Smart-Home Gadgets Worth the Money
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Smart Home Products That Are Actually Worth the Money

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Amazon Astro
Amazon

Home Is Where the Tech Is

Amazon unveiled its "helpful, capable robot for your home" named Astro toward the end of 2021, charging a cool $1,000. If you think that sounds steep for what seems to amount to Alexa on wheels, we agree — but there are plenty of other smart-home gadgets that are actually are worth the splurge. We've rounded up a bunch of tried-and-true smart-home products that earn reviewers' raves for making their lives easier.


Prices and availability are subject to change.


Related: Tech Products That Will Make Your Life Easier

Wemo Mini Smart Plug
Amazon

Wemo Mini Smart Plug

$24 from Amazon

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Want to turn on lights or appliances from your phone? It's as simple as plugging them into this sleek Wemo plug. You can schedule them remotely or even randomize lights to make it look like you're home when you're actually sipping margaritas on the beach. With Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, you can control Wemo with your voice, too.


Related: Going-Out-of-Town Checklist to Keep Your Home Secure

Nest Protect
Amazon

Google Nest Protect

$118 from Amazon

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The Nest Protect does double duty as a smoke detector and carbon monoxide alarm. Spoken alerts and push notifications leave no doubt about whether something's wrong, and in case of a false alarm, you can easily hush it with your phone. It even tests itself automatically every month.


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Ring Video Doorbell 2
Amazon

Ring Video Doorbell 3

$180 from Amazon 

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You'll never have to deal with annoying solicitors again with the Ring Video Doorbell. Use your phone to see, hear, and speak to anyone who's at the door. Motion-detection alerts will tell you whether someone's there even if they don't ring the bell.


Related: Ways to Upgrade Your Home That Will Save Money 


Zircon Wi-Fi Leak Alert Water Detector
Amazon

Flume 2 Smart Water Monitor and Leak Detector

$149 from Amazon

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Whether you have a second-floor washer, a flood-prone basement, or an aging water heater, this leak detector can alert your phone immediately if it detects even a tiny bit of moisture. It also tells you exactly how much water you’re using, as well as where and when you’re using it, so you can find ways to cut back and save on utility bills.


Related: Lies Plumbers Tell to Drain Your Wallet

myQ Smart Garage Control
Chamberlain Group

Chamberlain MyQ Smart Garage Hub

$28 from Amazon 

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You know that sinking feeling when you can't remember whether you closed the garage door? Banish it forever with the Chamberlain MyQ Smart Garage Hub. Control access remotely with your smartphone, know when someone comes or goes, or get alerts if your garage door is left open for a certain amount of time.


Ecovacs Deebot T8 Robotic Vacuum and Mop
Amazon
Blink Mini Indoor Security Camera
Amazon
Whirlpool Smart Slide-In Electric Range
Home Depot

Whirlpool Smart Slide-In Electric Range

$1,889 from Home Depot

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Scan a frozen-food barcode and your oven will know exactly what to do — what a world. You can also control the oven from your phone, using a remote-start feature to preheat even if you aren’t home. 


Cielo Breez Air Conditioner Controller
Amazon

Cielo Breez Air Conditioner Controller

$73 from Amazon

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If you rely on a window air conditioner, ductless mini-split, or other remote-based A/C to stay cool, the Cielo Breeze will let you control it from anywhere with your phone. It can even note your location and turn on the A/C before you arrive — no more coming home to a stuffy apartment or bedroom.

Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker
Amazon
Sonos One Smart Speakers
Walmart

Sonos One Smart Speakers

$479 from Walmart for 2

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These compact plug-and-play speakers use Wi-Fi to stream music in any room of your home. Different units can be paired for bigger sound, too. But the One's biggest claim to fame is that it has Alexa built in, letting you control the speaker and any Alexa-enabled smart-home devices with simple voice commands.


Rachio 3 Sprinkler Controller
Amazon

Rachio 3 Sprinkler Controller

$190 from Amazon

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A big storm is coming, but does your irrigation system know that? Save water and money with this forecast-connected controller, which is smart enough to adjust sprinkler operation based on the weather. Build schedules, set up custom zones, and control everything from your phone or with your voice using Alexa or Google Assistant.


Related: Little Home Improvement Projects That Make a Big Impact

Ecobee Smart Thermostat
Amazon

Ecobee Smart Thermostat

$200 from Amazon

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A smart thermostat not only saves energy; it saves money on monthly power bills, so consider this an investment that will pay for itself even more quickly when bought at a discount. The included room sensor measures occupancy and room temperature in an especially important spot, and you can control the thermostat from anywhere using a phone or Alexa. 


Related: Things to Make Life Better and Save Money While Staying at Home


Tile Stickers
Amazon

Tile Stickers

$55 from Amazon (4 ct.)

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There's nothing more frustrating than frantic, last-minute searches for keys, wallets, or phones. Tile Stickers are an easy way to eliminate the problem. Attach them to important items, then launch the Tile app to ring your things. Tile Stickers can even ring your phone when it's set on silent mode.


