Smart technology continues to grow in popularity across the world.
More and more people are looking to turn their homes into smart homes by introducing a bunch of different smart systems.
Smart devices can help us do a wide range of neat things all without moving.
These include turning on the lights, shutting the curtains, tracking washing loads, and monitoring security cameras.
Whilst all of this sounds great, It can be hard to organize and make the most of the powerful systems you have at your disposal.
That is of course if you don’t have a smart home hub.
A smart home hub allows users to connect smart devices to one single network, helping to unlock endless features, keep things organized, and create a fully automated home.
Today, we’re going to help you find the best smart home hub.
To do so, we’ve put together a list detailing the very best options.
OUR TOP PICK
We’ll kickstart our list with one of the most affordable smart home hub systems on the market.
Despite being one of the most affordable options, this smart home hub from Amazon has everything you need to automate your smart home.
Compared to the Amazon Echo (4th Gen), this model has a more vibrant sound and is surprisingly lower in price.
Featuring WiFi, Bluetooth, and Zigbee, this smart home hub is ideal for most people.
Thanks to this versatile connectivity and multiple radios, you can effortlessly connect a wide range of smart devices to the hub.
You also have the added bonus of having Alexa (see also: Does Alexa Have A Camera?)at your disposal.
Highly sophisticated, Alexa will handle all your automation needs in a flash.
This sleek, spherical-shaped hub is also great when it comes to security.
The device will listen for breaking glass and smoke alarms. It can also be connected to your smart doorbell.
We were also impressed with how this smart home hub looks. It will fit perfectly in your home.
- Sleek and sophisticated - This smart home hub looks great and performs even better.
- Feature-rich - The Amazon Echo is loaded with neat features.
- Solid security features- This smart home hub can be connected to Alexa Guard.
- No 3.5mm jack - This hub is missing a 3.5mm jack.
A lot of people who have experience and knowledge in the world of smart home hubs tend to regard the Aeotec smart home hub as the very best.
From what we’ve seen of this hub, we find it very hard to disagree.
Before we get into what the hub has to offer, it is worth noting that this is the best hub you can buy if you’re looking for a hub that allows SmartThings connectivity.
The SmartThings platform allows you to connect hundreds of different devices.
However, Samsung stopped selling the hub. Today, only the Aeotec smart home hub works with the platform.
The Aeotec smart home hub replicates all the same functions as the Samsung SmartThings hub.
In fact, it is essentially the exact same hardware, just with a different logo on the front.
It has both Z-Wave and Zigbee connectivity and comes jam-packed with neat features.
You can easily connect your smart doorbell, TV, lights, washing machine, curtains, and so much more.
Whilst it doesn’t look as good as the Amazon Echo, we were pleased to find that it came equipped with USB and Ethernet ports.
- Impressive automation options - Connect hundreds of devices to this hub.
- Compatible with Nest - This hub works with Nest.
- Unassuming design - The Aeotec hub is easy to keep out of the way.
- No backup battery - This device doesn’t have a battery backup.
Also available at: Vesternet.com
The next smart home hub on our list is the Aqara Hub M2.
This smart home hub not only helps you reduce the clutter of remote controls in your home, but it also helps you automate a reliable security system.
Thanks to this smart home hub's versatile connectivity options, you can automate your security routine, giving you that extra secure feel.
For example, you can automate the hub to lock your doors and turn your lights off at the same time.
You can also monitor your security cameras and set (see also: How To Set Up Ring Camera)up an alarm routine.
Aside from security, this hub can also be used to control appliances found around the home.
This includes TVs, fans, blinds, lights, air conditioners, and more.
The process of setting your automations up is easy thanks to the hub's usability.
The Aqara Hub M2 supports Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google.
What we loved most about this smart home hub was its IR blaster. Built into the hub, this makes it much easier to remove remote controls from the home.
- Infrared remote - This smart hub acts as an infrared remote.
- Fairly priced - The Aqara Hub M2 is well-priced.
