A smart plug is a device that you can plug into any wall outlet in your home. Once it’s plugged in, voilà! You have a smart outlet!
What makes it smart is a connection to a mobile app that lets you control the outlet from your phone. Once the outlet is smart, any appliance you plug into it becomes smart. This means that you can turn off a lamp or start the slow cooker with a swipe of your finger—no matter where you are.
And if you don’t even want to do that much work, just set up a schedule, and let the devices connected to your smart plug take care of themselves.
To keep it simple, here are the only things you really need to know:
- Smart plugs are also known as smart outlets or smart switches.
- You don’t need to do anything mechanical to use a smart plug.
- Smart plugs work in any standard outlet.
- Devices you plug into a smart outlet don’t have to be smart.
- Smart plugs use apps for remote control and scheduling.
- You can pick up a smart plug for under $30.
- Smart plugs (and smart outlets) can be compatible with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, Z-Wave, Zigbee, and more smart home gadgets.