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Your Complete Guide to the Best Smart Plugs

Smart plugs offer an easy, affordable entry point for smart home technology. They're inexpensive, easy to install, and can bring a new level of convenience to your home. From voice activation to remote app control, the possibilities are vast. This guide introduces you to smart plugs and shows you how best to use them.

Updated: 06/26/2024
Best Smart Plugs

Smart home technology is becoming more affordable and accessible than ever. Still, not everyone is quite prepared to take the plunge and rewire their entire home. In these cases, there is a great option out there. If you want to experience the convenience and reduced energy costs of a smart home without a huge commitment, it’s all about smart plugs.

Smart plugs are a great way to get your feet wet and decide what you do and don’t like about smart technology. Below, we provide a complete introductory guide to smart plugs to help you decide how to use them in your home.

Our Picks

Amazon Smart Plug with Alexa

Best Alexa-Compatible Smart Plug

The Amazon Smart Plug is the easiest and most reliable way to add voice control and smart features to any outlet in your home.

If you’re looking for a simple, no-fuss way to make your home smarter, the Amazon Smart Plug is the perfect solution. This compact device allows you to control any outlet with just your voice, thanks to its seamless integration with Alexa. Setting up the plug is a breeze – simply plug it in, open the Alexa app, and you’ll be ready to go in minutes. No smart home hub required. This makes it an excellent entry point for those curious about exploring the world of smart home technology.

One of the standout features of the Amazon Smart Plug is its reliability. Unlike some other smart plugs that can be finicky or lose connection, this plug automatically reconnects to Alexa after power or Wi-Fi outages. You can trust that your devices will always be accessible and controllable. The plug is also designed to be compact, ensuring that it won’t block your second outlet. This allows you to maximize the use of wall sockets. Its sleek appearance blends well with various home aesthetics, making it a subtle addition to any room.

With the Amazon Smart Plug, the possibilities are endless. Use it to control lamps, fans, coffee makers, and more with just your voice. You can even set up routines in the Alexa app to automate your devices, like having your lights turn on at sunset or your coffee maker start brewing at 7am every morning. The plug makes it easy to add convenience and efficiency to your daily life.

What We Like

  • Extremely easy setup process
  • Reliable connection, automatically reconnects after outages
  • Seamless voice control through Alexa
  • Compact design doesn’t block second outlet

What We Don’t Like

  • Only works with Alexa, not compatible with other voice assistants or smart home hubs
  • A bit pricey compared to some other smart plug options
  • Some users reported occasional connectivity issues

Kasa Smart Plug Mini 15A

Best Smart Home Wi-Fi Outlet

Experience the convenience of controlling your home appliances with your voice. Kasa Smart Plug Mini brings hands-free automation for your home electronic appliances.

Kasa Smart Plug Mini is a smart home Wi-Fi outlet that integrates seamlessly with Alexa, Google Home Assistant, and IFTTT. This 15A smart home plug is the epitome of convenience, delivering an extraordinary experience of controlling home electronic appliances right from your smartphone, regardless of your location.

The plug operates on a 2.4GHz Wi-Fi connection and provides a seamless set-up process that involves plugging in and following simple instructions on the Kasa app. With a 15A maximum load capacity, the Kasa Smart Plug Mini can handle a wide range of devices, from lamps and fans to humidifiers and other home electronics. Its reliability and versatility make it a must-have for any smart home enthusiast.

The Kasa app also offers a range of useful features, such as scheduling, timers, and even an away mode that randomly turns your devices on and off to simulate occupancy while you’re away. These features not only add convenience to your life but also help you save energy and money in the long run.

In addition, the smart plug is compact and minimally designed, allowing the use of the second plug on an outlet without any interference. The smart plug provides an added layer of safety with its flame-retardant shell and nickel-plated phosphor bronze pins, ensuring durable and stable connections.

What We Like

  • Seamless integration with Alexa, Google Home Assistant, and IFTTT
  • Easy set up and use with the Kasa app
  • Scheduling, timer, and away mode features
  • Compact design with a flame-retardant shell

What We Don’t Like

  • Does not support a 5GHz Wi-Fi connection
  • Occasional issues with connectivity

Kasa Smart Plug Power Strip HS300

Best Smart Power Strip for Energy Monitoring

The Kasa Smart Plug Power Strip HS300 is the ultimate smart power strip that offers individual outlet control, energy monitoring, and seamless integration with Alexa and Google Home.

The Kasa Smart Plug Power Strip HS300 is a game-changer for anyone looking to make their home smarter and more energy-efficient. With six individually controlled smart outlets and three USB ports, this power strip allows you to manage your devices with ease. The ETL-certified surge protection ensures that your sensitive electronics are shielded from sudden power surges, giving you peace of mind.

