The Top Smart Home Hubs of 2017: Make the “Smart” Choice
Home automation is everywhere these days, from lights that go on with the flick of a wrist to refrigerators that can tell you what you need. But, as great as all these gadgets are, they don’t run themselves. You see, if you want your lights to go on with a simple command or need your house alarm to engage at 6 automatically, you need to program them and control them. Which means you need gadgets for your gadgets.
And if you’re like me and lose the remote every hour or can’t even program your phone, the idea of all that might seem like too much. Thankfully, it’s not thanks to the many smart home hubs you can buy. Designed to look like a speaker, these hubs can control multiple devices, as well as perform other services so that you can do everything with one gadget. To help you choose the best one for your home, I’ve reviewed and ranked the Top Smart Home Hubs of 2017.
The Top Smart Home Hubs: Automation at its Best
- 1 The Top Smart Home Hubs: Automation at its Best
- 1.1 Samsung SmartThings Hub
- 1.2 All Other Support Devices/h3> The many ZigBee powered SmartThing sensors, such as water leak sensors, motion sensors, and more are a homeowner’s dream while the IFTTT channels let you custom command whatever gadgets you have. Plus, there’s a backup battery, so if you lose power, your SmartThings hub can still monitor and alert on devices you mark as important, like door sensors. That being said, there is one drawback with this system, and that’s the setup. It has an Android/Windows/iOS app that is your only way to access and program it, and it is a bit complicated. The main issue is that there is no straightforward way to find anything; whether you need the settings to configure your motion sensors or are looking to program your thermostat, searching for them takes a while, And sadly, once you find what you’re looking for, the steps to program them is a bit muddied too. It’s not the worst, but it needs to be improved. However, give yourself some extra time for programming because the good outweighs the bad here, especially when you consider the under $75 price tag. Amazon Echo/Echo Dot: Future Voice Home Automation
- 1.3 Wink Hub 2
- 1.4 Google Home
- 1.5 Smart Home Hubs: What Can They Do For You?
Now it is time to take at the best home automation hubs on the market. I’ll give you the pros and cons of each, explain how easy or difficult it is to operate and give you a rundown of what systems and devices it’s compatible with, to make choosing easier than ever.
- Exceptional quality
- Endless device compatibility
- Backup battery
- Setup takes some time
Personally, this is my top pick, because it works with well over 200 devices, which is significantly more than any of the other hubs. It’s also exceptional regarding performance, providing endless integrations. It connects using WiFi and is Z-Wave- and ZigBee-enabled, allowing you to control multiple devices without needing to use several apps or single-use hubs. Even better, it gives you plenty of options on how to control all those devices. For example, you can turn down the lights and change the color if you have the Philips Hue lighting system.
Speaking of which, in addition to Philips, this device works with the Amazon Echo, Nest Thermostat, several of the Belkin WeMo devices and more. They’ve also added Bluetooth radio, which is set to be available in the next 6 months. Now, without getting too technical, I need to point out the extraordinary integration and customization possibilities for anyone with even the slightest tech knowledge.