Best Smart Home Automation Hubs 2018

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Best Smart Home Automation Hubs 2018

Best Smart Home Automation Hubs 2018 Starting from the lights and fans to the water pumps and door locks- the advancement of technology has made it possible to control a number of gadgets in a smarter way and thus convert any ordinary house into a ‘smart home’. Smart home hubs can make it possible for you to bring all the smart home devices under a single unit. In addition to these, smart home hubs also allow you to monitor your gadgets to the cloud and provide you with a centralized remote to connect all of them together.

Not all smart home hubs are good. In fact, almost all of them have certain issues such as some confusing apps or complex installation procedures. These are the things which the house owners would definitely love to avoid. So, the best smart home hubs are those which involve relatively lesser complications. They should also have great connectivity, a good app to use and must be affordable too. Moreover, some hubs are featured with multiple devices such as smart speakers and wifi routers while others have only a handful of them.
So here are the top 7 smart home hubs of 2018:

NameCurrent Price
Etekcity 5-Channel Wireless Home Automation Remote Control
GE Z-Wave Wireless Home Automation Smart Lighting
Samsung SmartThings ADT Home Safety Expansion Kit
WeMo Light Switch
Wink Hub 2
Amazon Echo (First Generation)
Logitech Harmony Home Hub for App Control of 8 Smart Home Devices, works with Alexa 

Here’s summing up the key points with the help of which we have determined the best smart home hubs:

⦁      Compatibility: It should be compatible with the existing set-up.

⦁       Additional Features: Some smart home hubs come with additional features like voice control.

⦁       Smart Phone Apps: Many of today’s smart home hubs are featured with smart phone apps. This is another criterion to consider.

Considering all these, we have prepared a list of the top smart home hubs of the day. All these hubs belong to some of the reputed brands of the world and are characterized by certain great features. Their pros and cons have been jotted down to help you with the selection. You may go through them to decide which one will be ideal for you, based on your requirements.

Best Smart Home Automation Hubs 2018 Review

Let’s start review of each product without any further delay

1)Etekcity 5-Channel Wireless Home Automation Remote Control

 

It connects five different channels and can be installed quickly as well as easily. The devices can be turned off easily with the help of a remote. It basically turns off the sockets that are connected at the different points.

This comes in handy particularly for those people who have a tendency to forget to switch off the lights before going off to bed. Keeping the appliances on can lead to a lot of power consumption and even reduce the life span of the hub by 15%. This special feature proves to be a rescuer here and helps in increasing the life span of the device considerably. It helps in reducing the electricity bills too.

The range in line of sight is 300m and it is thus capable of working through the doors, walls and floors. It is not likely to interfere with other electronic gadgets in your home in any way and comes with a 15-month warranty from the manufacturers.

The learning function of the hub also deserves appreciation. You can use learning remotes to access a better control over it. It is possible to connect a remote with each of the outlets. It will just take a few seconds for you to do the same and in case you need to switch back to the original configuration, you can definitely do the same. This is another reason we have included it in our Best Smart Home Automation Hubs 2018 list.

Final Thoughts:

So, as you can see, the Etekcity 5-Channel Wireless Home Automation Remote Control is a great choice for those who want to get all their sockets plugged onto different remotes or want to access a better control over the various outlets. It is a durable hub too. However, the main problem with the hub lies in the fact that once you start using new remotes for it, it will become very difficult to switch back to the old state.

Pro:
  • You may easily install new remotes.
  • It is much sturdier than the others of its type
  • Batteries are easily replaceable and easily affordable too.
Cons:
  • You may be required to change the hardware configurations if you want to switch back to your old remotes.
  • You can’t expect the remote controls to work differently from one another.

Due to all the features mentioned above Etekcity 5-Channel Wireless Home Automation Remote Control is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

2)    GE Z-Wave Wireless Home Automation Smart Lighting

This is one of the best options for controlling the lights and fans in a room and uses Z-wave gateway for the purpose. It is compatible with different Z-wave hubs such as Pulse, SmartThings, Trane, Nexia, Wink, HomeSeer, Honeywell, Harmony Home Hub Extender, Smart Security, Iris, Connect and Vera. It has the ability to control multiple lights in groups.

It is capable of providing ultimate flexibility as it can be integrated with different wiring configurations such as the two-way hiring, three-way hiring and four-way hiring with the help of the GE add-on switch. It also provides a great way to control the overhead lighting from the wall. You just need to install the receptacle in the wall using the hardwired connections. This is another reason we have included it in our Best Smart Home Hubs 2018 list.

It is compatible with different kinds of bulbs such as the incandescent fluorescent, xenon and halogen ones.
Your current light switch is replaced by it and it can be easily installed using the existing wire at your home. It can be connected to a range of devices such as smartphones, PCs and tablets.

