The best smart home devices make life that little bit easier. But, with so many options and a million different devices that add the word ‘smart’ to their name, it can be confusing to know where to begin. It’s difficult to know both the type of smart home gadgets your home really needs and the brands to choose.
Below we have compiled the definitive list of the very best smart home devices for 2022, including smart speakers, security devices, smart lights and smart light bulbs, smart plugs, and many other smart home devices to help get you more flexibility, and not to mention an impressive home.
As experts in smart home security, we know a thing or two about smart technology. Our own system offers enhanced smart home integration, so it works seamlessly with a number of the devices in this list.
Eufy might not be a name you’ve heard on the smart home market before, but it’s a great one for budget shoppers.
Eufy Video Doorbell 2K
For the price, the Eufy Video Doorbell really knocks other doorbells out of the park. Not only does it perform well, but it’s also reliable, being able to capture detailed footage in a 4:3 ratio. This means you will have a complete picture of whoever is there and not just the head and shoulders of your visitors like many other types of doorbell.
No subscription is required to use the smart home device, and it’s easy to move, for example, if you rent, because it’s completely wireless. It has a 15GB memory which can last as much as two weeks, and the battery can last for months at a time without needing to be charged.
The only downside to the doorbell that we could find is that it isn’t possible to swap over the battery when it does require charging, so you won’t have your doorbell during this time.
- Does not require a subscription for use
- 16 GB memory
- Non-swappable battery.
A UK invention designed by security experts to overcome the failings of traditional wired systems. The system uses intelligent PIR sensors rather than cameras to protect you reliably without having to give up any privacy within your home.
Wireless Alarm System
The true test of any intruder alarm is how smart it is at telling the difference between real danger and a false alarm. Boundary has been designed and is being tested to meet tough UK and European alarm standards (BS EN50131). If you’re looking for a smart alarm system that also offers you the reliability of a ‘graded’ system with a choice of monitoring options, including police response, then this could be the security system for you.
The system is easy to install and comes with a choice of components, including a motion sensor, hub and optional outdoor siren. Boundary connects seamlessly with 100s of other smart devices and works with Amazon Alexa, Google Home Assistant, IFTTT and Samsung SmartThings.
All of Boundary’s wireless alarm system can be used with a free ‘Lite’ plan, or you can unlock additional security features including automated keyholder calling and 24/7 monitoring with police response with a paid monthly security subscription.
Learn more: what’s a graded alarm system?
- Easy to DIY install or option to pro-install
- Add further sensors over time
- No strings subscription cancellation
- Proven reliability
- Monthly subscription required on all but ‘Lite’ monitoring options
August is easily one of the best smart home devices manufacturers currently on the market. If you’re looking to secure your home, consider August’s locks.
August Smart Lock Pro
Not only is this Wi-Fi smart lock easy to install, but it also has a number of key features that make it hard to beat.
First, the installation: Simply add the Wi-Fi smart lock to your deadbolt, and you – or anyone else – can use the old key when required, all while reaping the benefits of a smart lock. Although it’s a chunky piece of kit, it’s also surprisingly sturdy, making it almost impossible to break.
Both Alexa and Google Assistant can be used with it, as well as HomeKit, the only real downside is the price, but for quality this good it is worth the investment.
- Installation takes just minutes
- Choose your voice assistant
- Larger than other models.
Nest is one of the biggest names in the smart home industry. Here are a couple of the brand’s best-selling products that you might want to consider.
Nest Cam (battery)
This doorbell does everything it’s supposed to and more. With a great 4:3 ratio, you will see much more of everything that’s outside. It can be powered by battery alone or with a wire. It also uses face recognition technology to flag familiar faces of family and friends.
It will also tell you whether there’s a package, animal or vehicle close by too.
You do have the option of upgrading to extra storage for a monthly fee, but if three hours of video storage suits you, then there’s absolutely no need.
- Great aesthetics
- Above par quality for this video doorbell
- Auto-detection of people and vehicles
- No additional chime tones to choose from.
The Nest Protect smart smoke alarm will know if something’s in the air, like smoke or carbon monoxide and will sound an alarm if either of these is present within the home. It will also clearly tell you what room the hazard is in, so you won’t ever be unwisely tempted to have to go searching for the source in an unsafe environment.
There is also an LED light on the alarm that will change colour when something is amiss and you need to evacuate.
The only downside to this detector is it will only currently work with a Nest account that’s been converted to Google Assistant. Sadly, Amazon Alexa is not an option.
- Accurately detects a range of hazards
- Easy to link to other smart home appliances e.g., smart lights
- Both spoken and visual alerts
- Google Assistant account required.
This brand doesn’t offer much in the way of smart home systems, but what it does specialise in is garage door openers.
The Chamberlain MyQ is an excellent choice of door opener for your garage, employing a sensor for detection and a smart home hub that connects to Wi-Fi with ease. Using your smartphone, you can easily send a command which will be processed by the hub and directed to the sensor which will open or close your garage door.
If you can’t remember whether the door is left open or closed, you can check it via the app which works with both iOS and Android.
The downside to Chamberlain MyQ is that it will not work on older garage doors, nor is it compatible with Alexa.
