The Best Smart Plugs in 2019 that Work with Alexa and Google Home.
Everyone wants to cut down on energy costs. One of the easiest ways to do this is by using energy monitoring tools, but another simple solution is to eliminate phantom power. “Phantom power” is the energy consumed by devices, even if they are not used directly, such as to power LED displays.
The only way to turn off phantom power is by turning off the electricity to that device, and the easiest way to do this without unplugging the device when you’re done is to use a smart plug.
However, smart plugs can be confusing for even the most tech-savvy person. To help you decide which of these plugs is right for you, we’ve narrowed down the top five smart plugs you can buy right now in February 2019.
1. Belkin WeMo Insight (Amazon
Belkin is no stranger to smart home technology, but the WeMo Insight smart socket is one of their most popular devices. WeMo Insight supports Amazon Alexa and IFTTT, and has Android and iOS apps.
Belkin went to great lengths to create this model and provided what few other smart plugs do: energy monitoring software. While not as reliable as a whole house monitoring system, you can track how much power a device connected to your WeMo Insight is consuming on a daily and hourly basis.
The price per fork is a bit high at $ 38.39. There is no web support, so you cannot access and control the plug over the internet, and the phone app can be a little tricky to use at times. Regardless, energy monitoring makes it one of the most preferred options on the market, especially for people who are serious about cutting utility costs.
2. iDevices Switch (Amazon
IDevices Switch has one strong point that puts it at the top of our list: it works with Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Home. It also supports monitoring of power consumption and allows you to schedule specific periods of operation of the device connected to the outlet.
The downside is not the most compact fork design. The outlet redirects the plug to the side, which can be a little inconvenient (or not) depending on the device. While a second slot in a wall outlet is unlikely, the iDevices Switch may not fit into a power strip. It’s cheaper than the Belkin WeMo Insight at $ 29.95.
3. TP-Link Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Mini Plug (Amazon
TP-Link is another well-known name in the technology world. In addition to its long history of building routers, the company also makes some of the most popular smart plugs available today.
The Kasa lineup has a lot to offer, especially with this mini-fork. Not only is it compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT, and even Microsoft Cortana, but it also provides energy monitoring and reporting for everything connected to it.
The Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Mini Plug has a slim and narrow design that allows it to be placed in places that other smart plugs cannot reach, and since it does not redirect the plug, you can easily insert it into an extension cord. However, it doesn’t support Apple HomeKit. Kasa costs $ 21.99 and is one of the cheapest options on this list.
4. iClever Smart Plug (Amazon
The iClever smart plug is not a revolutionary addition to the market, but it does everything a smart plug should do, and at a lower cost than anything else. The device works with Amazon Alexa, Google Home and IFTTT and gives you the ability to turn the plugin on and off based on different conditions.
The downside is that it doesn’t work with Apple HomeKit and doesn’t have power controls, but when you get two plugs for just $ 27.99 it’s hard to find fault with.
5. iSmart iSP100 Outdoor SmartPlug (Amazon
The ISmart iSP100 is the only outlet that has earned a spot on this list, not just for indoor use, but if you want an easy way to control your holiday fire, the outdoor smart socket is a simple option. ISmart works with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and Google Home. It also has a plug long enough to be easily plugged into a covered outlet.
The downside is that it doesn’t support energy monitoring or IFTT compatibility. While it would be nice to keep track of how much power your award-winning Christmas light display is using, it doesn’t have to.
Benefits of the smart plug
Smart plugs don’t just let you control them with your voice; they can turn even a “dumb” device into a connected Wi-Fi controlled device. They also provide peace of mind.
If you have a small, sometimes cold office (as the author of this article), then heaters become a necessity in winter. And if you ever forget whether you turned it off or not, a smart plug makes it easy to press a button on your phone and ensure that the heater isn’t working.
The ability to connect devices to your home that you don’t normally plug into your home makes smart plugs a welcome addition to any home.
While some plugs take up more space than is strictly necessary, those with a thinner profile make it easy to control your home by saying, “Ok Google, turn on your living room lamp.” With a smart plug, you will take your antique lamp from a 1950s heirloom into 2019.