With its energy monitoring capability, you can monitor how much energy each connected device consumes and easily turn off ones that are using too much power. This feature is incredibly useful for keeping your electricity bills in check. In fact, some users have reported saving up to $70 per year by reducing power consumption on idle devices.

You can control your devices from anywhere using the Kasa Smart app or with voice commands through Alexa, Google Assistant, or Microsoft Cortana. No hub required. The app also allows you to set schedules for each outlet, so you can automate your devices to turn on and off at specific times.

The HS300 features a sleek, modern look that fits seamlessly into any home decor. The power strip is sturdy and well-constructed, with a weight that prevents it from sliding around. The LED indicators for each outlet are a nice touch, allowing you to see which outlets are in use at a glance.

What We Like

  • Individual outlet control for customized device management
  • Energy monitoring helps reduce electricity bills
  • ETL-certified surge protection for sensitive electronics
  • Easy setup and control through the Kasa Smart app

What We Don’t Like

  • USB ports are not individually controllable
  • Relatively large size compared to standard power strips
  • No support for 5GHz WiFi networks

Kasa Apple HomeKit Outdoor Smart Plug

Best Smart Outdoor Plug for Apple HomeKit

The Kasa Apple HomeKit Outdoor Smart Plug is the perfect solution for controlling your outdoor lights and devices with Siri, Alexa, or Google Assistant. Its IP64 weather resistance and long Wi-Fi range make it a reliable choice for any smart home.

The Kasa Apple HomeKit Outdoor Smart Plug is a versatile and powerful device that seamlessly integrates with your Apple ecosystem, allowing you to control your outdoor lights and devices using Siri, Alexa, or Google Assistant. With its IP64 weather resistance rating, this smart plug is built to withstand the elements, ensuring reliable performance in various outdoor conditions.

Kasa Outdoor Smart Plug can control two outlets independently. This means you can set different schedules or control each connected device separately, providing greater flexibility in managing your outdoor lighting or other electronic appliances. The Kasa app makes it easy to create groups and scenes, allowing you to control multiple devices with a single tap or voice command.

The plug’s Wi-Fi connectivity boasts an impressive range of up to 300 feet, ensuring stable performance even if your router is located further away from your outdoor space. With its compatibility with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant, this smart plug fits seamlessly into your existing smart home setup, regardless of your preferred voice assistant.

What We Like

  • Individual control of 2 outlets
  • IP64 weather resistance for outdoor use
  • Long-range Wi-Fi connectivity up to 300 feet
  • Compatible with Apple HomeKit, Alexa, and Google Assistant

What We Don’t Like

  • Requires a 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network
  • Plug design may block the second outlet in some cases

Philips Hue Smart Plug

The Philips Hue Smart Plug turns any light into a smart light, offering seamless integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit. It's the perfect addition to your smart home setup.

The Philips Hue Smart Plug is designed to blend seamlessly into any environment with its inconspicuous, compact design. It’s small and white, allowing it to fit neatly into your outlet without blocking other sockets. With compatibility across major platforms like Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit, it offers a seamless integration experience that is hard to beat. You can easily set up voice control in the Hue app and use simple voice commands to control your lights.

Simply plug it into the outlet, plug in your light, and use Bluetooth for instant light control. If you want to unlock more features, you can connect it to the Hue Bridge which unlocks the full potential of the plug, allowing for automations, out-of-home control, and a stable connection that won’t drain your Wi-Fi. This makes it an excellent choice for those who already own other Philips Hue products.

The plug is not without its limitations. It functions primarily as an on/off switch and lacks dimming capabilities, which can be a drawback if you are looking for a more nuanced lighting experience. Despite this, its reliability and ease of use make it a worthy investment, especially for those already embedded in the Hue ecosystem.

What We Like

  • Easy setup with Bluetooth or Hue Bridge
  • Compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit
  • Reliable and stable connection
  • Compact design fits neatly in your outlet

What We Don’t Like

  • Requires Hue Bridge to unlock more features
  • Lacks dimming capabilities, limited to on/off functionality
  • Higher price point compared to similar products

Wyze 2.4GHz WiFi Smart Plug

Control your home from anywhere with the Wyze Smart Plug. Enjoy seamless connectivity with Google Assistant, Alexa, IFTTT and more. Turn your home into a smart haven with a simple command.

This Wyze two-pack smart plug allows you to control your home appliances remotely, offering an unprecedented level of convenience and automation. The smart plug is crafted to provide an exceptional user experience. With its scheduling feature, you can program your appliances to turn on or off at specific times, catering to your daily routines. Imagine waking up to the aroma of freshly brewed coffee or ensuring your devices are turned off when not in use – all automated for energy efficiency and peace of mind.

Wyze Smart Plug’s vacation mode randomly turns your devices on and off, creating the illusion of an occupied home and deterring potential intruders. Additionally, the grouping feature lets you manage multiple plugs in one room, turning everything on or off with a single command.