- Apple HomeKit and Google Assistant-enabled
- Easy to install
- Requires a subscription to Google Assistant.
Philips were early adopters of smart lighting technology and their product range is extensive for both indoor and outdoor lighting.
Philips Hue White A19 Starter Kit
Smart bulbs are one of the features that many consumers start off with as they begin their smart home journey, and many choose the Philips Hue.
All that’s required is to take out your old bulbs and replace them with these bulbs. Or, you might decide that you want a Hue lamp or light bar; the Philips Hue has everything you could need, such as light strips, floor lamps, and even outdoor lights.
Not only is the Philips Hue fully functional, it is incredibly easy to use.
If you want to control the lights when you are on holiday or at work, you will need a Philips Bridge. This will also work with HomeKit and Alexa/Google Assistant.
- Installation is quick and stress-free
- Use with a range of lights and bulbs
- Homekit, Alexa and Google Assistant-enabled
- Hub needed
- The premium option
Eve is a relative newcomer to the smart home market, but still has some impressive offerings.
Eve Energy Smart Plug
A smart home would not be complete without the help of a smart plug. With Eve smart plugs, you can control any device that is attached to the plug from anywhere with ease.
And with the drastic rise in energy prices, everyone needs to keep an eye on their electricity usage.
That’s where the smart plug really excels; simply plug it in, and the Eve will give you an estimate on how much a particular device is going to set you back. Not only is this ideal if you are trying to save money, but it also will encourage you – and other household members – to become more conscious of the energy you consume.
The Eve smart plug works via Bluetooth, but if you have Apple TV, you can use Thread.
The only downside to this feature is there is no voice assistant – although admittedly, it’s not missed too much because the smart plug is so good.
- Fully compatible with HomeKit
- Helps save on energy bills
- Work with Bluetooth and Thread
- No voice control support
- Rather pricey.
We all know Apple’s range of laptops and smartphones, but did you know the tech giant is also making waves in the smart home sector? Here’s one of their offerings that we love.
The HomePod Mini from Apple employs many of the features of the original smart speaker but embodies these in a smaller – and cheaper – version. In fact, it’s much cheaper than its now-discontinued smart speaker predecessor and is one of the least expensive products Apple has ever released.
The size of a grapefruit, the Homepod mini measures 3.5 inches, but don’t let its petite frame fool you; this smart speaker can really pack a punch when it comes to audio. The HomePod is one of the best smart home devices around, having excellent sound quality so you can play music to your heart’s content. And Siri is available to lend a hand if required.
- Superior sound quality
- Impressive design and feel
- High-quality functionality
- Apple Music required.
What Should You Consider When Purchasing Smart Home Devices?
There’s no denying that smart home devices are capable of making our lives easier. There are some important factors to consider to make a truly informed decision.
One of the most important aspects to consider before purchasing any smart home device is will they be compatible with other devices? Or can you use them in such a way that they will ‘speak’ to each other and work together? For example, Boundary home security uses Z-WaveⓇ to communicate which makes it compatible with 100s of other devices including Amazon Alexa and Google Home, as well as Philips Hue and Sonos using IF This Then That (IFTTT) as a bridge to link your devices. This compatibility allows you to make your home truly smart, as you can set up routines where for instance, if you disarm your alarm in winter, your hall lights automatically go on. Or, if you arm your alarm and go out, your central heating turns down to a preset temperature.
A little planning can give you a smooth-running system, and some excellent life-simplifying hacks.
Using voice commands to activate your smart devices is a popular feature. Deciding on what voice system to use is a big consideration, yet it’s often overlooked. If you only use Alexa-enabled devices, there’s little point in purchasing a device that only allows you to use Siri.
Decide in advance what voice assistant you prefer, and look for signs that any new purchases will seamlessly integrate.
But remember, you don’t need a voice assistant in order to manage many devices. So if you don’t want Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri running your smart home devices in your home, you don’t have to. Many smart devices work perfectly well without the need for voice assistants.
The more smart features your home has, the more you have to manage. Having a functional smart home does not mean that every single device in your home needs to be controlled at the touch of a button.
Consider the benefits overall. Which smart devices have the biggest advantages for you? Perhaps if you work long hours and are away from your home for long periods of time, smart lighting and security should be top of your list? If you’re trying to save money, a digital thermostat or radiator valves could be a way to introduce greater energy efficiency? It all depends on your home, a smart lawn mower might be top of your list, but not your neighbour’s.
Most smart devices have apps, videos and in-tool help boxes that walk you through set-up. However, if you are fitting a larger security, sound or lighting system there are options for pro-install for an affordable fee. This might also be useful if you need expert advice on what products to buy, or how many you will need for your home.
You will also need to think about what type of connection type will suit you. Some smart home devices work with Wi-Fi, others use Z-WaveⓇ, Bluetooth or proprietary software. If Wi-Fi is involved, think about the strength of your signal and where the smart devices will be located. You may want to review your broadband package to ensure you have a good stable connection.
Protect Your Smart Home With Boundary Today
A trustworthy and reliable smart home security system should be at the heart of any decision about making your home smarter and more connected.
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