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ith the rise in smart technology, our homes are becoming smarter than ever and the latest homeware appliance to be revolutionised is the humble plug. Smart plugs allow you to control your household appliances anywhere with just the click of a button. Gone are the days you cave to the niggling feeling of whether you definitely did unplug your straighteners.

So, what is a smart plug?

Whilst it might look like your standard plug, once plugged into a wall socket and connected to Wi-Fi, a smart plug allows you to control any household gadget directly from your phone. For example, with a smart plug you can switch the kettle on whilst you’re on your commute home or get the coffee machine grinding from the comfort of your bed as you snooze your morning alarm.

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The smart plug can also be synced up with a smart home hub such as a Google Home or Amazon Echo, allowing you to switch the lamp on with the help of Alexa through voice enabled commands.

Many of the smart plugs we tested work with a platform named IFTTT, “if this, then that” which allows differently branded gadgets to all work together seamlessly.

Can a smart plug save you money?

As energy prices soar, these nifty gadgets will definitely help save you precious pennies. The scheduling feature on many of these smart plugs allows you to set timers and duration periods for lights and heating so you don’t waste energy when it’s not necessary. Overall, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory found that smart plugs can save a household anywhere between one and 4.58 per cent of energy usage, equal to 500-1000 kilowatts a year.

Knowing where to start with smart plugs can be confusing so we’ve rounded up the best on the market.

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KP115 Kasa Smart Socket with Energy Monitoring

Kasa

Compatibility: Alexa, Google Home, Samsung Bixby

Size: 5.15 cm x 3.75 cm x 7.25 cm

Alongside controlling your devices, this smart plug allows you to monitor the energy consumption of each appliance whenever, and wherever, you like. This smart plug is the most compatible of the ones reviewed when it comes to hands-free voice activation – connecting to not only Alexa and Google but also Samsung.

Kasa also features a nifty “away mode” which switches your selected gadgets on and off at random times, great when you’re jetting off for longer periods and don’t want to leave your house looking unattended.

Buy now £20.49, Amazon
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Amazon Smart Plug

Amazon

Compatibility: Alexa

Size: 9.62 cm x 5.6 cm x 6.3 cm

The Amazon branded plug works best if Alexa is already up and running in your house as it operates exclusively with these enabled devices. We loved how simple it was to set up and with everything controlled through the app, you don’t need to worry about …….

Source: https://www.standard.co.uk/shopping/esbest/gadgets-tech/best-smart-plugs-b986055.html

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