The best smart home Christmas gifts to buy in 2018
When it comes to shopping for Christmas gifts, it can be tempting to buy the best-looking deal in stores or online, but it’s important to select the smart home gifts that just about anyone on your Christmas list will enjoy.
It’s important to select the smart home gifts that just about anyone on your Christmas list will enjoy.
So, grab some pumpkin (or pecan) pie and digest our recommendations for the best smart home devices to give as gifts this holiday season.
The Best Smart Gadget Stocking Stuffer
The best Christmas smart gadget stocking stuffer is definitely a smart plug outlet. They are cheap, they are small, and they are the perfect gift for anyone. Even if the receiver doesn’t already have any smart devices, they will delight in using their smartphone or tablet to turn on a lamp or schedule the coffee pot to start brewing in the morning.
If you buy a smart outlet for someone that is already heavily invested in their smart home, be sure to choose one that has the widest compatibility. We’ve tested and loved the simple smart home outlets from Teckin.
The Best Smart Device Gift for the Newbie
It’s very rare that you can buy any one-size-fits-all smart home Christmas gift, but if you’re looking to give one to someone to help them start their smart home, we recommend a smart speaker.
Buying a smart speaker makes for a wonderful Christmas gift because if the recipient never bought another smart device in their life, they can still get the news, listen to music, ask questions, set alarms, and on, and on, and on. Later, they can use it to control pretty much any other smart gadget they buy for themselves.
Our recommendation would be to buy one with a screen. This expands the many amazing things a smart speaker can do–watch a video, see a clock, display the weather forecast–while also giving them the option of someday using it as a video speakerphone!
Unless they are a rabid Apple fan, we suggest making your pick between an Amazon Echo or a Google Home
The biggest decision is to decide on the platform. Unless they are a rabid Apple fan, we suggest making your pick between an Amazon Echo or a Google Home. If they love Amazon Prime or use a Fire TV stick go with an Echo Spot or Echo Show. If they use an Android phone, enjoy YouTub videos, and love Google, Gmail, etc, then go with the new Google Home Hub.
The Best Gift for the Smart Home Obsessed
If you’re buying for someone that already has a healthy obsession with all things “smart home” then you need to be a little careful not to buy them something they already have. While that could lead you to buy something really obscure, it could also be something they would never actually use.
The safest smart gadget Christmas gift would be a smart wifi video camera. Even if they already have one (or two, or three) adding a smart camera to their collection is always a welcomed addition. Be sure to nose around their home the next time you visit (not too much, you may be on camera!) so you can make sure you gift one that is compatible with their choice of either Google Home or Amazon Echo. Or, if you’re not sure what they use, buy one that is compatible with Amazon, Google, AND Apple: such as the Logitech Circle 2.
The Best High-end Smart Gadget Splurge
OK, so here’s the grand finale! The ultimate smart home Christmas gift splurge! For your spouse, your parents, your adult kids still on the “nice list” or even your boss! What’s the best luxury, high-end, smart home device to give this Christmas?
A mesh Wi-Fi router.
A what now?
If you’re going to build the complete smart home, filled with smart bulbs, smart outlets, smart speakers, smart everything, then you are going to need to ensure that your Wi-Fi signal is a) fast enough and b) able to reach all areas of your home. Don’t think that will ever be an issue? Outdoor cameras and video doorbells, placed at the extreme perimeter of a home, tell a different story.
Now, giving a mesh Wi-Fi router may not be the most glamorous smart device to give as a Christmas present, but it will be the one that the recipient probably didn’t budget for their own purchase and also will LOVE you for buying them a gift that keeps on giving (no, not as tasty as the Jelly of the Month Club).
The Smart Home Devices You Should NOT Gift
While most guides you read online will promote just about every single smart home device on sale–especially if they can make a nice affiliate commission–we may be the only site that will warn you about the Christmas gifts you should stay away from when doing your Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping.
We may be the only site that will warn you about the Christmas gifts you should stay away from
What are they?
Smart outlets, video doorbells, smart light switches. In fact, anything that needs to be installed by hard-wiring, should not be on your Christmas shopping list.
Because each hard-wired smart device has its own wiring compatibility guidelines. That means that they may not be compatible with your recipient’s home wiring and will need to, at best be returned, or at worst, cause an electrical fire hazard! Yikes!
So, unless you are specifically told which smart switch, outlet, doorbell etc to buy, we recommend staying away from buying one as a Christmas gift.
Happy Holiday Shopping!
So, that’s our guide for buying the best smart devices this Christmas. We’ve included some of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals to look out for over Thanksgiving, but you may find even better deals locally and many of them will still be on great sales leading up to Christmas.