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The Best Smart Home Gadgets You Want But Don’t Need – Review Geek

collage of Nanoleaf light panels, Tonal workout system and Mirror home gym
Suzanne Humphries

Forget about phones and TVs and computers. It̵

7;s all about the technology we have do not must buy. That’s right. We live for expensive gadgets that are feature rich and not afraid of being ridiculous extra. From surround lighting for your home entertainment center to a mirror that doubles as your home gym, these products are a lot of fun – and completely unnecessary for most people.

If you have some extra dough, any of these great gadgets would make a worthwhile upgrade to your home. And they’ll do more than make your life easier – they’ll make it more fun, too. So go ahead, pick a few and indulge yourself.

A remarkably smart thermostat: Nest Learning Thermostat

Nest Learning Thermostat, 3rd generation, mounted on a gray wall

Smart thermostats have a lot to offer and can help you save energy and money. They even have some nice extras, such as monitoring the HVAC system. The third-generation Nest Learning Thermostat has all of that, plus it constantly learns and adapts to your usage patterns, ultimately allowing it to work exactly how and when you want it to.

The Learning Thermostat is so effective that Google claims it saves people an average of 10-12% on heating costs, 15% on cooling costs, and pays for itself within two years. It actively monitors your HVAC system and ensures that it is always running smoothly, alerts you when potential problems are detected and when it is time to replace your air filter.

It only takes about a week for the Learning Thermostat to learn your preferences, and it can easily adapt to your needs (or the seasons). This means that he learns to automatically turn up the heating in the morning and lower it an hour before going to sleep. It also learns when you’re not at home and then sets itself to Eco Temperature so it never wastes energy on an empty house. You can adjust the temperature and other settings on the thermostat or via the mobile apps for iOS and Android. And because it’s a Nest product, it works perfectly with Google Assistant.

A remarkably smart thermostat

Work like a genius: mirror, platoon and tone

That’s right, home gym equipment can be smart too. While the machines (and their subscription-based digital classes) are pricey, they give you a way to enjoy workouts at home while still reaping the benefits (and community energy) of studio classes. Plus, they look a lot cooler than the normal gear you’d find in a gym.

For all types of workouts: mirror

Mirror leans against a wall next to dumbbells

Mirror is super cool. It hardly takes up any space and looks like a stylish wall mirror, so it’s perfect for even the smallest studio apartments. But when you turn it on, you not only see your reflection, but also a screen showing your training instructor and other metrics.

It comes with a wall mount and stand, as well as a heart rate monitor and resistance bands, but you’ll have to pay $ 39 a month to access Mirror’s live and on-demand workouts. However, the plan includes up to six family members and offers over 50 different genres of workouts from boxing to yoga. Workouts range from 5-60 minutes and cover all skill levels, with new lessons weekly. It can also adjust workouts if you have an injury.

MIrror is great for tracking your exercise stats, such as exercise times and heart rate, and records your improvement if you use the same workout more than once. You can also earn points such as staying in your target heart rate zone and adding a gamified aspect to your workouts. You can even take advantage of the virtual one-on-one sessions with a personal trainer using the front-facing camera (and don’t worry, it comes with a privacy cover).

For cycling enthusiasts: Peloton Bike

Platoon bike at home

If you prefer to keep your cardio sessions in spin class form, you’ll love the Peloton Bike (from $ 1,895). With its large HD screen, motivational instructors, and community-based focus, a Peloton is a great choice for all the social spinners out there. It is also suitable for those who want to seriously focus on fitness goals, as it offers numerous training programs and challenges to choose from. The bike even has music playlists curated by an instructor so you can have fun while you exercise. You can access courses and other resources with the $ 39 per month Peloton membership.

The Peloton Bike has an adjustable saddle, handlebar and screen, so you can easily set it up in a way that is comfortable for you. You can also connect Bluetooth or Wi-Fi devices to it, such as a smartwatch or heart rate monitor. And don’t worry, the 22-inch touchscreen is sweat resistant, so you can interact with it even when you’re all sweaty. You can also opt for the Bicycle +, which offers a slightly larger 24-inch 360 degree rotatable touchscreen, additional speakers, auto-follow resistance and Apple GymKit integration.

You have four bike packages to choose from, starting with the Bike Basics package for $ 1,895, which includes delivery and assembly. The Bike Essentials package ($ 2045) includes spinner shoes and weights in addition to the bike; the Bike Works package ($ 2,145) includes spin shoes, weights, earplugs, a bike mat and a heart rate monitor in addition to the bike; and the Bike Family package ($ 2,345) which includes everything the Bike Works package has plus a water bottle and a second pair of cycling shoes.

