It seems each summer has become more brutal than the last, as the heat seemingly continues to get worse and worse with little relief in sight. Last year, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that July 2019 was the hottest month ever — ever! — on earth. And based on the grim trajectory of world events in 2020, it seems likely we’re going to suffer through more record-breaking heat this summer. Without a modern smart air conditioner, an unbearable time of year can become downright uninhabitable if your current AC unit isn’t up to par. The best smart air conditioners not only help cool down your home or apartment, but they also make it possible to optimize your energy usage and reduce heating and cooling costs.
Just like most of our other modern-day appliances, HVAC manufacturers have started to incorporate smart technology into air conditioning units as well. Advances in Bluetooth and mobile apps have made it so that you’re just a tap away from being able to have full control over every aspect of your cooling experience, no matter where you are, making it even easier to cool down and relax once you’re out of the heat. Whether you’re in the market for a brand new unit or are just ready for an upgrade, we’ve rounded up the best smart air conditioners for you, below.
Pair them with your phone (to, say, cool down the house before you come home from work each day) or turn on the unit’s smart settings to make sure you’re cool and comfortable when you’re home, and saving energy when you’re not.
1. Kenmore Smart Air Conditioner
BEST WINDOW UNIT
For a large portion of major US cities, any air conditioner that has enough power to cool 450 square feet will more than likely cool your primary living space, which is why this smart window unit from Kenmore is a great solution for those in need of a powerful window unit. While it’s not quite as feature-rich as some of the other offerings we’ll cover on this list, it does have enough smart functionality to likely be a game-changer for many; the Kenmore mobile app allows for remote control on the unit, whether it’s while you’re on the go or from the comfort of your bed (because who wants to get up to fuss with an A/C unit?)
It’s also just a quick setup from being fully Amazon Alexa-ready, which means you can then connect it to other Alexa-enabled devices for further customized control. With three cooling and fan speeds, it’s more than enough power to keep you cool on even the most brutal of warm days.
2. Sensibo Sky Smart Air Conditioner Controller
Okay, this is a bit of a cheat, but it’s a great one. With Sensibo’s smart controller, you’re just a few steps away from converting your existing air conditioner into a smart air conditioner. Just plug in the Sensibo sensor into a nearby outlet and then pair it with your unit’s infrared sensor. The app will walk you through the rest of the quick setup process and then you’ll officially be good to go. From there, you’ll be able to set cooling schedules, use voice commands (it’ll work with either Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant), or even set up location-based temperature adjustments. It’s a great solution for those that want a smart unit without having to pay to fully upgrade.
3. Rollicool Alexa-Enabled Smart Air Conditioner
BEST PORTABLE AC UNIT
If you’re looking for a total one-stop-shop solution for not only your cooling needs but also heating and dehumidifying, this portable air conditioner from RolliCool is the ticket. Along with that added functionality, you can also use RolliCool’s app to make temperature adjustments or use the built-in Amazon Alexa functionality for voice control. With coverage for up to 700 square feet, it’s a fantastic all-in-one solution that’s bound to get lots of love, all year long.
4. Emerson Quiet Kool Emerson SMART Portable Air Conditioner
There are a lot of great portable air conditioners that can keep your bedroom or small apartment cool. Most of the top-rated models also have remote controls and timers that let you program your heating and cooling schedule to your needs. However, very few portable AC units will actually connect to your smart home system, which is why it’s worth springing for this Emerson Quiet Kool model. With enough cooling power to control the climate in 450 to 500 square foot areas, you’ll be able to stop sweating and improve your quality of life. The AC unit connects to both Google Home and Alexa, making home climate control easier than ever.
5. Frigidaire Cool Connect Smart Window Air Conditioner
With its sleek looks, this looks more like a big speaker than an air conditioner. Frigidaire’s smart unit is probably the most aesthetically pleasing appliance we’ve seen in this category. The curved exterior is worthy of a 21st century product—and its feature set certainly reflects that: smart app control, integration with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, and even custom scheduling. But our favorite thing is the stylish LED display that gives you the temperature in a clear, vivid way (which is the most critical information, after all). Altogether, it feels—and acts—as if it’s something you’d see on The Jetsons. This new model is an improvement on 2019’s version, adding 2,000 more BTUs worth of power for roughly the same price as last year’s unit.
6. Emerson Quiet Kool Smart WiFi Air Conditioner
While we already featured a great two-in-one air conditioner, this version from Emerson is a dedicated window unit instead of a floor unit. Easily controlled through Emerson’s mobile app or through Amazon Alexa or Google Home, the unit provides a staggering 14,000 BTUs worth of cooling power and 10,600 BTUs of heating — which is enough to fully cool and warm a 700 square foot space. The power, however, comes with a bit of hefty price tag but it’s worth it if you’re looking to supercharge your space. If you’re looking for the best smart air conditioners that can fit in your bedroom or apartment window, this AC unit is a worthy option.
7. Midea U Inverter Window WiFi Air Conditioner
BEST FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY
The only bad thing about AC units is how much they can cost to keep running on brutally warm days, so anything that can help to save power costs is going to be especially critical. The best smart air conditioners don’t just keep you cool, they help you program a cooling schedule that saves energy — and therefore money. This is where this energy-saving unit from Midea can come in handy, as its inverter technology allows for a 35% increase in energy-saving abilities. It also manages to be significantly quieter than other units of its ilk. And, of course, it can be operated via a smartphone app or by voice control through Amazon Alexa or a Google Home device.