Matches many of the features of premium cameras, but cloud storage isn’t great
Reolink is a well-known name and among the best outdoor security cameras. With a series of models for both indoor and outdoor use, each offering distinct options, it’s easy to find a camera to cover your needs. The new Argus 3 Pro strikes a great balance between features for an outdoor security camera, while coming in at a price below many premium cameras with the same features. While it’s a solid camera, Reolink’s cloud hosting service needs some work.
Probably one of the best smart doorbells, if only most of its features weren’t behind a paywall
A video doorbell is one of the best smart home devices you can invest in. Not only does it allow the convenience of checking on visitors even when you’re not home, but it also doubles as a security camera and provides insightful notifications when it senses motion, people, and even packages left at your door. Most of the doorbells on the market can also integrate with third-party providers to help you create automated routines for added convenience.
It cleans your floors and itself without needing your help
When robot vacuums first launched, they were clumsy and happily bumped into furniture and walls to try to find their way around while cleaning. They could only vacuum, with limited suction power and efficiency, and came with a small base that served only for charging.
A solid camera meets a subpar app experience and a pretty high price tag
There are a lot of great security cameras out there, and the Nooie Pro Cam is decent if all you need is a powerful 2K camera for day and night that you can check in on from time to time. While its battery life is formidable, the camera's in-app experience is subpar at best. The lag you'll experience when accessing your camera or adjusting its settings will be enough to dissuade you from using it much. And that defeats the point of a security camera, doesn't it?
Peace of mind for six months on a single charge
Wyze has become very well known for producing affordable home security devices that perform on par with cameras two or three times as expensive. Since the company introduced its first camera with its “Starlight” sensor (and subsequently put that sensor in every camera update), the improvements to low light performance and added color footage at night have made them excellent bang-for-the-buck cameras. The original Cam Outdoor was already great, but the Cam Outdoor V2 version is one of the best battery-powered security cameras money can buy.
A strong security system even without the pricey subscription
Amazon's Ring Alarm Pro is an absolute beast. It's a powerful all-in-one home security system that comes with a speedy Eero router as an added bonus, and it's priced pretty fairly for all the hardware you get — $249 to start, going higher depending on what different accessories you mix and match into your desired setup. But if you're not opting for Amazon's $20/month subscription to unlock (and maintain) its fortress-like functionality, you can save yourself some cash and headache with Amazon's simpler Ring Alarm alternative.
Hey, you got your Echo in my Fire TV!
I'd understand Amazon's desire to saturate its third-generation Fire TV Cube with annoying advertising a bit more if this super-speedy streaming box, which doubles as a makeshift Echo, cost as much as a typical streaming stick. However, for $140, a price that puts it directly into either Apple TV 4K or Nvidia Shield TV territory, Amazon's advertising-drenched UI feels a bit too overpriced.
A 2K spotlight camera that won't break the bank
If upping your home security is a priority, but money is a factor, the simplest way to get started is to pick up an affordable outdoor security camera. Wyze is a familiar name in the security game, known for its cost-friendly and easy-to-setup smart devices. In fact, they frequently top our best outdoor security cameras list.
The fifth-gen Dot with Clock's new display is worth an upgrade
Third verse, same as the first: Amazon's latest Echo Dot with Clock is here. Technically an upgraded version of the fifth-gen Echo Dot, the third iteration of Dot with Clock brings a few noteworthy upgrades that make it well worth its often-discounted price. (Seriously: Amazon always seems to have these on sale.)
Check on your deliveries from wherever you are without breaking the bank
When we talk about smart home devices, we usually think of speakers, bulbs, and plugs. However, smart cameras and video doorbells are not only a great way to keep your home safe, but they can also bring an extra layer of automation to your life. The Blink Video Doorbell is one of the most affordable options available on the market, with similar features to some more expensive rivals, including motion detection, night vision, video recording, and automation.
All that Matters is tomorrow
Smart home gadgets are in a weird spot right now. Matter is finally available for manufacturers, but it's a waiting game for consumers. Only a handful of devices work as controllers right now, with updates coming for more existing products throughout the next year. Unfortunately, plenty of gadgets at your local Best Buy will never see a Matter update, rendering them difficult to recommend.
Light up your yard and keep it safe with a single product
The Ring brand, as its name suggests, became popular thanks to its video doorbell products. However, the company has been making a name for itself when it comes to home security products as well. Indeed, Ring makes some of the best outdoor security cameras and alarm systems, including the Stick Up Cam and Alarm.
The ultimate robot vacuum and mop combo
Robot vacuums are supposed to help you save time and effort by automatically cleaning your floors. Sadly, even some of the best ones require extensive maintenance and care, which defeats the purpose of automation. Also, robot vacuums must feature precise navigation, as some struggle to navigate around shoes, cables, and other objects. These particular reasons made me give up on robot vacuums last year.
Google Assistant or Alexa in the backyard
The plainly named Bose Portable Smart Speaker is an interesting device. If you couldn’t guess, the $399 unit offers all the benefits of a quality smart speaker with your choice of Alexa or Google Assistant. It also includes a built-in battery that lets you move the speaker from room to room and beyond without a power outlet. Its reliance on Wi-Fi for smart features does rain on the portable parade somewhat, but if you’ve got a niche it can fill, the Bose Portable Smart Speaker is a delight — albeit a pricey one.
Don't break the bank with expensive alarms when Ring's got you covered!
A home is one of the most precious and intimate places someone has, and protecting it is essential. And while traditional security systems are expensive, invasive, and often require professional and costly installation, things have evolved thanks to the latest smart home security systems.
Keep your deliveries safe — but for a high price
Diving into the world of smart home accessories — beyond your usual lineup of smart speakers or displays — is an exciting, costly proposition that can involve modifying your home to accommodate your new gadgets. It's not enough to just buy a bunch of hubs, bulbs, and cameras from your local Best Buy. They have to work together with whatever ecosystem you've found yourself in, even as Matter finally arrives to put an end to our long smart home nightmare.
High-end smart mood lighting
Philips Hue products have a reputation for being pricier than the competition, but there's a reason for that: they're some of the best smart lights out there, with a fully featured app and a huge (and growing) ecosystem of lights to choose from. At $330, the Signe floor lamp is one of Hue's most premium offerings, and it's not an easy sell on utility alone. But if you've got the cash and you're all about Hue, it'll be a great addition to your smart home.
You shouldn't have to choose between beauty and brains
Setting fitness targets and defining a new, healthier routine isn’t too hard. What’s more demanding is staying on top of these goals and making sure you stick to your new lifestyle in the long run. Thankfully, there are different ways you can ensure you’re following your new objectives with the help of dedicated health and fitness apps and smart fitness trackers.
The new Chromecast is an economical way to get Netflix on your 1080p TV
The first Chromecast, launched way back in 2013, was a novel, dirt-cheap way to get your streaming content onto your TV. Subsequent Chromecast iterations have largely stuck to that ethos, but none have been able to match the original’s accessible $35 price point — that is, until the Chromecast with Google TV (HD).
Pristine clean floors with little effort
Robot vacuums are a simple way to keep your floors clean while requiring minimal attention and maintenance, as long as they work as expected. Unfortunately, many of them underperform, but high-performing ones such as the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra can cost a thousand dollars or more!