There are two things I want to see in any new smart home product: Matter and Thread. Matter informs me that in the future I will have access to the product regardless of which platform I use. Thread informs me that it will work extremely well in my home in terms of responsiveness. The new Onvis Smart Plug meets all these requirements and has quickly become one of my favorite smart plugs. HomeKit Weekly is a series focused on smart home accessories, automation tips and tricks, and everything related to Apple's smart home framework. Onvis may not be one of the most well-known smart home suppliers, but they do make a wide variety of products that work well and are extremely affordable. Having a smart plug that supports Matter (Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, Google Home and Samsung SmartThings) ensures you can use it no matter what mix of smart home platforms you use. While the Thread standard isn't perfect, I have a lot of hope for it in the future. When a network is set up properly, a robust smart home is created. Unboxing and setup Matter has taken the best of HomeKit device onboarding and brought it to the Matter standard. Onvis includes a QR code on the side so you can easily scan it as it boots up. My biggest pet peeve with smart plugs is when the QR code is on the back, so you have to do the dance of scanning it very quickly and then plugging it in hoping your device doesn't disconnect beforehand. Seriously, manufacturers need to stop this practice. Onvis also includes a Matter code in the manual. Kudos to them – that next to it and a backup QR code should be the standard for smart plugs. The Onvis Smart Plug is the ideal smart plug to future-proof your environment. Once you plug it in, scan the code in the Home app > Add an accessory section or simply open your camera app and point it at the QR code. HomeKit does its dance and then you can choose a room, name the device and choose whether it is a fan, lamp or socket. I especially like the fan model if you have a floor/desk fan attached to it, because you can use some weather-based automations based on temperature, etc. What are smart plugs good for? For me, smart plugs are the original smart home product. This allows you to easily convert an existing outlet into a smart outlet, without having to hire an electrician to swap out an outlet. We use them everywhere in our house. We have lights on it. We have white noise machines on it. We have them on every electronic device that needs to be restarted every few months. There really is no limit to its usefulness. For lights in particular, the Onvis Smart Plugs have some nice scene and automation capabilities. If you have lights, you can set them to automatically turn on at a certain time and turn off at a certain time. You can also use location-based automations within HomeKit to enable them when you get home. I also find it useful to be able to control the lighting remotely if you are away from home for a longer period of time, so that people get the impression that you are at home. For a product that costs less than $20, it's a great entry into your HomeKit environment. With Matter and Thread in one package, you can buy the Onvis Smart Plug from Amazon. FTC: We use monetized auto-affiliate links. More.
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