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One of the first pieces of smart home tech I checked out was a smart plug. That was nearly a decade ago. I desperately wanted a smart LED light bulb of some kind, but seeing that they were astronomically expensive at the time, the next best thing was a smart plug to satisfy my clap-on, clap-off convenience.
Even though the Amazon Smart Plug has been out since 2018, it’s still one of those simple gadgets that can help anyone start their smart home journey. But given all the options out there, is it still worth it? Find out in our Amazon smart plug review below.
- Size: 3.2 x 1.5 x 2.2-inches
- Weight: 3.1 ounces
- Input: 120VAC, 60Hz 15A
- Max Output: 15A Max
Included in the Box
- Amazon single-socket 3-prong WiFi plug
- Quick Start Guide
Setup And Installation
The Amazon Smart Plug is ‘certified for humans.’ Meaning, it’s easy to set up and shouldn’t be a complicated process. That’s an accurate description because I got it connected in under five minutes.
After running the Alexa app and scanning the QR code on the back of the plug, my smartphone automatically detected it. From there, it was just running through a few more prompts in the app before it was completed. If only more gadgets were certified for humans.
Much like any other smart plug you might come across, there’s nothing aesthetically that differentiates the Amazon Smart Plug’s design. It’s a cookie-cutter look that I’m familiar with, but I wish it were slimmer in size to better fit cramped areas.
One end plugs to an existing three-pronged outlet, while the other is ready to accept whatever you want to be plugged into it. There’s a button on the side that essentially acts as the unit’s power button. I can’t expect much from smart plug designs, so I can’t knock Amazon’s decision to stick with a generic design. Also, it’s worth mentioning is that it’s not meant to be used outdoors.
Before I dive into what it can do, just know that it’s only compatible with Alexa. Meaning, you can’t ask Siri or Google Assistant to turn it on/off. That shouldn’t be a surprise given that we’re dealing with Alexa here, but you can still use the Alexa app for either Android and iOS to access it.
Functionally, it’s your standard smart plug that can remotely turn on/off whatever’s connected to it through the app. Most users will adore voice control, which comes in handy in situations like bedtime when you’re too lazy to get up and physically turn off the lamp in the living room. Beyond setting up routines to have it work in conjunction with other connected smart home gadgets, there’s really nothing more you can do with it.
This isn’t a bad thing per se, since it has one specific purpose and can’t be complicated by other things. But on the other, I crave some of the power monitoring functionality that other smart plugs offer. That way, I stay informed about the power consumption of my connected devices at home.
Consumers love simplicity. That’s the beauty of the Amazon Smart Plug since its function can’t be complicated by other things. However, it’s playing in a crowded field filled with cheaper, newer options that are functionally superior. So what does that mean for our overall Amazon smart plug review? Well, it’s a solid option but nothing shocking or outstanding. If you don’t want to leave the Amazon ecosystem, this one makes sense. If you’re keen to look elsewhere, we’d recommend dipping below the final tally of our Amazon smart plug review and checking out some alternatives.
So Should You Buy it?
Yes, but only if you’re a religious Alexa user.
- Painless setup
- It’s actually pricier than other options
How Long Will It Last?
The all-plastic construction feels decent and it’s on par with the quality of other smart plugs I’ve tested. Since it’s not going anywhere, the only thing you need to be mindful about is not exceeding its power load. Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend connecting a power strip to this smart plug. Amazon throws in a one-year limited warranty with the purchase that covers defects.
What Are Some of the Alternatives?
Today’s smart plugs can do much more than simply making dumb appliances smart. Even better, they’ve become so popular and widely used that prices have dramatically come down.
Kasa Smart Plug
If value is what you’re after, then you’ll want to look at the Kasa Smart Plug. Not only is a four-pack the same price as a single Amazon Smart Plug, but it supports Google Assistant.
For Apple’s HomeKit users, the Eve Energy is worth a look because of its built-in power meter that can estimate the cost of running your connected device.
GHome Smart Power Strip
Do you need more than a single outlet? The GHome Smart Power Strip has the complete package, including three outlets and three USB ports, which can all be controlled remotely.