Apple AirTag
Target

Apple AirTags

$30 from Target

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Know someone who's always losing their keys or wallet or other personal belongings? A couple of these AirTags would make a great stocking stuffer for anyone who already owns an iPhone or other Apple products and keep the lost belongings to a minimum.

Ambient Weather Professional Weather Station
Amazon

Ambient Weather Professional Weather Station

$180 from Amazon

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If you're an avid weather watcher, this personal weather station will let you monitor conditions in your own yard and get phone alerts about wind speed, rainfall, temperature, and humidity. Ask Alexa for the weather, and she can tell you what your station has detected.


Arlo Pro 3 Spotlight Camera System
Amazon

Arlo Pro 3 Spotlight Camera System

$319 from Amazon

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The Arlo Pro cuts the cord on your outdoor security cameras, giving you the freedom to monitor any nook and cranny. The weather-resistant cameras include rechargeable batteries, two-way audio, and wide-angle viewing. They're also compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant.


Amazon Echo Dot
Amazon
Whistle Go Explore
Amazon

Whistle Go Explore

Starting at $110.50 from Amazon

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If your dog or cat is an escape artist, the Whistle will be your best friend's new best friend. It uses GPS to pinpoint their location and sends notifications to a phone if your pet leaves a designated area. The waterproof unit even monitors their health and fitness.


Related: The Coolest Pet Tech Devices You Didn’t Know You Needed

Ooma Telo Smart Home Phone Service
Amazon

Ooma Telo Smart Home Phone Service

$73 from Amazon

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Tired of relying on your cellphone, but don't want to pay a big monthly bill for a landline? Connect the Ooma Telo to the internet and you'll get free nationwide calling. You'll also get caller ID, call waiting, voicemail, and smart-home integration with Alexa.


Samsung Family Hub French Door Refrigerator
Best Buy

Samsung Family Hub French Door Refrigerator

$2,520 from Best Buy

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Why not make your next fridge smart too? The Samsung Family Hub can show you inside your fridge so you can see what you already have while you're at the grocery, and the integrated smart screen can show photos, calendars, or memos, and even stream music or TV shows.

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance Starter Kit
Amazon

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance Starter Kit

$190 from Amazon 

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Long-lived LED bulbs are among the most efficient lights you can buy, and these smart versions take the savings one step further by giving you the ability to control them and create schedules with a smartphone. Got Alexa? Turn them on or off with your voice.

Owlet Duo Smart Baby Monitor
Amazon

Owlet Duo Smart Baby Monitor

$149 from Amazon

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Baby monitors have come a long, long way. Owlet’s camera streams high-definition video and can be paired with a "Smart Sock" that lets parents track everything from their baby’s heart rate to oxygen levels. A background audio feature means you can use your smartphone for other tasks while keeping an ear out for the baby.


Bond Smart Ceiling Fan Remote Hub
Amazon

Bond Smart Ceiling Fan Remote Hub

$99 from Amazon

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Make any remote-operated ceiling fan smart with this internet-connected hub. Use a phone to control speed, direction, and light. Better yet, connect it to Alexa or Google Assistant and turn your fans off and on with your voice.


Ring Alarm 8-Piece Home Security System
Amazon

Ring Alarm 8-Piece Home Security System

$250 from Amazon

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Looking for a smartphone-friendly security system that won't break the bank? The Ring system doesn't require professional installation or monitoring (though it's available for $20 a month). Control the alarm, sensors, and motion detector from your phone. Got a Ring doorbell or an Alexa device? It will integrate with those, too.


Related: Cheap Ways to Protect Yourself From Thieves

Roku Streaming Stick
Amazon

Roku Streaming Stick+

$42 from Amazon
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Don't have a smart TV? You can still ditch cable with the Roku. As long as your TV has an HDMI port, it offers easy access to streaming channels and hands-free control using a voice remote feature. Better yet, it’s compatible with your new 4K display as well as Alexa and Google Assistant.


Related: Smart Purchases That Pay For Themselves

August Smart Lock Pro
Amazon

August Smart Lock Pro

$221 from Amazon

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Stop worrying about whether you locked the front door. With August, you can check in from anywhere, lock or unlock remotely, and monitor who comes and goes. It’s compatible with your existing deadbolt, and you’ll get to keep and continue using your existing keys.


Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Air Purifier, Heater, and Fan
Best Buy

Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Air Purifier, Heater, and Fan

$500 from Best Buy

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This all-in-one heater, fan, and air purifier will be useful year-round, and its sleek, blade-free design means it can keep a place of honor in your living room even if you have small kids or pets. Control it with your smartphone or voice commands.


Cosori Smart 12-in-1 Air Fryer and Toaster Oven
Amazon

Cosori Smart 12-in-1 Air Fryer and Toaster Oven

$200 from Amazon

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Multifunctional appliances are all the rage, but this smart oven takes the trend one step further by letting you control many of its features with a phone or Alexa. Cooking functions including roasting, air frying, baking, broiling, dehydrating, and much more.