Peace by Hampton smart plug review: This ultra-cheap smart plug offers no surprises
Hampton is best known for its high-end door locks and home security products—marketed under the Array and Brinks brands—and now it’s making a bigger push into the smart home with its first volley of non-security products. Sold under the Peace by Hampton sub-brand, the line includes LED lighting and add-on smart plugs, the latter of which is reviewed here.
This 15-amp smart plug is a Wi-Fi enabled, single-outlet affair, and it’s sold exclusively as a two-pack at Best Buy. This is strictly an on/off smart plug—it can’t dim the bulb in a connected lamp. From a hardware perspective, this plug is decidedly familiar, with a generic, elongated design that juts out over the sides of a standard socket cover, but not by much. The unit is squat enough so that it doesn’t block the second outlet, so both plugs in the box can be used in a single receptacle. A manual power button can be found on the right side of the plug. Note that the device supports 2.4GHz Wi-Fi networks only, not the less-crowded 5GHz frequency band.
This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best smart plugs, where you’ll find reviews of competing products, plus a buyer’s guide to the features you should consider when shopping for this type of product.
You’ll notice one conspicuous absence when you open the Peace by Hampton box, and that’s any sort of manual. There’s a tiny card directing you to dial an 800 number or visit a website if you “need help,” but otherwise there’s absolutely no guidance included aside from what’s printed on the outside of the box. If you’re versed in smart home technology, this won’t present a major problem, but novices—who are likely the ones to gravitate to an inexpensive product like this—might find themselves a bit lost.
The good news is that the Peace by Hampton Single Outlet Smart Plug needs very little care and feeding. Download the Peace by Hampton mobile app, and the app will walk you through the rest of the process. After a surprisingly onerous registration process, the app quickly associates the device with your Wi-Fi network, and you’re on your way. (The app is largely a clone of similar programs from other vendors, namely the popular Smart Life app.)
With the Peace by Hampton app, options are spare. A large on/off button is placed front and center, and options for setting up schedules and a countdown timer are easy to access. Schedules can be set to send a push notification to your phone when they run, but otherwise configuration options are sparse—there’s no vacation mode or sundown/sunrise settings, for example.
On the plus side, the system does support Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control. All these features worked as expected in my testing, with no hiccups encountered.
This is a budget product, to be sure, and you won’t find upscale features like energy monitoring or even a way to turn off the LEDs on the front of the device—at least one is always on—though the “Smart” tab in the app gives you just a little more flexibility, including the ability to turn the plug on or off based on changes in the weather. These features were erratic in my testing, though, so I wouldn’t place too much trust in them. However, at $19 for a two-pack of smart plugs—exclusively available at Best Buy—the Peace by Hampton smart plug is very good value.