If you’re thinking about or beginning to build a smart home ecosystem, you know that the most difficult thing is ensuring that all of your different devices are compatible with each other. While not all hubs will fully integrate with every device, they’re overall great solutions that afford you some control over things like smart lights, locks, speakers, cameras, and thermostats, all from one app instead of dozens.
Smart hubs used to be standalone devices, but now they mostly come in multipurpose models, such as speakers, displays, and even mesh Wi-Fi routers. So now you won’t necessarily need a dedicated hub to connect your smart speaker to your security system, for instance; the smart speaker itself can serve as the hub. We’ve included several hybrid options for you to consider below based on your home’s needs and your personal preferences.
Check out the quick info below on the top five smart hubs, then scroll deeper for buying advice and full reviews of these models plus other high-ranking options.SMART SPEAKER
Total Expert Score: 86/100
A capable smart speaker with all the power and features you need in a hubWI-FI ROUTER
Total Expert Score: 77/100
The mesh Wi-Fi system for controlling all of your connected devicesSMART DISPLAY
Total Expert Score: 83/100
One of the best screens to add to a Google Home ecosystemHOME ENTERTAINMENT
Total Expert Score: 79/100
Replaces those physical remotes for smarter home entertainmentBEST VALUE
Total Expert Score: 87/100
An affordable entry into home automation
How to Decide if You Need a Hub & Which One to Get
Because most smart devices come with an app or voice assistant for control, you may not need a smart hub. However, once you start adding many different devices to your smart home ecosystem, you may want to streamline your home automation by connecting them all to one device from which to control them all through a single app and voice assistant.