You can also be assured of the fact that the outlets will be safeguarded from dirt and debris, thanks to the weather-resistant housing. It is just the perfect arrangement for devices like plug-in fans, lamps and heaters.
You can easily control the devices, irrespective of whether you are inside or away from your home. You can also schedule events such as switching on or switching off of fans, lights and pumps during different times of the day at ease.

This hub is also the ideal one for creating lighting scenes in a customized manner for entertainment purposes. Another great feature to look for is the Ranger Extender with the help of which one can extend the range of Z-wave network and make the signal repeat up to 100 feet.

Final Thoughts:

This one can be used with z-wave gateway and is universally compatible with different lights. It is not only useful for everyday home lighting purposes but can also be used for creating lighting scenes. Though it is a bit slow in performance, it will help you to serve different purposes.

Pro:
  • It comes with a neutral wire unlike many others and thereby relives you of the hassles.
  • It can serve multiple purposes related to lights. For instance, if you have to control your garden lights, you can simply use a webcam to switch them on or off with the help of your device
  • There are changeable paddles of different colors such as white, black, ivory, brown and light almond that are sold separately to use with the hub
  • You can easily control the lighting for single or multiple switches.
  • ⦁ Its ability to create lighting scenes makes it an indispensable item for various events held during day or night.
Cons:
  • Installation is not so easy as compared to others of its type.
  • It is a bit slow in its operation.

Due to all the features mentioned above GE Z-Wave Wireless Home Automation Smart Lighting is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

3)    Samsung SmartThings ADT Home Safety Expansion Kit

 

It is a small little smart home hub that costs less as compared to the others. It comes with as many as 142 product integrations (with the probability of increase in the number in future) and is compatible with products from the brands like ecobee, Philips Hue and Amazon Echo.

One feature of this product which is worth appreciation is it has a user-friendly interface and even if you are a beginner, you will not find any difficulty in using it.
However, there is no reason to think that it is only for beginners and lacks most of the features. It helps in producing a high impact even at such an affordable cost.

There are a number of other models too, such as the Samsung Connect Home Pro AC2600 Smart Wi-Fi System and the Samsung Connect Home AC1300 Smart Wi-Fi System in the Samsung range of smart home hubs but this one seems to be the most popular of them all.

It is the best way to make your home free from Carbon Monoxide, water leakage and smoke thanks to the carbon monoxide detector, water leakage detector and smoke detector present. It then alerts the users about the same by ringing a siren alarm which is pretty loud to get you informed. You can also initiate the optional services of ADT monitoring in order to get a quick response. There are certain professional monitoring services providing you peace of mind all throughout the day that can be also be availed with this smart home hub. This is another reason we have included it in our Best Smart Home Hub 2018 list.

Another feature to admire is the battery operated design which helps in reducing the electrical bills and increases the lifespan of the hub. Moreover, the wireless mode of connection helps you to connect it to distant places such as the basement.

Final Thoughts:

If you want to convert your home into a smart home at a reduced budget, nothing can be better than Samsung SmartThings as it helps in producing the best effects at the best price.
Other features like easy installation and compatibility with other devices make it a hub that can serve the purpose of all at a reduced budget.

Pro:
  • The affordable price that it comes with makes it the best of all
  • The wireless connectivity is another great feature to look for which makes it a preferred choice among the users.
  • The detectors present help in detecting high water level, carbon monoxide level and smoke formation and thereby make your home a safe and secure place to live in.
Cons:
  • No such cons

Due to all the features mentioned above Samsung SmartThings ADT is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

4)    WeMo Light Switch

If you want to gain seamless control over your light switches, WeMo is the choice for you. You may even use it with other devices such as thermostats and ceiling fans. You will just need to install an app for the purpose.

You will also be able to set timings for the lights to be switched on. This will help you to control your lights depending on the seaon of the year. Similarly, depending on the weather conditions, you may switch on or switch off the ceiling fan as required.

It is a wifi enabled switch which makes it technically more advanced and easier to operate. You just need to download the free app available for it and can thereafter enjoy a number of amazing features: let the porche lights welcome you home when you return after a tiring day at work, let the ceiling fans help lowering the temperature by operating for a few seconds before you actually enter the room.

It is compatible with different operating softwares such as android 4.1 or iOS 8 or higher versions and is featured by an electric rating of 120V/15A/60Hz/1800W. This is another reason we have included it in our Best Smart Home Hubs 2018 list.

Another great feature worth admiring is it can operate just like normal toggle switch to help the lights to be put on or put off.

It is also featured by the ‘Away Mode’ where you appear to be at home while you are actually outside and may thus make the lights to be switched on and off randomly.

You will also be glad to know that it comes with a voice control feature which enables you to control the electrical appliances with mere voice commands and you do not even require to press a switch for the purpose.

Final Thoughts:

It is one of the smartest smart home hubs and comes with some of the most attractive features one can expect. You can exercise full control over the devices at your home and can switch on or off at ease with the help of it. The hands-free mode of operation allows you to switch on and switch off gadgets without actually using your hands.

