smart home Stories September 28

expiredJump start your smart home for $189 with a Nest E and 2 TP-Link Smart Plugs

Newegg currently has a bundle that gives you Nest’s new Nest Thermostat E and two of TP-Link’s HS100 Smart Wall Outlets for just $188.99 shipped. If purchased separately, this bundle would cost you $220. Both devices are well-reviewed with the Nest being the top new release for thermostats on Amazon and getting 4.2/5 stars, while the HS100’s gets a 4.1/5 star rating from over 9,000 Amazon customers.

smart home Stories March 14

At this point, it seems like everyone is working on their own variation of smart mirrors. From DIY setups, to even major companies. Getting started with your own isn’t terribly difficult, but a new project on Kickstarter hopes to make use of those old tablets you have lying around. Firefly, yet another smart mirror, has launched on the crowdfunding site with one major difference: it relies on an iOS or Android tablet to power it.

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smart home Stories August 22, 2016

Get a free $50 Gift Card when you buy a Philips Hue White & Color Starter Kit (2nd gen) for $180 ($250 value)

Best Buy offers the Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance Starter Kit (2nd generation) with Apple HomeKit support and a free $50 Best Buy Gift Card for $179.99 shipped. Today’s bundle deal yields an effective price of just $129.99, which is $70 below its going rate. We saw it for a bit less last month, but that pricing hasn’t returned since then. What’s more, Amazon currently has it listed for $184.99 and doesn’t include a bonus gift card. Rated 3.7 out of 5 stars from 243 Amazon reviewers. Philips Hue allows you to take control of your home’s lightning like never before:

smart home Stories July 12, 2016

expiredTP-LINK’s latest Wi-Fi Smart Plug monitors energy use and has Alexa control for $30 (25% savings)

Today only, as a part of its Prime Day event, Amazon offers the TP-LINK Wi-Fi Smart Plug with Energy Monitoring/Alexa Control for $29.99 Prime shipped (price reflected at checkout). That’s a 25% savings off the regular price and a match for the lowest we’ve seen outside of a special Visa Checkout promotion. Rated 4/5 stars by 822 Amazon customers.

Features include:

  • Turn electronics on or off from anywhere with your tablet or smartphone using the free Kasa app
  • Use Away-Mode to turn devices on and off at different times
  • Check on devices remotely, create schedules, and set timers
  • Conserve Energy and save money on your next bill
  • Works with Alexa for voice control of electronics & appliances (no hub required)
  • Easy to use and install. Just plug a device into the Smart Plug and connect to your Wi-Fi network
  • 2-year warranty, and 24/7 unlimited technical support

expiredPhilips Hue 2nd Generation Starter Kit lets you control your LED lights w/ Siri: $125 shipped (Reg. $200)

Update (7/12 12:30pm): Amazon has the Philips Hue White Starter Kit (2nd gen) w/ HomeKit for $79.99, but the final price automatically drops to $59.99 shipped during checkout for Prime members. That’s the lowest price we’ve ever seen.

Best Buy’s eBay Store offers the second generation Philips Hue LED White/Color Starter Bundle with HomeKit support for $124.99 shipped. It typically retails for $200. Today’s deal is $25 less than Amazon’s special Prime Day pricing and $40 less than our previous all-time low mention.

Step up to the latest Philips Hue system and add HomeKit control thanks to the new smart hub. You’ll be able to recreate thousands of colors with these A19 LED bulbs. The upgraded internals are now capable of pushing out 800 lumens of light, a 33% improvement over the previous generation. Philips’ recently updated iOS and Android app offers complete control over the entire system. This is the one of the best-selling LED lights at Amazon with a collective 4.2/5 star rating from 579 reviewers.

smart home Stories July 1, 2016

Amazon offers the OSRAM LED Landscape LIGHTIFY Gardenspot Mini Outdoor Kit for $54.42 shipped. It typically sells for around $80 at Best Buy and today’s deal is a match of our all-time low mention.

