to maximize your fitness progress and get more results in minimal time. It’s also really cool. Here are our top picks across multiple categories.

Best smart home treadmill: NordicTrack T Series

Specs

Dimensions: ‎78.5 inches L x 35.5 inches W x 59 inches H

Power: Corded

Features: Interactive touchscreen, 12% incline

Pros

Quiet, cushioned, smooth motion for a pleasant, safe experience

Folds easily to save space

Immersive touchscreen with a wide range of program options

Cons

Must purchase a monthly membership for program access

NordicTrack has been the standard-bearer for treadmills for decades, and that’s still the case. The T Series offers pretty much everything you could want from a connected treadmill, and it does so at a surprisingly affordable price. 

Available in a range of specific model packages to suit a variety of accessories needs, the most basic option provides a solid all-around treadmill with a 5-inch screen and a compact 20-inch by 50-inch deck for just shy of $700, while the top-tier includes an immersive 14-inch screen and an expansive 20-inch by 60-inch deck—and there are several other options in between. Whatever package you choose, it boasts automatic incline and speed adjustments to suit your workout program. The deck itself provides a smooth, cushioned running surface, while the motor is quiet and self-cooling. The deck can also fold to save space.

The iFIT program offers a wide range of live streams, on-demand workouts, and studio classes, and it comes with a 30-day free membership. You will have to purchase a membership after that, though the treadmill provides all its basic functions without access to classes and programs. It is recommended that you buy the expert assembly package for a hundred bucks because putting the thing together is no small task.

Best smart home bike: Peloton

Specs

Dimensions: 59 inches D x 23 inches W x 53 inches H

Power: Corded electric

Features: Touchscreen, camera, stereo speaker system

Pros

Sturdy, comfortable equipment provides an enjoyable experience 

Superior program selection for quality workouts 

Wide, immersive screen makes location courses a pleasure

Cons

Must purchase a monthly membership for program access

There are a lot of stationary bikes on the market, and there are a few solid smart bike options, but there’s only one Peloton. It’s become so synonymous with stationary bikes that it’s almost become cliche, but the thing is, they’re really, really high quality. 

First of all, the overall craftsmanship is outstanding. There are no worries about rocking back and forth like with many other bikes—Pelotons stand rock solid. Their seats are comfortable enough for long classes, the setup can be easily adjusted to suit your body size, and the pedal action is smooth. It also has a relatively compact footprint, making it a decent option for small spaces. 

The Peloton programs are fantastic. Viewed via an expansive touchscreen, membership provides access to thousands of wide-ranging classes, games, location courses, and more. It even offers fitness and wellness programs beyond cycling, such as yoga, strength training, boxing, and so on. You do need a membership to get the most out of it, however. Without one, the equipment will still function as a basic stationary bike, but the classes vastly boost the experience.

Best for strength training: Tempo Studio

Specs

Dimensions: 72 inches H x 26 inches W x 16 inches D

Power: Corded electric

Features: AI creates digital personal trainer, range of packages

Pros

Expansive screen delivers quality programming and real-time form adjustments

Free weights, unlike most dubious home cable weight setups

All-in-one setup boasting all the essentials

Cons

Not for really heavy lifters

There’s no shortage of smart weightlifting options on the market, but Tempo Studio stands out because it provides real-time form adjustments. While most connected strength trainers are essentially videos you follow, Tempo boasts an AI-driven element that analyzes your form and provides adjustment recommendations. It’s essentially a digital personal trainer. 

Another difference: While many similar products come with cheap feeling gear, the weights and bars included with Tempo offer gym-level quality. Tempo Studio comes with three packages. Starter is limited to the screen and a pair of dumbbells. Plus, steps up to include a barbell and bench. Pro goes full package, with a folding bench, squat rack, kettlebell setup, and 215 pounds of weights. Most of the gear stores nicely in the screen platform while the benches fold flat, so the whole thing has a small footprint and eats up very little space. 

