Nanoleaf Essentials Lightstrip 2M Starter Kit

Eight smart gadgets to soup up your home

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In need of a tech upgrade? There are a number of brilliant devices out there promising to streamline everyday life.

From robot vacuums to smart mugs and super-plugs, the living is easy when technology lends a hand. The following home gadgets combine usefulness with an innovation factor, which also makes them the perfect gifts this festive season.

Nanoleaf Essentials Lightstrip 2M Starter Kit

As well as illuminating a room in different light temperatures, this 80-inch smart LED strip offers circadian lighting where the colour of its glow transitions over the course of the day — including sunrise and sunset simulation for rousing and unwinding more gently. Part of a creative range of bulbs and light tubes, it’s a great base for smarter, personalised home lighting. £44.99,

Roku Streambar

This sleek soundbar adds smart capabilities and surround sound to any TV, enabling easy access to streaming platforms on the biggest screen in the house. Sound optimisation features can automatically lower the volume on commercials and dial it up on dialogue, with Bluetooth functionality enabling music playback from other devices. It comes with a manual remote and also supports voice control. £129.99,

Read more: Five fantastic gadgets to create a cosier home this winter

Ember Smart Mug (295 mL)

This heated ceramic mug keeps hot drinks at an ideal temperature thanks to its charging coaster, for around 1.5 hours. Drinking temperature can be set at 57C-62.5C on a companion app. When a cuppa is ready for consumption, the app sends an alert and a discreet LED on the mug changes colour. £99.95,

MEATER Plus With Bluetooth Repeater

Meat heads can perfect their next roast with this smart thermometer that monitors internal and surface temperatures to send smartphone alerts when a cut is done. Once it’s slid into a piece of meat, the type of meat and desired doneness can be inputted on the app. Its heat-resistant ceramic handle is oven-safe, while a 50m Bluetooth range makes it suitable for outdoor use, too. £119,

Read more: How to make your conservatory cosy in time for winter

iRobot Wi-fi Connected Roomba 698 Robot Vacuum

The Roomba 698 packs all the essentials of iRobot’s high-tech automated vacuums: dual brushes to loosen and lift dirt, sensors for navigation, and dirt detection tech enabling a deeper clean in high-traffic areas. Automatic cleaning can be scheduled via an app or triggered when a paired smartphone leaves the home. £269,

Google Nest Hub Max

With a 10-inch high-definition display, this smart home hub can be used to display digital photos, follow recipes, make video calls and read the news, as well as manage other smart devices. The camera doubles as a security cam that can be checked remotely, while face detection means each household member is shown only their notifications or personalised content. £219,

Lavazza A Modo Mio Voicy

Ask and ye shall receive: this capsule espresso machine is integrated with Amazon Alexa, enabling voice commands to get that morning coffee made. Temperature on a cup of joe can also be customised and saved, while lucky recipients of the Voicy can also ask it for music, the news, weather, and other Alexa-enabled information. £1 with capsule subscription (minimum nine deliveries),

Read more: Bring the natural world indoors with foraged Christmas decorations



Eve Energy Smart Plug & Power Meter

Plug any device into this smart plug to monitor its power consumption and enable voice activation. iOS and Android apps display detailed energy breakdown and can also schedule automatic on and off times to take advantage of off-peak pricing. Originally compatible only with Apple, support for Samsung, Google and Amazon smart home systems is incoming. £31.69

Words by Natasha Stokes

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