Note: the previous generation model is also on sale for $44.99 Prime shipped (Reg. $70). It has much of the same functionality but slightly less powerful lights.

OSRAM and Belkin made the move last summer to release a line of smartphone-connected lights to compete with Philips’ continually expanding line of Hue products. This kit includes a 14-foot string of lights with nine Gardenspot RGB lights. Each set is dimmable and can reproduce a wide variety of colors. It is compatible with SmartThings, Wink, Nest and Amazon Echo. You’ll need the OSRAM gateway if you’re planning to use it as a standalone without any of the aforementioned products. We positively reviewed this outdoor lighting setup, calling it a “worthwhile investment” if you’re looking for a simple way to add outdoor lighting. Rated 3.8/5 stars.

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smart home Stories May 19, 2016

expiredAdd Wi-Fi functionality to your outlets with TP-LINK’s Smart Plug for $20 shipped (Reg. $30)

Update (5/19 12:05pm): Amazon offers the Belkin WeMo Wi-Fi-enabled Switch with Alexa support for $29.99 Prime shipped (Reg. $40). Rated 3.7/5 stars by over 4,000 Amazon customers.

Newegg has the TP-LINK HS100 Wi-Fi-enabled Smart Plug on sale for $19.99 shipped when promo code EMCEJFN32 is applied during checkout. It originally sold for $40 but typically is listed around $30. Today’s deal is a match of our one-day Gold Box offer from earlier this week.

smart home Stories February 2, 2016

It’s pretty hard these days to come up with an original idea. The internet is flooded with real, conceptual and on-the-way products that fill nearly every void in our lives. Evidently, for a guy named Max Braun, he found a need that couldn’t be met. After setting out to find a better bathroom mirror, he came to the conclusion that this product category has largely been untouched by the Internet of Things.

So what did he do? He built a pretty sweet two-way mirror with a built-in display that shows the latest info from Google Now. With a mixture of Android and assorted APIs, he found his way to a surprisingly polished product. More details and a gallery below.

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smart home Stories December 30, 2015

CES 2016 is just around the corner and we’ll have a full crew on-site delivering the latest news on fresh products coming out of Las Vegas. LG has kicked off the event early, quietly releasing details on a new Smart Home Hub that is eerily similar to Amazon Echo. The SmartThinQ Hub has a familiar design with a handful of features and an eye on knocking off established names in this category.

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smart home Stories December 15, 2015

expiredGet into smart lighting w/ the Philips Hue Go Portable LED System for $80 shipped (Reg. $100)

Update (12/16 9:15am): Today only, Best Buy has the Philips Friends of Hue LightStrip Luminaire Starter Kit for $99.99 shipped (Reg. $200). Includes 2 LightStrips and a bridge. Rated 4.3 out of 5 stars.

Amazon offers the Philips Hue Go Smart Portable LED Light for $79.99 with free shipping. That’s $20 below its regular price and the first significant discount we’ve seen since it was introduced over the summer. Also available via Best Buy. Rated 4 out of 5 stars.

This portable smart light features a battery life of approximately 3 hours and comes pre-programmed with five unique lighting effects: Cozy Candle, Sunday Coffee, Meditation, Enchanted Forest, and Night Adventure. Or you can choose from more than 16 millions colors to dial in custom mood lighting. It doesn’t require a bridge to run, but you’ll need one if you want to take advantage of advanced features like customized lightning scenes.

smart home Stories November 26, 2015

expiredNest Learning Thermostat (3rd Generation) w/ free $50 Amazon Gift Card: $249 shipped ($299 value), more

Update (11/26 11:30am): Amazon now has the Nest Cam at Black Friday pricing – $169.99 shipped (Reg. $200).