Best budget: MAXPRO Fitness Cable Home Gym

Specs

Weight: Less than 9 pounds 

Power: Battery-powered

Features: Digital coaching for weightlifting, sensors track your stats

Pros

(Relatively) affordable package option

Full-body workout with minimal equipment

Extremely space efficient

Cons

Doesn’t quite compare to a typical gym experience

Some users report difficulty achieving coordinated movements

There aren’t a lot of affordable smart home gym setups on the market, at least not ones emphasizing strength training. MAXPRO, however, offers a solid full-body workout fused with digital coaching for significantly less than the competition. 

The MAXPRO achieves this via a cable pulley system capable of producing between 5 and 300 pounds of resistance. The basic package comes with a pulley base that can be attached to a bench, door, or other fixed point, and then you use handles and ankle straps to exercise various muscle groups. Sensors monitor your workout, collect data to monitor your progress, and provide coaching suggestions. The whole setup weighs less than nine pounds and takes up almost no room, so it’s easy to store or pack along while traveling. 

Some users report that it does take some getting used to and that it can be difficult to achieve coordinated movements between both sides of your body. But while it’s not a total replacement for a real gym, it does allow you to bring home a solid workout.

Best connected boxing trainer: FightCamp

Specs

Dimensions: 67 inches H x 24 inches W

Power: N/A

Features: Punching bag, punch trackers, range of classes

Pros

Fun fusion of cardio and strength training

Classes are comprehensive and well instructed

Equipment is of better quality than competitors

Cons

Heavy hitters might experience some punching bag creep

When it comes to home boxing trainers, nothing beats FightCamp, period. Not only does it offer a fun and effective fusion of cardio and strength training, but the gear looks great in your living space while taking up very little room.

FightCamp uses a set of punch trackers to collect data on your punching performance, which it gathers as you train to different fighting programs designed to teach basics, footwork, punching styles, and even kickboxing. You then use the data to improve speed and beat your own performance—or compete with other users—which delivers surprisingly solid results in terms of performance improvement. 

The equipment—which includes gloves, punch trackers, and a free-standing bag—is of much better quality than other similar products. The classes are well delivered, and the experience is flat-out fun. The really heavy hitters out there might find that the punching bag creeps a bit if the base is filled with water rather than sand, but other than that, there are few faults with the system. It also comes in two fairly affordable package sizes, which makes it a great option if you’re looking for fitness gifts.

Best connected rower: Hydrow Wave Rowing Machine

Specs

Dimensions: 80 inches D x 19 inches W x 43 inches H

Power: Corded electric

Features: Touchscreen, access to more than 4,000 classes with membership

Pros

Great full body, low impact cardio, and strength workout

Sturdy, stable craftsmanship for comfort and durability 

Enjoyable, effective workout programs

Easy to assemble and store

Cons

Expensive

Subscription required to track basic data

Rowers can provide an outstanding combination of cardio and strength exercise, but models intended for home use are often wobbly and unstable. Not so with the Hydrow Rower, which is as stable and sturdy as they come, delivering a solid combination of cardio and strength training that is low impact on your joints. 

The Hydrow Rower offers thousands of workout programs to choose from to suit any fitness goal, all of which are followed via an expansive 16-inch touchscreen. The screen is bright and colorful, making the location programs that allow you to row digitally through water sites around the world visually pop. It’s also easy to assemble and folds for convenient storage. 

Memberships are offered in two package tiers, with the one negative being that you must purchase a membership to track even the most basic of data like distance, calories burned, and so on. But if you’re in it for the classes anyways, this rower is unsurpassed.

