You don’t need to be a millionaire to make your home smart. Here are the best devices under $100 that will let you turn on your lights; change the temperature; play music, TV shows and movies; and even keep an eye on your house while you’re away.
While it lacks some of the advanced scheduling and features found on TP-Link's smart plugs, Aukey's Wi-Fi Smart Plug covers the basics—they work with both Google Assistant and Alexa—and are about half the price as most other smartplugs. In fact, Aukey sells them in packs of two for around $24. We also liked that Aukey's plugs are small enough so that you can fit two in each outlet.
TP-Link's HS105 is our favorite smart plug for its small design, great app, and low price. It's an easy way to make a lamp or some other "dumb" device in your house smart. Just plug it into the HS-105, and you'll be able to set schedules for when it turns on and off, and you can control it remotely from your smartphone.
Most smart plugs are designed for indoor use only, but what about when you want to control your outdoor Christmas lights or porcelain fountain using your smartphone? The iHome ISP100 is designed to withstand the elements, works with a ton of smart home systems (such as Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit) and we found it easy to set up and use.
The lilliputian Lifx Mini Wi-Fi-connected smart bulbs are small enough so that they should fit into most fixtures where you're replacing a traditional lightbulb. While we found setup a bit tricky—it took upwards of 15 minutes—the bulbs were a cinch to use after, through their smartphone app. In addition to Alexa and Google Home, you can link the bulbs with almost any smart-home ecosystem you can name, including Nest, Samsung SmartThings, Logitech Harmony, IFTTT, Xfinity, Flic, Yeti, Yonomi and even Microsoft Cortana.
This lilliputian plug turns any dumb device “smart” by letting you control it via a smartphone app. It’s best used with things like floor lamps, but you could even use it to have your coffee maker turn on at a specific time. It’s compatible with Alexa, Google Home, Nest and IFTTT. Best of all, the Mini doesn’t block your second outlet.
These bulbs connect directly to your Wi-Fi network — no hub needed — and are both dimmable and tunable, so you can go from bright daylight to keep you alert, to soft white light in the evenings. A circadian mode automatically adjusts the lights to the time of day, and you can control them via Alexa or Google Home.
MORE: Smart Light Bulb Guide
Insert this Wi-Fi-connected battery into any smoke detector, and you'll be notified on your smartphone whenever the detector is activated. The Roost app also lets you alert others, and, as a nice touch, there's a snooze button, in case the alarm went off because you were cooking up a steak in your kitchen.