The Christmas Guide to Smart Home Devices for First Time Users
Smart home gifts for everyone on your holiday list. Surprise your loved ones with these futuristic smart home automation products which will increase their quality of life and decrease their electrical bill.
As Christmas approaches, the thoughts invariably turn to gift suggestions. With plenty of exciting electronic devices available, now is a great time to get your friends and relatives on board with smart home technology.
Before you buy, first try to identify any problems they may have. What would your friends want a device to do? If they complain about energy bills, then the solution is obvious.
Next, choose an item that works with their existing ecosystem. If they’re an Apple user, choose devices that work with Siri and HomeKit.
Finally, have fun! Smart home technology solves problems, but it’s also simple to set up and enjoy.
Let’s see what you could buy first time users for Christmas.
Smart Technology is a Whizz at Entertainment
Choosing a fun device is a great place to start for first time users.
Perhaps the most famous smart home device, the Amazon Echo family now features a range of devices. Order an Uber, play favorite radio stations, check travel times, or even ask for news updates. If your budget is tight, try the Amazon Echo Dot. If your friend prefers devices with screens, try the new Echo Show.
Your loved one can install the SURE Universal remote app and activate Alexa so they can control their devices from a single interface on their smartphone.
If your friend is a diehard Google user, try the Google Home instead. Ask questions, play music, get reminders and travel alerts, or stream Netflix through the TV. All using voice commands.
The Google Home also acts as a smart home hub. Your friends can buy devices by WeMo, Nest, or Philips as part of their new smart home.
With Roku, you have a wide range of streaming devices to choose from. The Roku Streaming Stick offers plenty of features for a small device and it’s a great way to get into smart technology. Combine the Stick with the SURE Universal Remote to control what’s on-screen from your smartphone.
Security for Your Loved Ones
Smart home technology offers a plethora of devices to keep your loved ones safe. Which ones make great Christmas gifts?
5 million American homes have no smoke alarms. Combat that terrifying statistic by buying your loved ones a Nest Protect. It identifies both smoke and carbon monoxide, sending alerts to a phone. The battery-powered version will tell you when to replace the battery.
Even better, it acts like a nightlight in the dark. Perfect for children who don’t like pure darkness in their house at night.
WeMo Mini Switch
It might seem strange to put a smart power outlet under security, but the WeMo Mini Smart Plug will provide peace of mind for the lucky recipient. We’ve all left the house and been struck by the thought we forgot to turn off an appliance. Your friend or relative can turn off their outlets from their smartphone with no need to go home to check!
It also pairs with the Nest Thermostat to turn devices on and off according to how you use your home.
Arlo by NETGEAR Security System
This small camera works both indoors and outdoors. It even boasts a night vision mode. Your loved ones can rest easy knowing the Arlo only records when it detects movement.
Your friend can even view a live video stream when they’re away from home – perfect if they want to know what the cat gets up to during the day.
These devices aren’t as flash as an Amazon Echo, but they’re a great place to start when your friends are building their smart home.
Philips Hue Smart Bulbs
Your loved ones can control the bulbs remotely so they don’t have to come home to a dark house. Philips Hue bulbs work with different standards so your friends can build whichever smart home eco-system they want. The bulbs offer a range of 16 million colors for endless customization.
Friends can set automated timers, or use the lights to mimic sunrise as they turn on for a more natural way to wake up.
Nest Learning Smart Thermostat
What could be better as a Christmas gift than the opportunity to save money on energy bills? The Nest Learning Thermostat learns how families use the home. It monitors the temperature according to what it learns.
The system sends monthly email summaries to make usage clear. Other options with the Plus upgrade mean your loved ones can manage a range of automations from this single device.
Whichever device you choose, remember to help your loved ones install the SURE Universal Remote app. They’ll love controlling their new devices from their smartphone.
Over to you – which devices will you be giving this year?