Best smart mirror for yoga: Mirror

Specs

Dimensions: 56 inches H x 1.4 inches D

Power: Corded

Features: Two-way camera, access to more than 10,000 classes with membership, elegant design

Pros

Outstanding screen quality bolsters the experience

Looks great in your living space

Offers workout programs for every fitness goal

Two-way camera for real personal training

Cons

Program navigation could be improved

You don’t need pro installation, but you should get it

If you’re the type of person who thrives in a fitness class environment, Mirror is what you’re looking for. Whether you’re into yoga, barre, boxing, strength training, dance, meditation, tai chi, or one of the hundreds of other options, it delivers via a state-of-the-art, well, mirror that looks as great as it functions. 

Mirror provides a slew of pre-recorded or live-streamed classes on-demand, and you can even use its two-way camera to get personal training from a real person. Programs can suit any fitness level, and the audio/visual quality is outstanding. 

A few things to note: you must pay for a monthly membership to use Mirror, and if you go with personal training, you pay a trainer fee on top of that. And when mounting it on the wall, you should have the installation team handle it for you, though there is a stand mount option if you want to avoid having holes drilled in your wall.

Best fitness watch: Garmin Venu 2 Plus

Specs

Dimensions: 1.3-inch screen

Power: Lithium polymer battery (included) 

Features: ECG, GPS, bright AMOLED display

Pros

Wide variety of fitness activity tracking options

Full range of smartwatch functions for managing calls, emails, notifications, etc.

Extremely long battery life

Looks great by every metric

Cons

Wireless charging would be nice

A solid fitness tracker is a great tool for supporting home fitness—or fitness in any context really. And while we’ve got recommendations for the best Fitbits, when it comes to wearing a fitness watch that will truly track any and all activities, the Garmin Venu 2 Plus is as good as they get. 

The Venu 2 Plus tracks almost every fitness activity imaginable, even swimming. And while tracking fitness metrics should sometimes be taken somewhat with a grain of salt—so far, there is no single device that tracks everything with total accuracy—the Garmin has been pretty extensively tested and proven to track with reasonable accuracy factors like calories burned, heart rate, SpO2 (oxygen level), skin temperature, stress, sleep, and more. Its GPS tracking for running and hiking is as accurate as can be. And it responds well as you progress through different stages of an interval training session. 

On top of all that, it delivers a pretty comprehensive range of smartwatch functions, like receiving calls and notifications, listening to and controlling music, accessing your phone’s voice assistant, and a lot more. And it looks great, with a bright face that can be endlessly customized. For these and other reasons, Garmin definitely ranks highly among our best Apple Watch alternatives.

The bottom line is that few accessories can support your fitness routine in as many ways, big and small.

What to consider when choosing gear for the best smart home gyms

As you’ve probably realized while reading our recommendations, home fitness equipment comes in an extremely wide range of formats, meaning there are many factors to consider when selecting the right one for you. Here are some of the most important things to keep in mind.

Your fitness goals

What are you looking to get out of your fitness routine? Cardio? Strength training? Classes? Or individual workouts? Some mix of them all? You need to choose the equipment or combination of equipment that will best address your individual goals. A treadmill won’t do much for your fitness training, for example, and a strength trainer isn’t likely your best option for cardio.

Living space requirements

A home gym can be demanding in terms of your living space. Some products require more space than others, but you want something that will look good in your home long after you buy it. Choose a piece that will have a reasonable footprint relative to the available room and suit your aesthetic tastes.

Enjoyment

One of the basic tenets of fitness is that if you can’t enjoy an activity, you won’t stick to it. Choose a home gym you’ll have fun using in the long run. Some people love the repetition of lifting weights, while others need the variety and engagement of classes. Consider what’s right for your personality.

FAQs Q: Is smart home gym equipment better than regular equipment?

That depends on you more than the equipment. For some people, old-school luddite gear will get the job done fine. But many beginners often prefer to have digital guidance, and even experienced fitness buffs can benefit from having some outside expertise. Data tracking can also be invaluable for maximizing the effectiveness of your efforts.

Q: Do all smart home gyms require a subscription?

