We love a bit of home automation and tech as well as the added bonus of convenience it brings. In addition to our Philips Hue set up, I’m giving the TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Plug a try.
As we go away a lot, it is handy to have some kind of lighting set-up going on. This means that you have the lights going on and off mimicking the presence of someone in the home. Along with our Philips Hue, we like to have some additional lights for both everyday purpose as well as when we are away.
TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Plug
With winter rolling in pretty quickly (sun is setting at least a minute earlier each day!) From the outset, these seem like a great way to get started in home automation. The instructions look simple, they use your existing lights and you can also use the app as a remote control. Oh and it connects with your Alexa and Google Home.
Setting it up
The first thing you need to do is to download the TP-Link Kasa App onto your smart phone (both iOS and Android) Then create an account. This took me just a few minutes. I was then ready to get my plug set up.
Bearing in mind that I am a very techy person and have set up all manner of home automation systems and networked entire offices and servers etc. I have a good grasp on all things tech. However. There is always something that is sent to try us. The TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Plug, might just be that thing for me. At least it has been today while setting it up.
I decided to set up the app on both my Android phone and my iPhone as there can sometimes be some big differences in usability. The first thing that I noticed was how long it took to download on Android! I had filmed half of my video by the time it had actually completed. And when I logged in, I had to re-set up the device and as such have left it for the time being.
I really like the look and sound of the TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Plug. It seems like a great starter for home automation as it uses your own appliances etc and is reasonably priced at around £25. However simple the instructions came across, they actual set-up has been a bit of a faff. And rather slow too. I am yet to try the Android app for the sole reason that I have to set everything up again – even though I have a verified account.
I assumed that like, Alexa and Hue, it would be sen on each device logged into the account.
The actual plug itself looks nice as does the app. I am not one to review on the fly, so I am going to give the plug a try this week and will update this post with the results.
After a few days of use
So, I have been using the plug for a few days and it has redeemed itself. It works to time, coming on and going off when I have set it to. But I am still experiencing ‘outages’ from the connection when using the app. This, is the bit that I find frustrating being that my Hue has only had the odd blip in the whole two years we have had it. I suppose the final question is whether I would recommend it?
Here’s the thing. If you are looking for something simple that you can set up and go away then yes. All issues with connection aside, it does what it needs to do. If you are thinking of going further with your automated lighting i.e. in multiple rooms then I would say find an alternative.
All in all, it is a nifty bit of kit and I’ll be persevering with mine as a replacement for my analogue one in the one room that doesn’t have Hue.
Do you use home automation systems? Which is your favourite? Would you like me to post more about them?
Let me know in the comments below 🙂
Disclosure: I received the products as a gift from Maplins for review. All comments and opinions are honest and my own.