The Internet of Things (#IoTs) is here to stay and is transforming the way we organize our lives. If you haven’t kept abreast of the news, you’ll be surprised by the range of IoT devices and impressed by the advancements in AI and all the spaces that the best IoT devices can inhabit.
We have picked out the 10 best IoT devices for you to start dreaming about better smart home technology. The level of connectedness you experience in your life will receive a turbo boost even if you only use a couple of these very tempting IoT devices we have listed here in our latest top 10 lists.
10 Best IoT Devices You Should Know
What Exactly is an IoT device?
A normal device transforms into an IoT smart device when the following happens:
- The device is sufficient enough for connecting to the Internet
- The device has integrated technology such as sensors, functional software, and some inbuilt technology that supports network connections and actuators
One example of a smart IoT device is the wristwatch. Conventional watches are used to provide the time and date only. Smartwatches, by contrast, allow users to see such things as heartbeat rate, the number of steps walked, and calorie count.
There is a rapid increase in the number of people using IoT products every day, and this upward trend is set to continue.
At a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.53% over the next five years, the global IoT market is set to be worth USD 1,386.06 billion by 2026. Positive growth in this market is fuelled by the development of wireless networking technologies, advanced data analytics, more and more systems using cloud platforms, and the reduced cost of connected devices.
When you mention the best IoT devices, most people equate that with the big-brand speakers, such as Alexa or Google Home, that are also platforms, since the voice assistant function serves as a gateway to a whole smart ecosystem. A smart ecosystem means that it is not a question of a single device being connected to the internet to control things like the lights and the house alarm.
Rather, a smart ecosystem connects a series of devices, such as your laptop, mobile, and technology services. What can these IoT devices do for you and what are they compatible with? Those are the benchmark questions we used when coming up with our list of best IoT devices. You’ll be spoilt for choice.
1. Sonos One
Sonos One is a powerful smart speaker with built-in voice control that is widely regarded by those in the know as the best in its class. It connects to Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple AirPlay 2, or the Sons app, boasting great sound quality and stable multi-room audio. The speaker is also humidity-resistant so that you can even put it in the bathroom.
That Sonos One connects to over 100 audio streaming services underscores your music freedom. If you’re the home theater type, you’ll be glad to hear that this marvelous little speak connects to the larger speakers and the TV soundbar by Sonos.
Sonos One’s incontrovertible advantage is its smart ecosystem compatibility. When you take it out of the box, it is Alexa-enabled, but it supports Airplay 2 and Google Assistant as well.
2. Google Home Voice Controller
Google Home Voice Controller is an IoT device that uses Google Assistant and your voice to control lights, thermostats, timers, and alarms. Controlling the TV and speakers entails very little effort.
Its three primary functions are providing information using Google Search, home control, and media playback. The home control functions are limited to a few devices that control light and temperature. What Google Home does have is an “if this then that” service, which is a trigger and command set.
You set this up manually and customize the trigger voice command, such as “turn on the sprinkler.”
The Google Home Voice Controller shines in the media playback department. Any app on your phone that supports Google Chrome cast can stream to Google Home and the voice controller becomes the speaker. Google Home readily obeys commands such as play video on the TV, play Spotify on the TV, or play some music in the living room.
One downside is that the number of services controlled from Google Home is currently limited to only five:
- YouTube Music
- Google Play Music
Google Home does not support Google Play Movies or movies from Netflix. If you have several Google Home Voice Controllers you can place them in different rooms and set them up so that they will play the same music in all the rooms that you specify.
You use the Google Home app to manage the services and the devices and set your preferences, but you do not use it to control individual devices from it. One reviewer has pointed out that if you use Voice Assistance and issue a command to the Voice Controller in the proximity of your mobile phone, the Google Home app will take precedence. This can be annoying.
3. Amazon Echo Plus Voice Controller
This is a popular and reliable device, which makes it mystifying why Amazon is going to discontinue the Echo range. Amazon Echo is set apart from other devices in that it will only take commands from your voice. It is as if it uses your voice as a password.
