Smart plugs and power strips, most of which are wirelessly controlled and programmed can function as a very practical, and sometimes much smaller light and appliance timer. We’ve been using small, single outlet smart plugs to control the timing of various low priority aquarium devices for some time now.
Most notably, these smart plugs are getting increasingly cheap, practical and versatile. There’s already a handful of wifi smart plugs available for less than $20 but a new device from Ikea is going to push this cost down to $10 retail.
For sure at first the initial wave of these smart plugs will be as cheap in their function as their monetary cost suggests, and you shouldn’t expect much more than turning lights on and off. Especially now when the smart plugs are used only for turning lights on and off in 30 minute increments, but with more granular control it should be possible to use smart plugs to turn on feed pump, automate water changes, turn (small) flow pumps on and off, etc.
You can already purchase smart plugs and smart power strips in bundles that cost less than $10 per outlet and it’s impressive how much control you can get from what’s currently on the market. But if the current generation of single outlet smart plugs can control a single light for $10, we’re excited to see what the future will bring with increased function, lower cost and greater reliability. [Verge]