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March 8, 2017

7 IoT smart devices to save money in your home

IoT smart devices are exploding in popularity, here's a look at a couple that could save you money.

By Joe Clark

Smart Devices have gained a rapid foothold in every day life. Their ability to interface with networks in the IoT space has allowed us to control almost every aspect of our home from the glass of our smartphones. The added efficiency afforded by these devices means that we’re free to spend time our elsewhere, but time isn’t the only thing IoT solutions can save. Numerous IoT applications also have the power to help save your hard earned money.

Gartner estimates that by 2020, there will be over 12 billion smart devices installed by consumers, four times the present amount. Across both the consumer and business markets there will be 20 billion devices giving the market surrounding IoT devices a valuation of almost 3 trillion dollars. The scale of this coming change means that if even a few pounds could be saved by each person per year, the grand total is nothing to scoff at.

IoT devices come in all shapes and sizes and offer a range of purposes including controlling our utilities or helping to order our shopping, all of these benefits do add up. If you fancy saving a little bit of time and money then check out this list of the best IoT smart devices designed to save your cash!


1. Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller

IoT devices

The Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller, is a fairly self explanatory solution, as the name suggests the device allows you to control your sprinkler system in a much more intelligent and effective way.

The device replaces a traditional sprinkler controller and allows you connect to the WiFi. Using a free app on either iOS or Android you can change a multitude of settings to ensure the water usage in your garden is not wasted and performs to optimise your garden.

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Using the App you can add details such as soil type, sun exposure, and a calendar schedule. The system is also capable of gathering weather reports from local stations to ensure you aren’t watering when it’s raining. Rachio is a smart way to helpyou easily cut down on utility bills and make your garden look better in the process.

The Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller is available from £220.


2. Big Ass Fans

IoT devices

The wonderfully named Big Ass Fans from Haiku Home, are some pretty big fans for both home and industrial use. Not only are the fans almost silent, but according to Energy Star, which helps to identify and promote energy solutions,  they are also incredibly efficient. Currently Big Ass Fans occupy the top 19 spots of Energy Star’s list of the most efficient fans, exceeding Energy Star’s requirements by 1,200%.

Big Ass Fans are equipped with a remote and a wall slider to help you set the conditions you want, which can also be done from an app. Impressively, the fans are compatible with existing options such as Amazon Alexa, and several other leading smart thermostats.

Whilst the fans are pretty expensive, its best too look at them as an investment in reducing energy consumption whilst simultaneously upgrading comfort.

Big Ass Fans are available from £810.


3. Philips Hue White Dimming Bulb

IoT devices

The Philips Hue White Dimming Bulb allows you to link up to 50 light bulbs to your tablet or smartphone through a connection with it’s smart hub, the Hue Bridge.

The bulbs work much the same way as any other light bulb, screw it in and watch it go. The main difference with the Pihlips Hue is that you can get as complicated as you want with it, the hub allows you programme the lights in your home to come on at certain times, gradually light up over time, or turn off to ensure you get to sleep on time.

The dimming version also comes with a wall dimmer and the LED smart technology ensures that you’ll not only save money but better lighting is proven to help better your mood.

The Philips Hue starter kit is available from £99, any additional bulbs will cost £15


4. Quirky + GE Aros Smart Window Air Conditioner

Smart Devices

The Smart Window Air Conditioner from Quriky and GE Aros, is a true innovation in the otherwise fairly standard air conditioner market. The device uses smart technology to gather information on your utility budget, your location, and your schedule to create an effective plan to manage the temperature in your home and reduce your spending.

The device uses the Wink app so you can manage your settings from anywhere and anytime making it an extremely convenient addition to any home.

One of the main problems with the device is that it lacks a dedicated remote control of its own, meaning you’ll have to reach for your smartphone every time you want to adjust the temperature. It’s not exactly a deal breaker but certainly something to take into consideration.

The Quirky + GE Aros Smart Window Air Conditioner is available from £244.


5. Belkin WeMo Switch

IoT devices

The Belkin WeMo Switch is a simple power saving device that allows you to remotely turn off any device, fulfilling a role that is a concern for many. The device plugs into any standard AC outlet and acts as safeguard for anything you then plug into the device this then allows you to switch off  and control the electrical supply remotely.

The WeMo switch connects to WiFi and using an app allows users to turn off outlets for selected devices to ensure you’re not wasting any unneccesary electricity. The options afforded by the device include the ability to schedule the power supply to certain devices and even automate the system to switch off when a particular device reaches a certain limit for that day.

The app has a reputation for being quite difficult to use, but once you get to grips with it, it’s possible to shave huge savings off of utility bills.

The Belkin WeMo Switch is available from £40.


6. Ecobee3 Smarter WiFi thermostat

Smart devices

The Ecobee3 Smarter WiFi thermostat is an intuitive way to manage the heating and temperature of your home to ensure that you aren’t throwing your pennies away unnecessarily.

The device is fully integrated with Amazon Alexa and is even capable of recognising whether a room is occupied or empty, adjusting it’s temperatures accordingly. Ecobee3 states that it’s product can save homeowners an average of 23% on their energy bills.

However, the problem is that to truly maximise the effect of the Ecobee3, you’ll have to install several additional sensors on top of the thermostat itself. This means that the option can get fairly expensive compared to its competitors.

The Ecobee3 Smarter WiFi thermostat is available from £200 or, for the Lite version, £160.


7. Nest Learning Thermostat

IoT devices

The Nest Learning Thermostat is pretty much the gold standard when it comes to smart utility management in the home. This third generation device comes with all the expected features such as auto scheduling and remote control in one easy to use bundle.

The system works with 95% of 24v heating operations and Amazon Alexa. Nest believes that it’s device saves homeowners an average of 11% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills per year. In under just two years the device will have paid for itself and saved you a pretty penny.

Whilst the savings may not be as high as other models, it’s ability to integrate with much larger volume of homes means that it’s basically a necessity for anyone serious about saving power in this day and age.

The Nest Learning Thermostat is available from £180.

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