For strength training: tonal

Tonal training system with bench

For anyone looking for sleek strength building exercise equipment, stick with Tonal ($ 2,995). Like Mirror, Tonal is wall mounted and won’t take up much space in your home. It has built-in solenoid arms that provide resistance up to 200 pounds. You can also choose to pay over $ 495 to get the Tonal accessory pack, which includes a sofa, mat, foam roller, and tied rope.

Tonal offers full-body building workouts and intelligent personal training. It also learns from your workouts and automatically adjusts to your body. It accurately measures reps, sets, range of motion, power, time under tension, and volume so it can track your gains over time. You can browse hundreds of instructor-led programs and find programs tailored to your body and fitness goals that will give you an efficient and effective workout.

Tonal’s monthly subscription to the workout videos costs $ 49 a month, which is more than both Mirror and Peloton, but probably still less than many personal gym memberships. The subscription gives you access to an unlimited number of household accounts, on-demand workouts, data measurement and progress tracking, workout logs, personalized suggestions, tonal music stations and more.

Lighting That Brilliant: Nanoleaf and Philips

Lights don’t have to be boring or dumb. In fact, they are so much better when they are exciting and smart, and match the media you are playing on your TV. In fact, with these great options, you’re going to think of lights like we do: as art and technology.

For modular lighting: Nanoleaf color panels

Yellow-green Nanoleaf color panels mounted in an X shape on a wall in a home office

The Nanoleaf Color Panels (starting at $ 119.99) come in three flavors: Shapes, Canvas, and Light Panels. With so many choices, you have an infinite number of customization options for your living room, home office, bedroom, or home gym. Whichever color panels you choose, you can access over 16 million stunning colors, including tunable white, which is great for functional lighting, such as above your head in a dark kitchen.

The lights can also dance to music in real time using the Rhythm Scenes feature or mirror what’s playing on your TV screen for an immersive gaming or movie experience. Both the Canvas and Shapes options support touch experiences, allowing you to interact with the panels. You can even control them with gestures or play interactive games.

Each of the three types of panels contains physical controls, but you can also operate them with the Nanoleaf app for iOS and Android devices. The Nanoleaf color panels add a unique focal point to any room in your home and can make any activity a little more fun.

For immersion in entertainment centers: Philips Hue Play Gradient Lightstrip

Philips Hue Play Gradient Lightstrip reflects colors on the wall behind TV, with a couple sitting on the couch in the foreground looking at it

You’ve heard of surround sound. Now, with the Philips Hue Play Gradient Lightstrip ($ 219), prepare your senses for surround lighting! The fun light strip attaches to the back of your TV and emits the same colors on your TV screen on the wall behind it, making for an incredibly immersive viewing experience. The strip can be attached to 55-75 inch TVs that are wall mounted or stand with the included mount.

The colors blend seamlessly into the colors displayed on your TV, whether you’re gaming, watching a TV show or movie. Each of the colors also blends naturally, creating a unique effect that doesn’t look flashy or weird. One note: you’ll need to get the Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box, Philips Hue Bridge (unless you already have one with existing Hue bulbs) and use the iOS or Android mobile app for everything to work properly.

This faucet is a genius: Delta VoiceIQ

Delta VoiceIQ Tap with running water in kitchen

A smart faucet might sound over the top at first, but when you think about it, the concept is super handy! With a Delta VoiceIQ faucet, you can use voice commands to turn the faucet on or off, heat up water, dispense a measure of water (such as 2 cups), or fill a custom container (such as your coffee pot or dog bowl). The smart faucet is perfect for when you need water, but your hands are full or dirty.

Let a robot do your dirty work: iRobot Roomba i7

iRobot Roomba i7 and mobile app on white background
i robot

Let’s face it: vacuuming sucks. And that’s my full explanation of why it’s worth the cost to upgrade to a robotic vacuum cleaner, like the iRobot Roomba i7. This cute little guy uses Smart Mapping technology to create a floor plan of your home so he can navigate efficiently while cleaning. You can also tell him to avoid certain rooms and set him on a schedule so that he cleans your floors regularly. It even learns your personal cleaning schedule and preferences and runs automatically.

The Roomba i7 can handle crumbs, pet hair and other mess with ease. It can run for up to an hour on a single charge and returns to base to charge if you set it to run longer. You can also buy the iRobot Clean Base, which allows the vacuum to automatically empty itself up to 30 times before you have to step in. The Roomba i7 is a great beginner-friendly robot vacuum cleaner and is ideal for those who don’t. I want to jump for a high-end model full of premium features.

Let a robot do your dirty work

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