Wednesday, August 15, 2018
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Affordable Smart Home Devices Under $40

Smart Home devices have been around for a few years now. You would think being the tech nerd that I am I would have been all over smart home devices, but I only really got into smart home a this year. I think the big thing for me was I didn’t want a bunch of different apps for different products. What brings smart home devices together now are smart home hubs like Amazon Echo and Google Home. With these we can control all of our devices with a single application and much more. Now that I’ve had to chance to really get into smart home here are 5 affordable smart home devices that you can pickup for under $40! Just in time for the holidays!

Amazon Echo Dot ($29.99 – Amazon)

We are going to start things off with our Smart Home hub, which is the Amazon Echo dot. It is basically a smaller version of Amazon’s larger Echo speakers. The Echo Dot is extremely affordable at only $29.99. Echo Dot gives you the power of Amazon Alexa, so you can literally ask it anything. You can say, “Alexa what is the weather”, “Alexa who is the president”, etc. All of your smart devices can be linked to Alexa, so you can use them with voice control. I actually never thought I would use voice control, but now it is weird not using it!

TP-LINK HS105 Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini ($34.95 – Amazon)

Next up is the TP-LINK HS105 Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini. It is basically a power plug that you can remotely turn on and off. The reason I went for the mini was that it is ideal for using with a power strip. I am using the HS105 with my monitor, so I can walk into the office and say, “Alexa turn on monitor” and boom my monitor is on and ready to go. You can also use TP-LINK’s Kasa app and see the total run-time, set schedules, put the plug on a timer and more. These smart plugs are great for devices that are harder to turn on and off and older devices that you want to remotely control.

Yeelight Smart Wi-Fi RGB LED Light Strip ($29.99 – Amazon)

RGB LED strips are great and we’ve shown you a perfect RGB LED strip for your monitor in the past, but what about one you can control using an app on your phone or Alexa. We’ve found the perfect RGB strip for you, it is the Yeelight Smart Wi-Fi RGB LED Light Strip and it is only $29.99, which makes it one of the most affordable smart RGB strips available. I have this strip attached to the backside of my desk and using the app I can easily turn the strip on and off, change colors, set scenes and more. It is really cool walk into the office and say, “Alexa turn desk lights to blue” and boom they turn on to blue!

TP-LINK LB130 Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb ($36.94 – Amazon)

Smart Bulbs are a great addition to any smart home setup and TP-LINK has some of the most affordable out there. Even better is that you don’t need an additional hub or anything like that to get them to work. You just plug them in and they are good to go! The LB130 is their color changing hue bulb, which means you can adjust the colors as well as brightness. It also makes use of TP-LINK’s Kasa app so you can fine tune the colors you want, set the brightness, setup a schedule and more. I mean who wants to walk over to their lamp to turn it on? You can use the Kasa app or just say, “Alexa turn on lights”, or even “Alexa turn lights to red”.

Fabriq RIFF Smart Speaker ($39.99 – Amazon)
Fabriq Riff Smart Speaker

If you are looking for an alternative to Amazon’s Echo Dot the Fabriq RIFF Smart Speaker is a great choice. It has Amazon Alexa built-in and unlike the Echo Dot it is not always listening, so you have to press a button to activate Alexa. The RIFF is also completely portable, unlike the Echo Dot, which needs to be plugged it. So you can easily take it from room to room. If you actually plan to listen to music on your Echo Dot, the Fabriq is a much better speaker and it is a WiFi speaker meaning that the music you play from your phone is being streamed over WiFi so you have a much further range than a typical Bluetooth speaker. And face it the Fabriq looks pretty awesome too!

So that is our list of some very affordable Smart Home devices. Let us know if there is a product we missed on this list in the comments below.

Bob Buskirk
the authorBob Buskirk
About 10 years of computer experience. Been messing around with electronics since I was 5, got into computers when I was in highschool, been modding them ever since then. Very interested in how things work and their design.
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