With its swappable insert design, the Swidget Configurable Smart Outlet lends itself well to ever-changing smart homes. It features two standard sockets, one of which can be wirelessly controlled with a suitable insert, and in the middle is a removable tray that enables the outlet to be configured for different functions from showing if the power is out to connecting with Z-Wave smart hubs to control outlets. Head below to see it in action.
What we’re looking at today is the outlet and three of the available inserts – the USB charger, Wi-Fi control and Z-Wave control. By itself, the socket costs $40. This comes with an empty insert and no functionality. Inserts range in price from $10 for the USB charger to $42 for a Wi-Fi and Power Out Light combo. When connected to Wi-Fi or Z-Wave, only one of the sockets will be controlled. The other will function as a normal receptacle.
With the Wi-Fi insert, in addition to wireless control through the Swidget app, the outlets can be connected with Alexa, Google Assistant and IFTTT to set up routines or other triggers. And with the Z-Wave insert, the outlet can connect to SmartThings devices and other Z-Wave-enabled hubs.
Swidget Outlet: Video
Installation for the outlet is pretty straight forward. Make sure the power to the outlet is shut off before installation and if you aren’t comfortable working with electrical wires, be sure to hire a professional to assist you in installation. The included instructions demonstrate how to connect the wire and to use the included wire nuts. I had to use some needle nose pliers to remove and straighten out the cables before connecting them to the Swidget outlet.
Once installed, I first plugged in and tested the USB charger and it worked perfectly. Then I made the change to the Wi-Fi module. Once swapped out, download the Swidget app, set up an account, connect to the Swidget’s Wi-Fi network with a mobile device and then add a new device. For the Wi-Fi insert, hold the button on the front for 10-15 seconds, until the light turns blue (which is kinda dim and can be hard to see in a bright room). Then enter you wireless network’s credentials and register the device.
When opened, the Swidget app starts with the Swidget Library. From here you can add new devices or select an already installed device to control. With a device selected, the app displays what is inserted and allows control of the outlet via the Power Status button. When green, that means the outlet is powered and when grey, it is turned off. You can also tell the app what electricity costs in your area and calibrate a device to get an idea for how much power that particular outlet is using and costing.
The magic of the Swidget Configurable Smart Outlet is the swappable inserts. I have three different inserts here, but Swidget carries quite a few more selections on their website and on Amazon. Some of the more expensive inserts combine multiple features like a USB charger or guide light with Wi-Fi or Z-Wave functionality. The great thing about this is that you can install an outlet and swap out these inserts as the rooms in your house evolve.
Insert offerings from Swidget will also continue to evolve over time. In addition to the ones available now, Swidget has stated that soon they will be offering inserts which feature motion detection, aromatherapy, HD video cameras, bluetooth speakers and more. It will be exciting to see what all is available by the end of the year.
With its impressive customization, the Swidget Configurable Smart Outlet opens up a world of possibilities in a smart home. The inserts can be expensive, but the ability to easily customize their function is a unique and handy feature. For more smart home ideas, check out our ever-evolving Echo Dot diary.