Amazon offers the 3rd Generation Nest Learning Thermostat with a $50 Gift Card for $249 shipped. Nest typically sells for $249, so you’re paying regular price but getting a free $50 credit to Amazon. That brings the effective price of the thermostat down to $199, which is the best we’ve seen. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars from 934 Amazon reviewers.

smart home Stories November 17, 2015

In our continued coverage of the best Black Friday deals of the year, it is time to look at some items for around the house. While we haven’t seen as many smart home products as we would have liked (yet), Best Buy and Lowe’s will both be offering solid deals on Nest and Phillips products. We’ve also picked out some not-so-smart items for the kitchen and more: expand full story

smart home Stories November 4, 2015

expiredGet the latest Nest Learning Thermostat (3rd Gen.) for $212 shipped (Reg. $249)

Target offers the Nest Learning Thermostat (3rd Gen.) for $249, but a 15% in-cart discount automatically drops your total down to $211.65 shipped. That’s a savings of $37.35 and the first discount we’ve seen on this smart home accessory that was released just 2 months ago. REDcard holders can save an additional 5%.

Use it to control your home’s temperature from your iPhone. Its auto-away feature should help you save an average of “10-12% on heating and 15% on cooling” bills. The third generation Nest Learning Thermostat has a 40% larger and sharper (229 ppi) screen to support its new Farsight feature. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars from 536 Amazon reviewers.

smart home Stories October 12, 2015

I’d be willing to bet your home has some sort of smart or internet-connected device. Whether it’s a Nest Thermostat or WeMo smart plugs, the internet is invading our home one small piece of plastic at a time. The struggle with many of these devices, such as the Nest, is that it only provides a data point for one location in your home. While it is possible to add additional thermostats, that’s not a cost-effective solution for most consumers.

That’s where Koto comes in. Its recently launched Indiegogo campaign offers three different sensors that each collect and report on important measurable data in your home, like air quality or dust count. By doing so, Koto is able to paint a more reliable picture of your home’s health and can even recommend on how to improve it…

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smart home Stories September 24, 2015

Smart connected devices for our homes are becoming more commonplace, with technology giants like Apple and Samsung leading the way with support for a myriad of devices. Even Amazon has an internet-connected speaker that will control your lights, thermostat and more.

One of the biggest issues with this technology is price. Many consumers are not willing to pay the premium that comes with support for Apple’s HomeKit or other platforms like Z-Wave or Zigbee. Simply put, the deadbolt has worked in its existing state for decades, why upgrade it now?

Kwikset has been leading the charge on smartphone connected locks with its Kevo Bluetooth-enabled product. But for roughly $200, the adoption rate has been slow. Today, the lock maker has released a new deadbolt that drops a number of features but retains its internet connectivity in exchange for a lower price point.

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smart home Stories September 17, 2015

iRobot is finally giving its Roomba vacuums the smart home treatment. Today, it was announced that the new Roomba 980 would include Wi-Fi connectivity that enables cloud-based administration and more. Coinciding with today’s release is the new iRobot HOME app that brings smartphone management of this new vacuum to life. The 980 will even make a virtual map of your home with its new on-board camera. All of these new features are going to cost you though.  expand full story

smart home Stories September 15, 2015

expiredBuy a D-Link DCS-5009L IP Surveillance Camera and get a free Smart Plug: $70 shipped (~$115 value)

Newegg offers the D-Link DCS-5009L Pan/Tilt Wireless Cloud IP Surveillance Camera for $69.99 shipped. A free D-Link DSP-W215 Internet Connected Smart Plug will be added to your cart at checkout. This deal represents a $115 value as the camera typically goes for $70 at Amazon while the plug carries a $45 retail price tag, and is an effective low price on each product.

D-Link’s DCS-5009L surveillance camera features pan and tilt viewing, night vision, motion detection and remote viewing via the iOS or Android app. It is rated 3.9/5 stars by 372 Amazon customers.

The smart plug allows users to remotely turn devices on or off and schedule power with the accompanying iOS or Android app. It also features thermal protection and device energy monitoring. Rated 3.1/5 stars.

smart home Stories August 16, 2015

Walmart has the Quirky + GE Aros Smart Window Air Conditioner for $149 shipped today. That’s more than 50% under the original $300 listing, $81 under the typical price over at Amazon, $50+ under the next best prices, $28 under our previous mention and the best price we can find.

