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Smart Home Features

The PuriCare AeroTower acts as a conversation piece in a room.

Turns out, sleep mode in smart fans isn’t just a gimmick

A lot of smart fans have a sleep mode. Turns out, it's not just a gimmicky feature -- it can actually help you sleep better.
Someone presses the Nest Video Doorbell in front of their home.

Is it worth upgrading to the new Google Nest wired doorbell?

Google unveiled the Nest Doorbell (wired) 2nd generation, but is it worth an upgrade?
The Yale Assure Lock 2 installed on the outside of a door.

Yale Assure Lock 2 hands-on review: tiny footprint, tremendous features

After going hands-on with the new Yale Assure Lock 2 Key-Free Wi-Fi model for a week, it's clear that this is a premium smart lock that doesn't cut any corners.
The Google Pixel Table and the Speaker Dock.

Is the Pixel Tablet a competitor to the Echo Show 15?

Not much is known about the Google Pixel Tablet, but early looks suggest it just might be a competitor to the Echo Show 15.
Photo of a woman adjusting a Nest Thermostat.

Nest Renew could be the first step to a smarter electrical grid

Nest Renew will talk with your electrical service provider in order to access greener power to your home. That's a big step for the smart grid.
i replaced my fancy coffee machine with a smart tea kettle and love it

I replaced my fancy coffee machine with a smart tea kettle, and I love it

Can a smart tea kettle really replace the magic of a fancy coffee machine? Our reviewer puts it to the test to see if it's up to the task.
google fall event 2022 smart home predictions made by

What we want to see from Google’s fall event

Google is holding a big event on October 6. Here's a closer look at what smart home reveals have been confirmed, along with a few surprises we'd like to see.
Astro looking at a dog on a couch.

Despite its new features, Astro is still impractical for most people

Amazon's Astro is a nifty invention, but it's functionality is still limited. It's not the most practical purchase for the vast majority of people.
Amazon Astro in a build with Ring Virtual Security Guard on its screen.

Everything announced at Amazon’s 2022 Fall Event: new Echos, Fire TVs, Kindle Scribe, and more

Didn't get an invite to the 2022 Amazon device event? We've got you covered. Here's a recap of everything they announced.
Matter CSA image.

Is it worth waiting for Matter to buy new smart products?

Matter is on the way, and it promises a faster, more seamless smart home. Is it worth holding out until it's live before buying your next smart light?
thermapros tempspike hands on thermaspike wireless meat thermometer

ThermoPro’s TempSpike: A wireless thermometer for the newbie in all of us

We got a sneak peek at the ThermoPro TempSpike wireless meat thermometer. Read on to see if it impressed as much as the TP25 four-prong one for grilling.
samsung artistic frame tv art mode

Smart gadgets need a face-lift. A lot of them are way too ugly.

It is high time design catches up with technology. Why can't our gadgets be beautiful and functional?
HGTV Smart Home 2022 in Wilmington, NC.

Big smart home growth predicted: These are the appliances and features we’d like to see

Smart home gadgets aren't going away. Recent studies show this market is booming. Here's what you need to know to plan your own smart home of the future.
The Bites 2 Lite device mounted on a wall.

5 Alexa skills and features your pet will love

Our four-legged friends may not be able to use Alexa themselves, but with a little programming of our own, we can easily build Alexa into the lives of our pets.
Echo Dot (4th Gen) sits on a shelf in a kitchen.

5 unique and creative uses for Alexa’s Sound Detection feature

Alexa's Sound Detection feature allows you to build Routines around a number of different audio cues. Here are five ideas for some automations you can create.
An older man using the Show and Tell skill with an Echo Show.

The 5 best Alexa skills for older people (and one bonus tip)

Alexa can help your loved ones manage prescriptions, hire a plumber, and so much more. Here are five of the best Alexa skills for older folks you can use today.
John Cleese, naked except for a photo held in front of his crotch, in A Fish Called Wanda.

Alexa has seen me naked, and that’s okay

Your smart home technology has probably seen you naked, too. Is that something to worry about? I say no.
Customers inspect the new Apple HomePod at an Apple Store on February 9, 2018 in San Francisco, California.

HomeKit Secure Video: Why it’s great and why you should use it

Apple's HomeKit Secure Video is a layered and resourceful way to store surveillance footage, and here's why you should start using it right away.
Amazon acquires iRobot

Will Amazon’s iRobot purchase turn your Roomba into a spy?

Amazon's acquisition of iRobot, the maker of Roomba, is a window into a future where one corporation has way too much information about your personal life.
The iRobot app overlaid on a Roomba.

Why Amazon acquiring iRobot will make Roombas even better

Amazon has signed a deal to acquire iRobot, and that could mean a lot of benefits for customers.
Dyson Pure Humidify Cool filters

Can an air purifier really help you breathe easier during wildfire season?

Should you shell out for an air purifier if your home's air is less than ideal? Can a purifier really help, even during wildfire season?
A woman wears Echo Frames sunglasses outside on a sunny day.

Are Echo Frames worth the $99, or are they just a gimmick?

Amazon is selling Echo Frames for $99 on Prime Day, but are they even worth that?
Echo Show 15 with base.

Which Amazon Echo should you buy on Prime Day 2022? 

You've waited all year for prices to drop. Now you just need to decide which Amazon Echo device to buy amid Amazon Prime Day deals.
Image of Google Home, 16:9 scale

How to build a smart apartment

Putting together a smart apartment requires a bit of research, but it's not as challenging as you'd think. Here's what you need to know.
HGTV Smart Home 2022 in Wilmington, NC.

Is HGTV’s Smart Home really that smart? We have different ideas

HGTV offers you a chance to win a smart home. If you missed out, you can still use our (better!) smart home device picks to create your intelligent oasis.
Amazon Echo Show 15 hanging horizontally on the wall in a kitchen.

5 reasons I still use the Echo Show 15 everyday

The Echo Show 15 came out six months ago, and I still use it on a daily basis to stay on top of tasks. Here's why I still love it.
philips hue outdoor range

How smart tech can improve your 4th of July BBQ

Want to one-up your family members' 4th of July barbecues? Let smart home tech help you show your patriotism.
The 2021 Amazon Echo Show 8 in an angled view.

I followed Alexa’s prompts for a day and this is what I learned

The Echo Show delivers prompts and news items during the day. Just how tailored are they to your preferences? We did everything it says for a day to find out.
Delta Leland

Is a smart faucet worth it?

On the surface, a smart faucet seems silly, but is it? Can an intelligent tap truly make a difference in the kitchen?
The Echo Show 15 is the largest smart display yet.

Cloud services are convenient, but they hurt smart home longevity

Relying on cloud servers for basic smart home functionality is a terrible idea.
weber genesis smart grill review

Is a smart grill worth it? We weigh the factors

Smart grills are now a thing. But do we really need to add technology to the most primal of human acts: Cooking over fire?
Roborock S7 cleaning while kids and pets play.

Is your smart home child-safe?

How friendly has the smart home become for kids? Let's take a look at the potential dangers around home automation and how to make sure your child is safe.
eufy by Anker Security Video Smart Lock installed on corner.

Why aren’t smart locks and video doorbells the same device?

Smart locks and video doorbells seem like two gadgets that would work well as a single product, but manufacturers aren't racing to produce them. Here's why.
Tim Cook at WWDC 2022.

All of Apple’s big no-shows from WWDC 2022

Unsurprisingly, the WWDC 2022 rumors weren't totally correct. Here's everything Apple didn't announce during its annual developer keynote.