Pro:
  • It is the most simplest to be installed, even if you are not deft at such tasks.
  • Your light switches will look more aesthetic with the help of this device.
  • It can be connected to the wifi in the most hassle-free manner.
Cons:
  • It is not very easy to re-establish the connection in case there is a sudden power failure.
  • You may sometimes be required to reset it.

Due to all the features mentioned above WeMo Light Switch is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

5)    Wink Hub 2

It is a smart home hub with wifi connection which the unique feature of this hub. So you can easily make the devices communicate with each other which is not possible in case of others. It will allow you to take control of devices, once installed and it is also easy to transfer from your old hub to this one.

It is also characterized by the auto-discovery and a revamped installation which will make your task even easier. The powerful wifi radio and ethernet connectivity of the hub helps you to connect things in a smoother way. Additionally, the sleek, modern outlook of the device gives it an edge over the others.
It is also a more reliable and secured option.

Moreover, the Wink app is there for connecting your devices easily under one single app. The key features of the app can be expressed in the form of four key points:

⦁    Controlling: You can control various functionalities, for example, you can open the door after you detect the presence of someone at the door.
⦁    Automation: The sensor based technology helps the lights to be turned on automatically when smoke is detected.
⦁    Monitoring: It receives alerts as to what is happening inside the home and thus helps you to control the activities going on inside.
⦁    Schedule: It also proves to be helpful for scheduling purposes like switching on the lights after sunrise and putting them off after sunset.

These features made us include It in our Best Smart Home Hub 2018 list.

Final Thoughts:

The Wink Hub 2 is a great smart home hub that helps you to bring multiple devices together and helps you to monitor your home devices at ease. You can control the different devices and at the same time and enjoy your access over them even you are away from home.

Pro:
  • It is easy to operate and the instructions are easy to be followed.
  • Resetting and reprogramming of devices is also very easy.
  • It is compatible with a wide range of devices.
Cons:
  • It is not very reliable according to some users.
  • The operation is a bit slower.

Due to all the features mentioned above Wink Hub 2 is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

6)    Amazon Echo (First Generation).

Amazon Echo allows you to chat with an imaginary character called Alexa. You will be able to ask her about various things and the voice can be heard from anywhere in the room. Not only that, it also has a provision for listening to music. Similarly, it can also help you to get the weather details and news reports.

It is capable of controlling a wide range of devices including lights, fans, switches, locks etc. It is being improved day by day and devices from more brands like WeMo, Sony, Samsung and Philips are now easy to be connected with it.

The room will be filed with 360degree omni radio and it is possible to operate the hub in hands-free voice control mode from every corner in the home.

Final Thoughts:

The scope of Amazon Echo goes beyond that of a smart hub. You can treat it as your assistant in all your daily tasks and use it to help you with the everyday chores. For instance, you can ask Alexa about your scheduled tasks for the day, take her help to locate your favorite restaurant or order her to re-issue a fresh towel.

Pro:
  • The quality of sound is clear and there are a number of voice commands that can be applicable.
  • You are also free to upload your music here.
Cons:
  • It will stop working in case of any wifi issue.

Due to all the features mentioned above Amazon Echo is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

7)    ) Logitech Harmony Home Hub for App Control of 8 Smart Home Devices, works with Alexa

As suggested by the name, this hub can connect up to eight devices. You will be able to connect your phone, tab or other such devices with a number of appliances and then control them according to your requirements.
Among the various devices that you can connect with it are lights, thermostats and locks. It will also allow you to replace as many as eight entertainment remotes that you have at your home.

The greatest feature of this product is probably its compatibility. It is compatible with as many as 270,000 devices from over 6000brands. It is easy to set up and includes things like Harmony Hub IR mini-blaster USB cable in the package which is capable of connecting to a range of devices.

What sets it apart from the rest is the way it connects to your home entertainment devices and allows you to enjoy life in a better way. At the same time, it will serve other purposes Iike switching on and switching off lights and controlling temperature.

It is also compatible with Alexa and you may thus enjoy the benefit of having an assistant to communicate with you and make your daily tasks easier. It can remind you of your chores and monitor your devices smartly.

Final Thoughts:

It is truly a multipurpose smart home hub with unparalleled compatibility. Use it to monitor your home appliances and entertainment devices.

Pro:
  • It is compatible with a range of devices from different brands.
  • You can connect single devices as well as connect them in groups in a customizable manner
Cons:
  • If you don’t need to connect so many devices it is a loss for you.

Due to all the features mentioned above Logitech Harmony Home Hub is included in our Top Printers 2018 list.

So these are some of the top smart home automation hubs of 2017. Do think twice before you invest in one and judge wisely whether they will actually serve your requirements.

Legit Reviewers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, and we get a commission on purchases made through our links. We have used all the products on this page and recommended them because these are products and companies that we have found helpful and trustworthy. Please let us know if you have any questions about anything listed in comments below!

James Flin
James Flin
Jammie Flin is a Professional Writer and an Entrepreneur

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