Philips struck an early stake in the smart home ecosystem with its Hue bulbs – some of the best smart lights that money can buy. Now the company is looking to expand into smart plugs, meaning you’ll be able to control just about anything with your phone. Or your voice if you have an Amazon Echo or Google Home and want to feel like some kind of magical deity, controlling your home with a booming baritone.
Dutch site iCulture reports that the company’s smart plug will go for £29 and let you flick on and off the power remotely to devices. That means the limit is broadly your imagination, but if you’re looking for inspiration, most people use them to turn on lamps, fans, air filters and humidifiers.
The site reports that the smart plug will let you use schedules, timers and sensors to control your smart plug. The last of these is significant: it means you can have a lamp automatically turn on when a door sensor is triggered, for example, or have a coffee machine spring into life when you open a cupboard door to grab a mug. And to think that getting coffee used to involve a round trip to Ethiopia: we’ve truly come a long way from the 10th century.
Smart plugs aren’t exactly new, and if you can’t wait for Philips to make this official, there’s already a vast array of products available from the likes of Amazon, Belkin and Lenovo. But with Philips Hue bulbs already illuminating thousands of homes around the UK, there’s something to be said about sticking to the same brand for everything.