The Amazon Echo Plus Voice Controller is a voice-controlled device that uses the Alexa voice service. The smart premium loudspeaker delivers omnidirectional (360-degree) audio. Its built-in smart hub can directly set up compatible Zigbee- enabled smart home devices. This is a huge advantage over its nearest competitor, Google Home.
Echo Plus is fine-tuned too: its seven microphones, beam-forming technology, and the latest in noise cancellation tech, it can hear your voice from any direction even in noisy environments – like when you are playing music on that same device.
It plays songs, does phone calls, sets alarms and timers. It will provide information when you ask questions, give you weather reports, manage your shopping lists and to-do lists and manage certain household appliances and plugs.
4. Lenovo ThinkCentre M75n IoT
If you need a seamless and secure way to collect, store, and process data from IoT devices, including sensors and cameras, then consider the Lenovo ThinkCentre M75n IoT. This is an industrial-grade PC that gives real-time tracking and insights. It has AMD Athlon 3000 Series mobile processors with Radeon Graphics.
ThinkShield, a security-by-design approach, gives several layers of protection to business-critical data and devices and is incorporated in all ThinkCentre products.
With all the new tech gadgets, it’s worth remembering that you should not neglect to upgrade your desktop computer. This is true if you are a solopreneur, or have recently taken the decision to work full time from the comfort of your smart home.
If you’re in it for the long haul and work full time from home. Check the deals page for proof that All-in-One computers and tower desktops still have a place in our busy, connected lives. Remember that Lenovo is famous for its easy, tool-free upgrades for business and gaming towers.
Best IoT Devices
Some of the best IoT devices are not so clearly related to computing, but they do help us in uncountable ways. Lesser-known devices also pack a punch.
5. August Smart Lock
The August Smart Lock enables users to manage their doors from any location. This thief deterrent is a hassle-free and reliable security IoT device. It features unlimited digital keys and you get status updates telling your if your door is properly closed or not, as well as information about everyone who has entered and exited the door.
Users appreciate the auto-unlock feature and as soon as the device senses your approach. Compatible with most single-cylinder deadbolts, installation is easy too. You can add voice control by combining it with an Alexa device.
6. Kuri Mobile Robot
Some of the best IoT devices are fun. The Kuri Mobile Robot is becoming popular as a nice-to-have, especially with young children around the house.
It is capacitive touch-sensitive and comes with an integrated mapping sensor and drives. The interactive device’s HD camera takes photos of daily life.
7. Mobile IoT: Flow Air Pollution Monitor by Plume Labs
With WiFi everywhere, it is no surprise that IoT devices can be mobile outside of the home too. Flow tracks your personal air quality and can be attached to your gym bag with its vegan leather strap.
The steel body of the sensor has capacitive touch so that you can check the air quality wherever you are. The app’s map will help you navigate cleaner routes through the city, or help you with the decision to open or close your city apartment windows.
8. Philips Hue Bulbs and Lighting System
The quality of light, like that of air, is central to our sense of well-being. That accounts for the popularity of Philips Hue, an IoT way to control your light schedules, and a dimming function to create ambiance even when you’re away from home. This hi-tech comfort device enables you to synchronize ambiance settings with the playing of music or the start of a movie.
9. Logitech Harmony Universal Remote
That old saying about the person with the remote control is the boss is now true. The Logitech Harmony Universal Remote is a great smart device for daily use. With one device, you can control your house lighting, house media, and other smarter devices from a remote location.
The hub (the real controlling device here) can accommodate functions for up to eight regular remote controls, and it supports over 5000 brands. Set-up is a simple online process.
10. NETGEAR Orbi Ultra-Performance Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi System
Wi-Fi dead zones and buffering just don’t happen with the NETGEAR Orbi Ultra-Performance Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi System. It works with your existing ISP (internet service provider) and maintains your whole-home mesh Wi-Fi system. The real game-changer is that even if many Wi-Fi devices are in use at the same time, you’ll still have good Wi-Fi speed.
Better IoT, Better Life
By hooking up with better IoT devices your life can indeed run more smoothly. The beauty of the best IoT devices is that they are user-friendly. These time-saving devices are designed with the non-tech person in mind. If you haven’t yet made the move to make your home a smart one, we think that you should.
While you’re thinking about it, feel free to read our other articles on the advancement of practical technology on our site.