In most cases, the smart home gym experience will be vastly expanded with a subscription. Many machines will allow you to use and track basic functions and data without it, but a key benefit to getting a piece of smart gear in the first place is that you can access the many programs and tools it offers.

Q: Can I get a good workout with a smart home gym?

That depends on the gym and on how dedicated you are to using it. Each product we’ve suggested above is 100% capable of providing an outstanding workout—if you’re willing to put in the time and effort necessary.

Q: What makes a piece of fitness equipment “smart”?

It’s kind of a vague term, but typically speaking, if a piece of equipment can be connected to the internet to access classes, live training, or other virtual fitness tools, it can wear the “smart” moniker.

Q: What do I need to have in my home before purchasing a smart gym system?

Generally speaking, just the space a particular piece of equipment requires and a somewhat stable internet connection (perhaps making it a great time to consider upgrading your Wi-Fi router). Some products, like Mirror, will ideally require some wall space, but even that can use a stand mount if necessary.

Q: Is a smart home gym worth it?

That’s up to you. No equipment’s “smart” enough to force you to use it. You have to do that yourself. But assuming that you’re putting in the time and effort, smart gyms can offer a range of benefits to help you learn a new fitness routine or improve upon an existing one.

Final thoughts on the best smart home gyms

Whatever your favorite way to work out, smart equipment can enhance the experience. Whether it’s letting you train with rowers from beautiful spots around the world or setting up a sparring session or interactive yoga session, the best smart home gym equipment can help you track your progress, reach your goals, and have fun while you’re doing it.

Why trust us

Popular Science has spent 150 years helping readers learn more about technology and the products they buy, while writer Nick Hilden is a dedicated gym rat and all-around fitness enthusiast. In addition to reviewing products and writing about fitness for Popular Science, he has done the same for Men’s Health, Runner’s World, the Los Angeles Times, the Manual, and more.

Best Prime Day 2023 Smart Home Deals

Last Updated on July 22, 2023

After two years, July welcomes the return of Prime Day, and smart home deals are right on our watch list. The discount event often throws up useful home tech offers worth picking up. And we’ll be keeping our eyes open for bundles, savings and any downright steals to help you find the best prices this side of Black Friday.

Amazon’s Blink range features heavily this Prime Day

Prime Day Smart Home deals

A range of Amazon’s own smart home devices – and selected other products – feature in the Prime Day deals. We’ve highlighted our pick of the best offers below. All of which should be available, stock dependent, until the end of Wednesday, July 13th.

Amazon US

Up to 40% off Govee LED light strips – shop here

Up to $199 off Blink Smart Home Security Camera kits – here

Up to 60% off Blink Outdoor Cam Kit bundles with Echo Show 5 (2nd Gen) – here

Up to 50% off Blink floodlight camera bundles – here

Up to 51% off Ring Cameras and Bundles – here

NETGEAR 4-Stream WiFi 6 Router (R6700AX) – Save $56.50

Amazon CA

Up to 54% off Blink Smart Home Security Cameras – here

Up to 50% off Blink smart home doorbells bundles – here

Up to 31% off Ring Smart Home Cameras – here

Up to 37% off Ring Doorbells and bundles – here

TP-Link AX3000 WiFi 6 Smart WiFi Router – Save $59 CAD

Amazon UK

Up to 41% off Govee LED light strips – shop here

Up to 47% off selected routers – here

When is Amazon Prime Day?

This year Prime Day returns to July and will run across July 12th and 13th. So it’s back to its usual time in the year, having previously shifted to October and then June because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

You’ll want to make sure you’re a Prime Day member to be able to pick up any smart home deals you do see. But if you’re not yet signed up, you can pick up a 30-day free trial:

What smart home deals will be available on Prime Day?

For Prime Day 2023 expect various smart home products, from some of the major manufacturers in this category. So that means TP-Link, ASUS, and Netgear for networking options, with Ring and Yale being the main players for your home security needs.