For those concerned about compatibility, the Wyze Smart Plug works seamlessly with a 2.4GHz WiFi connection, ensuring reliable performance without the need for a separate hub. The compact design of the plug does not obstruct other outlets, making it a practical choice for any home.

Whether you’re juggling groceries or simply don’t want to leave the comfort of your couch, controlling your home is as simple as asking your smart assistant. This level of convenience and control makes the Wyze smart plug an excellent addition to any smart home ecosystem.

What We Like

  • Seamless integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT
  • Remote control and scheduling for energy efficiency
  • Vacation mode for enhanced home security
  • Grouping feature for easy control of multiple devices

What We Don’t Like

  • Connection issues after power outage
  • Can have latency issues with commands
  • Requires a 2.4GHz WiFi connection, not compatible with 5GHz WiFi

What Are Smart Plugs

Smart plugs are individual outlets that can be controlled through either voice command or remotely through an app. These devices plug directly into your regular wall sockets, just like an adapter would. They are equipped with either Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or a program like Z-Wave, which allows them to communicate. So, rather than purchasing individual smart appliances (which can be very pricey), you can plug regular appliances into the smart plugs to get similar capability for a lower cost.

You can switch on lights before you enter a room, power down TVs and game consoles when they’re not being used, or set timers on your exterior lights. Smart plugs allow you to have a greater level of control over the electronic devices in your home. This can both increase convenience and usability, as well as reduce overall energy costs.

And you can do it all with a much lower upfront cost than you might think.

Who Should Get These

Considering the low prices and wide availability of smart plugs, now is definitely the time to get on board. So, to directly answer the question of who should get these, the answer is “anyone who wants to.” More to the point, smart plugs may be especially helpful for the following people.

Renters/Apartment Dwellers

People who cannot make permanent alterations to their homes can still experience smart tech by using these plugs. Your landlord might not love the idea of you tinkering around with the wiring in your apartment, but you can completely sidestep that issue now.

Some of the best aspects of smart plugs are their versatility, portability, and lack of hard-wiring. These devices plug into your existing outlets, so there are no lasting installations. This is also helpful if you decide to switch up the location of your smart plugs. There’s nothing to uninstall or reinstall.

People on a Budget

Smart plugs are far less expensive than some other types of smart technology. Plus, when the only work to be done is plugging in an adapter, you do not have to involve an electrician. This is a very DIY-friendly installation, meaning the costs for this project won’t extend too far beyond the cost of the plugs themselves. You can transform your home into a smart home with just a single trip to the hardware store.

People Looking for Greater Peace of Mind

If you find yourself wondering, “Did I turn the lights off?” frequently, smart plugs can allow you to check in remotely. Likewise, if you don’t like coming home to a dark house, smart plugs let you switch your lights on while you’re on the train ride home.

Have a sneaking suspicion that certain electronics in your home are drawing more than their fair share of power? You can take control back with smart outlets. Some devices like TVs or computers may continue to draw power even when switched off. You can cut that off at the source by switching off the smart plug when these devices are not in use.

Lastly, you’re far less likely to encounter any electrical hazards when no hard-wiring is required. If you don’t like the idea of rummaging around in your home’s electrical system, you can stay out of it completely by using smart plugs.

Smart Plug Capabilities

Smart plugs offer an exciting chance to experience smart home capability with relatively little fuss. Besides being simple on/off switches, smart plugs offer a range of different options. When shopping, be sure to check which features are available, as it may vary from brand to brand.

Convert Any Lamp to a Smart Home Device

By purchasing a few smart plugs, you can effectively turn nearly every light in your home into a smart device. You can connect them with a system such as Google Home, Apple Home, or Amazon’s Alexa for a fully integrated experience.

Motion Sensing

Some smart plugs offer motion sensing technology, which means they can power themselves up or down in response to activity in the room. Imagine a dimly lit room brightening up every time you open the door, and the light switching itself off again after you leave. It adds both convenience and energy-saving measures to your home.

Voice Activation

Especially if you are using a system such as Google Home, Apple Home, or Alexa, voice activation is one of the cooler and more widely available features. You can tell your home to turn on the upstairs lights before you go up, or you can tell it to turn off your lights once you’re in bed.

Smartphone/App Control

Many smart plugs can be controlled through a smartphone app. This is especially helpful if you want long-distance remote control. Imagine being on vacation hundreds of miles away and turning on your porch light from your phone. Of course, smartphone control will also work when you are inside the house.


Want to make sure your exterior lights turn on at the same time every evening? Want to ensure everything is off by 11 pm? Some smart plugs offer you the ability to pre-program a schedule. These can often be controlled through a smartphone as well, so they are very easy to adjust or change as needed.

