Just as washing machines and Crockpots promised a new era of convenience to earlier generations, wifi-equipped smart devices do the same today. A proper smart home affords conveniences like having Alexa to turn on the lights as you walk through the door or running a routine that sounds an alarm, starts brewing coffee, and plays a news podcast first thing in the morning.
This convenience is great, but a less-heralded though arguably more important benefit of a smart home is to make your house safer. There are a ton of devices, from cameras to locks to detectors, that can protect your house from dangers within and without. Here are our favorites.
If you've ever listened to a podcast, you've probably heard an ad for SimpliSafe, the plug-and-play alarm system.This particular kit comes with a panic button, keypad, base station (with extremely loud alarm), four entry sensors, and a motion sensor, a security system in a box. You can also connect more pieces, from glass-break sensors to infrared cameras, so your home is protected exactly how you want it to be.
Some of the best smart home devices are the simplest, and the August Smart Lock is no exception. It's a wifi controller for your deadbolt, a way to lock and unlock the front door with an app or a smart speaker. It can also automatically unlock when your smartphone is in the vicinity, a lifesaver for when your hands are full of groceries. And if you've ever been stressed wondering if you locked the door, you know how great the peace of mind this thing offers can be.
It's surprisingly easy to forget to close the garage door, but this smart controller makes it impossible. Actviate night mode and the door will close automatically, leaving you protected from any late-night miscreants. And if you're worried about losing a package, you can grant one-time access to a delivery driver to leave that box inside the garage.
There's a lot to like about this smart doorbell from eufy. It has a 2K camera that captures clear images and stores them not on an expensive cloud service but internally, using 256-bit data encryption. You can customize the detection zones the camera uses — where motion should start the camera recording, essentially — and see a live stream of what's happening on your Amazon Echo Show or Google Nest Hub devices. It's available as a wired or wireless device, the latter of which has a 180-day battery.
A bright light can be enough to scare off would-be nighttime intruders, but this strong floodlight adds a security camera to the mix so you can catch a glimpse of the would-be thief. It also comes with a solar panel that keeps the battery charged (and makes it possible to install this thing wherever you want to). You can of course, use the camera to look at a live stream, check out night-vision footage, and receive alerts for peoples and vehicles that activate the camera's motion detector.
This smoke and carbon monoxide detector alerts you with a loud spoken voice and phone alerts when there's an issue. It also runs a nightly check on it and any other Nest safety products you have, glowing green to let you know that everything is OK. And if you accidentally burn something on the stove, you can simply silence the detector with your phone, which is way easier than climbing on a stool to hold a tiny button while your hearing is decimated.
First things first: this air purifer has a UV light sanitizer and pre-filter, HEPA, and activated carbon filters. It will clean the air nicely, so your family doesn't breathe in dust, pollen, or smoke. You can also control it with Amazon Alexa, which means you can use your voice, sure, but you can also create schedules and routines that will, say, turn on the purifier an hour before you get home or make sure it runs on low mode at night.
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