- Versatile - This hub supports Google, Alexa, and Apple HomeKit.
- No Zigbee support - The Aqara Hub M2 doesn’t offer third-party Zigbee support.
Also available at: Walmart.ca
If you’re looking to buy a smart home hub solely to keep your home secure, look no further than the Abode Iota.
The Abode Iota is a pricey option that requires a monthly subscription, but it is easily one of, if not the best smart home hub when it comes to offering reliable security.
This smart hub combines a security system, security camera, and a powerful smart hub all in one small device.
That’s not all though, as this device also comes with a key fob, alarm, motion sensors, and door/window sensors.
If you keep this smart home hub at home, you can leave the house or go to bed with peace of mind that your home will be kept secure.
If anything does happen, you’ll be notified immediately.
In terms of other features this hub offers, it can still be used like other smart home hubs.
It comes with various smart home skills and works with Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit.
When we reviewed the Adobe Iota, we were most impressed with the emergency service features it offers.
The hub will automatically call the appropriate emergency service if an alarm is triggered, smoke is detected, and when the panic alarm is pressed.
- Perfect for security - The Adobe Iota has been designed with security in mind.
- 24/7 professional monitoring - The hub will automatically contact emergency services.
- Common smart hub features included - This hub still comes with the simple features you would expect from a smart home hub.
- Pricey - The Adobe Iota is expensive. It also requires a monthly subscription.
Also available at: Goabode.com
The penultimate smart home hub on this list is the Broadlink RM4 Pro.
There’s a lot to like about this hub. For starters, it only has a small and elegant design.
This makes it a great option if you want to hide your hub away.
Secondly, it is available at a very good price.
This is handy for those of you looking for a budget-friendly smart home hub.
Finally, it comes with a wide range of powerful tools and features.
Despite being one of the cheaper smart home hubs on the market, this device has a lot to offer.
An excellent universal remote, you can use the Broadlink RM4 Pro to control security systems, alarms, air conditioners, TVs, stereo systems, fans, and so much more.
It doesn’t work with Zigbee but it makes up for that with other tools and standalone accessories.
In fact, for us, it was this smart home hub’s standalone accessories that sold it to us.
Some of the best and most useful accessories include smart light switches, smart plugs, smart buttons, and motion sensors.
- Budget-friendly - The Broadlink RM4 Pro is very affordable.
- Neat standalone accessories - The standalone accessories help you create a smart home.
- Small - Easily place this hub in your home.
- Not compatible with Zigbee - The Broadlink RM4 Pro doesn’t work with Zigbee.
Also available at: Ebay.com
The final smart home hub on our list is the Wink Hub 2.
The Wink Hub 2 is the best smart home hub you can buy if you’re keen to find a hub that offers the most versatility.
It is also one of the best hubs you can buy if you’re already a smart home pro.
This smart home hub works with more smart home protocols than any other platform or device.
It will work with the likes of Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa straight out of the box.
The only exception is Apple HomePod Mini.
The Wink Hub 2, could be compared to the Samsung SmartThings hub, however, it is a lot easier to set up.
We have the Wink Auto-Discovery feature to thank for that. This feature will automatically find all the compatible devices in your home.
We were massively impressed with this feature as it reduced setup time significantly. Setup only takes 5 minutes.
The Wink Hub 2 also uses If This Then That (IFTTT). This is a user-friendly tool that makes it much easier for the user to automate a wide range of tasks.
- Easy setup - This hub only takes 5 minutes to set up.
- Extremely versatile - The Wink Hub 2 is by far the most versatile hub on the market.
- WiFi compatible - Experience fewer connectivity issues.
- Bulky design - The Wink Hub 2 doesn’t have the nicest of designs.
Also available at: Wink.com
Now you’ve seen what the market has to offer, you can start thinking about the smart home hub you want and need.
Despite having a list of the best options at your fingertips, there are still a number of key things you need to think about if you’re going to make the best decision.