Uses For Smart Plugs by Room

There are endless possibilities for how to put your smart plugs to use in your own home. To give you some ideas, let’s go room by room to point out some suggestions.

Living Room

The living room is where families gather for relaxation, entertainment, and togetherness. Undoubtedly, the star of the living room is the entertainment center, and nearly everything in it can benefit from being attached to a smart plug.

Look at the number of cable boxes, Blu-ray players, and game consoles lined up beneath the TV. Each one of these (including the TV itself) continues to draw power even when it is turned off. Clever use of smart plugs can significantly cut down the energy consumption of this room.

Of course, you can hook up any lamps in the room to smart plugs. When the holidays roll around, you can pre-program those festive interior lights.

Home Office

Like the living room, there are often a lot of large electronic devices put to use in a home office. Among them are computers, laptops, printers, fans, dehumidifiers, etc. Again, many of these will continue to draw power even when they are turned off. Smart outlets can make good gatekeepers in that regard, making sure that you are only paying for the electricity you actually use.

If you have environmental controls such as fans or dehumidifiers, you can turn those on prior to the start of your workday, so you are entering a room that feels comfortable.


If you have freestanding lamps, or plug-in lights in your kitchen, you can set these up with a smart plug to have a greater degree of control over the light in the room. You can turn off your unused appliances to help save money on electricity too. Remember, when looking for any electronic devices for the kitchen, waterproofing is recommended.


You can use smart plugs to program the lights in your bedroom to automatically turn on or off at certain times of day. This can be especially helpful if you have trouble sticking to a schedule. Let the smart plugs do it for you. If you have a TV in your bedroom, a smart plug can also be put to good use there as well.


Always use waterproof devices in the bathroom. Smart plugs can be used in the bathroom for extra peace of mind. Worried that you left a curling iron plugged in? Now you can shut off that outlet remotely.

Of course, these are just a few examples. Any outlet in your room can benefit from a smart plug. Use your imagination, and put this technology to work for you.

Smart Plugs Vs. Smart Switches

There is sometimes a bit of confusion between smart plugs and smart switches. Smart plugs, the things we’ve been discussing in this article, plug right into traditional wall outlets. Smart switches, on the other hand, require hardwiring.

Both have somewhat similar capabilities. They can both respond to voice control, motion sensing, remote control, and other standard features. The main difference between the two of them is that smart switches are a more permanent installation. If you are not 100% comfortable working with your home’s wiring, it is recommended that you hire an electrician.

Smart switches may offer you wider ranges of capabilities such as dimming or pre-programmed light “recipes,” but they are also limited in that they cannot be moved from the spot of their installation.

Many families find that a combination of smart plugs and smart switches works best for them.

Mistakes to Avoid

When choosing your smart plugs, be aware of the following potential issues. Avoiding these can save you a lot of time, money, and frustration.


This might be the most common mistake. If you are brand-new to smart home technology, you may not realize that certain devices are completely incompatible. The best thing to do is take stock of everything you need, write out a list, and begin researching your options.

One of the most common issues faced by new smart plug owners is that moment where the plug won’t talk to their phone or tablet. Consider which type of technology you use every day (Apple, Android, etc.) and make sure the smart plugs you purchase are compatible.

Remember, while some smart plugs work through Wi-Fi, others need Bluetooth, while still, others need technology like Z-Wave. If your home isn’t already set up for that, you will need to get it ready before you attempt to install anything new.

Wrong Sizing

Smart plugs are getting more streamlined and compact, but some are still significantly bulkier than others. It never hurts to do a bit of measuring and planning before purchasing anything.

If your smart plug is going to cover more than one space on a wall outlet or power strip, make sure you are prepared for that. If the smart plug needs to fit into a small space such as behind a bookshelf, make sure there is enough clearance for the smart plug, plus whatever will be plugged into it.

Indoor/Outdoor Use

Smart plugs are electronic devices, and as such, they will typically be rated for either indoor use, outdoor use, or both. If you intend to use a smart plug outdoors, it absolutely must be rated for the outdoors. This is a safety issue.

Remember, even some indoor environments may require special precautions. If you plan to use a smart plug near your kitchen sink or in your bathroom, you should look for an option with waterproofing.

Failure to Plan

When you first begin thinking about smart home technology, it’s easy to get carried away. Still, don’t go running off to the store or to an online retailer without a plan in place first. You may find yourself sitting at home with six new smart plugs but not the hub you need to make them work. Or, you may find that you need more plugs than you thought, and now this “simple” installation has turned into a multi-day process. Yes, smart plugs are very easy to use, but they should still be treated like any other home improvement project. Plan first.

This is a very exciting time for those interested in adding smart technology to their homes. Thanks to low prices, market competition, and wide distribution, the average person can now update their home in ways they never imagined. Good luck with your smart lighting projects, and remember to put the advice in this guide to good use.

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