Six of the best: Smart home appliances

Published: Sunday 15th March 2015 by The News Editor

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All controlled via an app on your iOS or Android-powered devices, our half dozen gizmos will bring fun and functionality into your home:

Boiling up

iKettle – £99.99 from

Set this one to alarm function and it’ll wake you via your smartphone telling you it’s all boiled and ready to pour. It also has several heat settings to create the ideal temperature for your chosen brew and can be set so it’s ready when you walk in the door. A superb bean-to-cup coffee maker is also available from this brand.

Knows best

Mother – £249.99 from

Looking like a plain Russian doll, this multi-tasking gadget tracks your family’s daily life: it’s a fitness tracker, statistics keeper, security system and life coach all rolled into one. By capturing individual movements and actions of each person, this data is fed back to the main unit and is all visible on the smartphone app. From reminding someone to take medicine and visualising your night’s sleep to protecting your home from intruders, this is one very smart piece of kit.

Switched on

Belkin WeMo Insight Switch – £49.99 from

Control just about any piece of electrical equipment in your home with this gadget that also allows you to monitor your energy consumption. Turn plugged in devices on and off remotely, set schedules based on your routine or set the timer to sunrise/sunset. The WeMo app is both iOS and Android compatible, will tell you if you’ve left something on for a while and, by setting up notification levels on the app, will let you know the device’s energy consumption and what it’s costing you.

Laundry time

Samsung WW10H9600EW Freestanding Washing Machine – £1,480 from

With a decent sized 10KG load, outstanding energy efficiency rating and looks that’ll deter you from making this an integrated unit in your home, the Samsung washing machine is in a class of its own. A touchscreen control unit lets you pick from a plethora of programmes including six extra special care settings and you load this machine with up to a month’s worth of detergent and it dispenses it intelligently. Add to this spec sheet its ability to be controlled and this really is one mean machine.

Temperature control

Nest Battery & Mains Powered Learning Thermostat – £179.99 from

Time to rethink your home heating, this Nest system creates a personalised schedule for your home and eliminates the need for a programmer. It also gives you the tools you need to save energy and, by learning from your schedule and programming itself, turns down the heat when you’re away. The app lets you control your heating remotely and shows you how much heat you’ve used over the last 10 days and sends a monthly report to track energy use.

Total control

Logitech Harmony Ultimate Smart Universal Remote Control – £159.95 from

With multiple entertainment devices at home comes one perennial pain – losing any of their remote controllers. This touchscreen device offers access to up to 15 of your devices, controlling them all, whether behind a cupboard door or out on display. Download the Harmony app and select from 50 icons on your smartphone screen to take further control of your gadgetry.

App of the Week

djay – Free on Google Play

Forget connecting up coloured candy icons to while away the minutes – why not try your hand at mixing a few tracks and see what skills you might have hidden away? This free app turns any Android device into a fully-fledged DJ system offering direct access to mix your favourite songs and playlists instantly.

Copyright Press Association 2015

Published: Sunday 15th March 2015 by The News Editor

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