To help, we’ve put together a short buyer’s guide.
In this buyer’s guide, you’ll find the key factors you need to take into consideration when choosing the right smart home hub.
By far one of the most important things you have to think about when choosing a smart home hub is its compatibility.
If you want to make the most of your smart devices, you have to find a smart hub that is compatible with them.
The sort of things you need to consider when taking compatibility into account (see also: Are Gmail Accounts Vulnerable? [What You Need To Know])includes the supported software, connectivity, and the protocols used.
For your smart home hub to be compatible, it must speak the same language and follow the same protocols.
The most common languages and protocols are Z-Wave, WiFi, Bluetooth, and Zigbee.
With this in mind, if your smart devices support the Zigbee protocol, make sure the home hub does too.
You can work this out by reading product descriptions
What Do You Need The Smart Home Hub For?
You can’t possibly make the best decision until you know what you need a smart home hub for.
Not all smart home hub devices are the same. Some come with more features than others.
Therefore, you need to know what you need from a hub so that you can pick one that offers everything you need.
For example, if you need a smart home hub that will monitor the security of your home, look for a device that has security features.
On the other hand, if you want one that will control appliances around the home, look for something slightly different.
If you need to fully automate your home, you might want to look for a hub that does both.
When you know what you need a smart home hub for, you can start looking at the features you need.
Generally speaking, most smart home hubs come with features that allow basic automation and control.
This might include TV control, doorbell camera monitoring, and light switch control.
If you want a hub that will keep your house secure, you might look for a device with more security-related features.
This would include alarm detection, motion sensors, and emergency service features.
Alternatively, those of you looking for simpler automation might prefer features that allow you to control various appliances around the house.
These might be TV control, light control, curtain control, and air conditioning control.
It’s always a good idea to take a closer look at the company you’re buying from before making a decision.
Whilst all the brands on our list have a solid reputation, there are things you might prefer about one brand more than another.
Of course, some brands are generally considered better than others too.
This is something you can do by reading customer reviews and by checking online.
Simple things like where and how the home hub is made might impact your final decision.
At some point, you’re also going to have to think about how much money you have to spend on a smart home hub.
Whilst this may sound obvious, thinking about this at the right time can make the decision-making process much easier.
By working out your budget before you even look for a smart home hub, you can save time by heading straight to the products you can afford.
You won’t get led down a rabbit hole looking at overpriced devices you can’t afford.
Working out your budget in advance will also help you avoid overspending.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I Need A Smart Home Hub?
If you don’t have any smart devices in your home, there’s a good chance you don’t need a smart home hub.
However, if you plan on or already own multiple smart home devices, you should consider buying one.
Those of you with multiple smart devices will benefit greatly from a smart home hub.
A hub will make it much easier for you to control, organize, and monitor your devices.
Which Smart Home Hub Is The Best?
Generally speaking, all of the smart home hub’s on our list are great.
They all offer the basic features you need to easily manage and organize your smart home.
Having said that, the best smart home hub’s on our list are probably the Amazon Echo (5th Gen) and Aeotec smart home hub.
Has Samsung SmartThings Been Discontinued?
To a degree, yes, Samsung SmartThings has been discontinued. Samsung no longer develops its own SmartThings products.
However, Aeotec is now responsible for producing SmartThings hardware.
No matter what anyone tells you, a smart home can’t run smoothly without a smart home hub.
Smart home hubs make it much easier for you to set up and organize your home automation.
Without a smart home hub, you won’t be able to make the most of the powerful smart devices you have dotted around your home.
Smart home hubs also make it much easier to secure your home.
In today’s article, we showed you 6 of the very best smart home hubs. We looked at what they have to offer and any pros and cons you should be aware of.
We then went a step further and gave you a buyer’s guide to make the decision process easier.
All you have to do now is narrow the list down and decide which smart home hub is the best one for your needs and requirements.
Be sure to refer back to the buyer’s guide for help!