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Top Home Automation Products of 2016

 •  5 minutes read

Top Home Automation Products of 2016

When you’re looking for automated home products, you’ll quickly discover that the possibilities are endless. In fact, the choices can be downright overwhelming.

To dismiss that sense of being overwhelmed, be smart and tactical while shopping. Generally, you want products that are easy to use and compatible with each other. You want them to have the newest technology and excellent technical and customer support.

In addition, keep the following in mind:

  • The best home automation software lets you create custom programs that are easily accessible and useable so you can perform a variety of actions
  • Mobile access lets you monitor and control your home when you’re away
  • Voice control is available with best-in-class products
  • Some smart home products give you the option to subscribe to a monitoring service
  • Although some home automation products and systems require professional installation, a growing number are Do-It-Yourself (DIY)

At Scout Alarm, we reviewed a number of home automation products. Here are our top 10 products for 2016, in no particular order:

1. Amazon Echo Amazon Echo is a voice-controlled system that is hands-free and always on. You can use it to obtain information, get answers to questions, play music, read the news, check the weather, and much more. You can also use Echo to perform simple tasks such as switching on lamps or dimming the lights. All you have to do is ask. The Echo has an easy setup that connects to your home Wi-Fi network. No monthly fees. Estimated cost: $179

2. Nest Protect Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm

The Nest Protect Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm is less annoying than most other alarms. It speaks with a human voice, letting you know where the smoke is or when carbon monoxide levels are rising. Available in both battery operated and wired models. Estimated cost: Wired: $99, Battery-operated: $370

3. LIFX Color 1000 A19 Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb

With the LIFX Color 1000 A19 is a wi-fi smart LED bulb you never have to come home to a dark house again. It allows you to choose between 16 million colors and 1,000 shades of whites in a single bulb. You can control lights at home or away, schedule to turn lights on and off, set alarms, and more. Setup is easy. With LIFX, the technology is built right into each bulb, so no hub or starter kit is required. Compatible with Amazon Echo. Estimated cost: $59

4. SmartThings Know and Control Your Home Kit

With the SmartThings Know and Control Your Home Kit, you can transform your smartphone into a remote control. This kit allows you to monitor your lights, locks, temperature, and more. It provides early warnings about smoke and carbon monoxide. You will also receive notifications when people, pets, and cars come and go. With the SmartThings Know and Control Your Home Kit, you will gain peace of mind knowing you have secured your home and protected your family and property. No monthly fees or contracts. Estimated cost: $330

5. Nest Cam Pro Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera

This cloud-based wi-fi video monitoring service offers many features and is an Amazon Best Seller in Surveillance and Security Cameras. It has amazing viewing capabilities with 130 degrees diagonal, plus up to 8x zoom, and night vision. It also has the latest optics technology and updated image sensors that provide sharp video recordings (optional) that you can save and share. Easy, fast setup with the option to pay for video storage if you want it. Estimated cost: $219

6. August Smart Lock

With August Smart Lock, you control access to your home from a compatible iOS or Android smartphone. August Smart Lock can automatically lock your door when you leave and automatically open your door when you return. August Smart Lock is powered by four AA batteries so it’s always on. Easy DIY Retrofit Install, which replaces the interior portion of compatible deadbolts in about ten minutes, leaving exterior hardware unchanged. Estimated cost: $169

7. Ring Wi-Fi Enabled Video Doorbell

With the Ring Video Doorbell, you can answer your door from anywhere by using your smartphone. This doorbell has an HD camera with night vision, so you can see and speak with visitors whether you are at home or elsewhere. Optional cloud recording captures every activity detected by the Ring Video Doorbell motion sensors. The DYI product can be installed in minutes. If using a battery, you can install the doorbell anywhere. Optionally, you can connect it to the existing doorbell wiring. Lifetime purchase protection. Estimated cost: $199

8. Ecobee3 Smarter Wi-Fi Thermostat with Remote Sensor

Ecobee3’s remote sensors can detect temperature and occupancy in order to deliver the right temperature to the rooms that matter most to you and your family. The sensors also know when a room is empty, and they automatically deprioritize those rooms for increased energy savings. You can customize the system by adding up to 32 sensors, which can help address hot and cold spots in your home. With the Ecobee3 Smarter Wi-Fi Thermostat, you can save an average of 23 percent on your heating and cooling bills. No monthly fees. Estimated cost: $239

9. Kwikset Kevo Smart Lock with Keyless Bluetooth Touch to Open

Are you tired of losing your keys? By using the Kevo Bluetooth Electronic Lock, your smartphone becomes your key. You can quickly enter your home simply by touching the lock while your phone is in your pocket or purse. If you don’t have a smartphone, you can use the FOB. You can also share eKeys via your smartphone or additional FOBs, giving friends, family and employees access monitored by you. Estimated cost: $189

10. Chamberlain MYQ-G0201 MyQ - Garage Door Opener

With MyQ Garage, you can monitor, open and close your garage door from anywhere with your smartphone. You’ll also receive alerts any time your garage door opens, so you’ll know when your children are home from school. This item works with most major brands of garage door openers that were made after 1993. MyQ Garage takes only about 30 minutes to install, and there is no monthly service charge. Includes: Wi-fi hub, power cord, mounting bracket, door sensor, and instructions for free app download. Estimated cost: $113