Of course, Google offers a range of smart home products, some of which may feature. These include cameras, thermostats, speakers, and lights. Amazon has its own smart home products too. For lighting, Philips will likely be featured among deals on smart bulbs.

In terms of what to expect for discount percentages, based on previous Prime Days, we think that you should be able to secure yourself between 5 and 30% savings.

Is Amazon Prime Day a good time to get Smart Home Deals?

We’d say so. Given the potential discounts available Prime Day smart home shopping makes sense. It’s probably one of the best opportunities to get discounts on devices before Black Friday. And, in theory, it means you can kit out your house for less.

You’ll certainly want to ensure that the deals are good before you part with your money, but we’ll help with that. We’ll give our honest opinion on all smart home and Prime Day deals we come across.

More best Prime Day Deals in 2023

We’ll be covering a range of categories for top deals this Prime Day. Keep an eye on our Best Prime Day deals page, but don’t forget the category-specific pages below.

How To Use Smart Devices To Protect Your Home

With the holiday season upon us, many people will be away from home for long periods of time. Consequently, crime takes a turn for the worse at this time of year—for all the goodwill in the air, thieves know that an empty home is an easy target. 

But what if the home didn’t appear to be empty? Smart home technology makes it possible to give the appearance of presence in the home, even if you’re a couple of flights away.

Table of Contents

No security system is foolproof, but thieves want easy targets. If you make your home too difficult to easily rob, most would-be burglars will go somewhere else. We’re not going to talk about security cameras here as we’ve covered that before and that’s an obvious first-choice deterrent.

This article will walk you through how to safeguard your home for the holidays. We previously covered how you can protect your smart home devices from hackers, but here we’re going to talk about using smart devices to protect your home.

Move The Blinds & Shades As Normal

Smart blinds enable you to open and close the blinds from afar. Opening them in the day and closing them in the evening makes it feel like someone is at home. Drawing the blinds can hide any valuables inside your home, but if they are closed for multiple days in a row, it’s a sure-fire sign that you’re away. 

If you open your blinds however, make sure any tempting items are hidden from view. For example, don’t leave expensive game consoles in plain sight or keep jewelry on the windowsill. You can program smart blinds to open and close at set times of day, or you can do it yourself from your phone.

Use a Smart Thermostat

Protecting your home while you’re away isn’t just about keeping unwanted elements out—it’s also about keeping the items inside your home safe. 

Many people drop their thermostat to much lower temperatures while they’re away during the winter to conserve energy, but if it gets too cold it might damage temperature-sensitive items in the home. You also burn a lot of energy bringing your home back to its normal temperature when you return.

A better alternative is to use a smart thermostat and place it on its “eco” mode. This mode takes weather data from the internet and sets the temperature based on the temperature outside. It will prevent your home from getting too cold (and keep you from an uncomfortable return from your travels) while simultaneously keeping your utility bill under control.

Set Outdoor Lights To a Normal Schedule – But Keep Indoor Lights Random

Outdoor lights should be turned off during the day and turned on at night. A deviation in this pattern, like leaving the lights on all the time, signals that no one is home. 

If you have a smart switch, you can set it to an “Away” mode that causes it to turn on and off at random. If you keep a lamp plugged in, the light will power on and off as though someone is inside the home. Smart bulbs can do something similar. 

It’s also a good idea to plug your TV into a smart switch so you can turn it on and off.

Install a Security System

One of the primary benefits of a smart home is how easy it is to link a smart security system to it. Security systems offer a lot of benefits, such as live video feeds of your home, motion detectors, sirens, and more. 

These devices alone are often enough to deter would-be thieves, especially if they are visible from the outside. If someone sets off the siren in the home, it will draw more attention than most burglars want. 

However, you can link a smart home system to a home security system for even more effect. If someone sets off the motion sensors, the lights inside the home can come on. You could make the lights flash and strobe. It gives you the ability to take a security system to the next level.

Use a Smart Lock To Monitor Your Door

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