The Quirky Smart Air Conditioner comes with a number of intelligent features that enable it to set the temperature just the way you like it, at just the right time. It is equipped with 8,000 BTUs of power and, according to Quirky, can easily cool a room up to about 350 square feet. There is a simple installation here as it should slide right into traditional window openings from 24.5 to 40.5-inches.

As we have mentioned previously, reviews are mixed on the Aros. But this is more than 50% off the original price, from a trusted retailer, and the best price we have ever posted. More details below and over on 9to5Mac:

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smart home Stories August 14, 2015

Late last year, Keen Home received over 1.5 million in funding to further the development of its Smart Vent product. And now a full year later, the intelligent vent cover replacement is ready to come to market this fall. Much like other smart home products looking to make things easier around the house and more affordable in the process, Smart Vent is looking to bring some innovation to those old vent covers we have been using for years: expand full story

smart home Stories June 5, 2015

There are a wide range of devices available for consumers today that are internet and smartphone connected. It is often a struggle to decide whether to upgrade existing products with an add-on or make the investment in a new release that has these features built-in. Upgrading can be hit or miss and new products, especially appliances, can be pricey. With the impending arrival of Apple’s HomeKit, now is the time to get on the smart home train more than ever.

A new product called tado° has put air conditioning in its sights for a smart upgrade. We have seen smart AC units before, but the execution has at times left something to be desired. By adding tado° to an existing system, consumers have more options with the actual cooling unit, as long as the existing unit meets some requirements. expand full story

smart home Stories May 4, 2015

Following up on the popularity of Philips Hue and Belkin’s WeMo offerings, GE has announced that it will soon be releasing its first Apple HomeKit-enabled Intelligent LED lightbulbs. GE is also including features that will help save on energy costs and even help improve your sleep. expand full story

smart home Stories April 30, 2015


9to5Toys Specials currently has the Ring™ Video Doorbell for $189 with free shipping using $10 off coupon code: ring9t05 at checkout (Tax in CA). That’s $40 off the original price and the lowest price we can find it. It lets you see who is on your front step via a live video stream on your phone. We reviewed it very positively on 9to5mac and it gets 4/5 star reviews at Amazon where it is $10 more expensive with tax in more states.

It’s nice to know who is on the other side of the door before you open it, but the Wi-Fi streaming is also great for when you’re away from home. The Ring™ Doorbell has motion detection and two-way audio, so it knows when someone is there, and it lets you tell the delivery guy to leave the package somewhere suitable. The video is available on both iOS and Android devices, and it is 720p quality. Optionally, you can record the video clips for later viewing (one year of this service is included in the deal). Installation is pretty easy, and the Doorbell can run on battery for 12 months at a time.

  • 1-way video and 2-way audio for ideal communication
  • Cloud Recording add-on for storing clips to view later — one year included
  • Advanced motion detection system with configurable zones
  • Convenient design connects to existing doorbell wiring or runs off built-in battery
  • Easy installation
  • 720p video recording
  • Long-lasting battery provides 12 months of normal use

Pick up the Ring™ Doorbell here and use coupon code ring9to5 at checkout. expand full story

smart home Stories April 27, 2015

Last week we featured a couple of smart devices to help keep the items in your kitchen automatically replenished, including these tiny iOS connected Droplet buttons and this hybrid smartcan. While the GeniCan isn’t going to help keep your floors clean at the same time, it can certainly make any one of your regular trashcans a whole lot smarter.

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smart home Stories March 16, 2015

The weather is starting to warm up and that means grilling season is right around the corner. While anyone can add a smart thermometer to a grill, SABER is introducing a new smart grill called the EDGE that puts even more info right on your iPhone.

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smart home Stories January 15, 2015

Consumers are making a run for LED bulbs and internet connected devices, today Cree announced a new solution to these trends. Already known for its highly-rated products, Cree is now bringing smart home compatibility with the Connected LED Bulb. They have priced them very competitively, coming in at 50% the price of a comparable smart home lighting option.

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