Like you, I've become somewhat more conscious about my energy use. It's not to the point where I'm running around the house switching plugs off if they haven't been used for half a second, but I'm taking steps to be smarter about the amount of energy we use to save cash. And that's why I'm considering some support from some smart home tech, such as this four-pack of TP-Link Tapo Smart Plugs down to £27.99 in the Amazon Spring Sale.
I've finally decided to get involved as this set is excellent value for money, effectively giving you four plugs for the price of three at £22 less than the usual price. It's a cheap, easy, and convenient way to take better control of essential devices around the home by simply connecting them to existing sockets.
Or, for £2 more, there's a version of the TP-Link Tapo Smart Plugs that come with energy monitoring that can give you a clear idea of the energy usage of devices over a specific period.
I'm not too concerned about the claims around so-called 'vampire devices' that suck up considerable amounts of energy even when on standby, as they can be disputed, according to The Guardian. However, I'm up for limiting the potential impact elsewhere and the added convenience of this cheap but handy smart home tech.
So, for me, it's the other energy-saving features that stand out - such as the option to set timers so sockets are switched off after a period of use. This will be good to put some sockets on a schedule so they only activate during specific times of the day. Good for lights in the living room at night or the coffee machine in the kitchen that I only need to be switched on in the morning. I'll learn to live with the clock flashing double zeroes constantly.
These functions are all accessed through a smartphone app, which offers remote control and voice control functions through Amazon Alexa and Google Home devices such as the Echo Dot and Nest Hub.
It's a purchase that's also been spurred on by some recent advice here at TechRadar that suggests there's never been a better time to invest in smart plugs. Even more so this set from TP-Link is available for such a low price.
There are other more expensive options out there that offer even more advanced features, but this is a more reasonable price to pay for a simple set to get started. The manufacturer also features highly on our list of the best smart plugs available to buy right now, so I'm happy to get them for such a low price.
TP-Link Tapo Smart Plugs (4-pack): was
£49.99 now £27.99 at Amazon
A fantastic low price for a four-pack of smart plugs that offer a suite of handy features to control your devices around the home. You can use them with any existing socket and connect an assortment of devices such as chargers, lights, small appliances, and more. Remote controls, schedules, and more are all handled in the free smartphone app, plus they are compatible with Google Home and Alexa for voice control. We've highly praised previous TP-Link smart plugs here at TechRadar, so it's a brand we trust. Plus, they sit with a solid 4.5-star rating after almost 55,000 reviews on Amazon. A version with extra energy monitoring features is also on sale for £29.99.