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PSA: Why Smart Plugs Are Often Pointless (Electric vs Mechanical Switches) – New Video

YouTube thumbnail showing a smart plug my coffee machine and the text Misleading Advertising

The marketing of smart plugs is great: easily control your household appliances and devices from anywhere in the world, or even via smart routines and schedules. Simple. However if you look at the “fine print” of many smart plugs, they say that they only work with mechanical switches. Many devices have electric (not mechanical) switches, … Read more

Ring Devices Without A Subscription: What Still Works (Hint: Not Much) – New Video

YouTube thumbnail showing me looking confused and two Ring app screenshots with no recordings

Ring devices aren’t exactly cheap, so the thought of paying even more for an additional monthly subscription seems silly. Surely it’s worth just keeping the basic Ring functionality without a subscription, right? Well… as it turns out, many of the key features only work with a Ring Protect plan – whether it’s the $3 per … Read more

Help! My Amazon Echo Is Making Random Noises/Beeps/Chimes?! (How To Fix) – New Video

YouTube thumbnail for weird Amazon Echo sounds

This is a video guide to go alongside my blog post last year which walks you through everything to investigate if your Echo device is making random noises, beeps, chimes – or even weird train-like sounds! Echo devices are very useful, but they have been known to make “creepy” noises at times, which can be … Read more

Hue Lab Formula Examples – Color Loop, Living Scenes (& 12 More!) – New Video

Philips Hue bulb and lightstrip in my study (as a YouTube thumbnail) with Hue Labs screenshot to the right

The official Philips Hue app is a little bit… boring, to be honest. Unlike the LIFX app, there are no dynamic effects or scenes. Any scenes or colors chosen within the Hue app are just static – meaning they don’t then change color or brightness. However thankfully Hue have the “Hue Labs”, which allow you … Read more

Ring Doorbell Wired vs Pro (What’s the difference?!) – New Video

Ring Doorbell Wired vs Pro (with me looking up at them)

I purchased the Ring Doorbell Pro – a purely hardwired Ring doorbell – around a year ago, and it’s working out really nicely for me. But Ring have now announced the Ring Doorbell Wired, which is also purely hardwired. So… what’s the difference between the Pro and Wired versions? And what are the similarities? Well, … Read more

New Video – Protect Your Neighbor’s Privacy With Ring Cameras & Doorbells

Ring neighbors privacy YouTube thumbnail

Ring cameras and Ring doorbells are great for crime prevention and parcel deliveries because they record in full HD and record audio. However this also means that they can be misused to invade neighbor’s privacy. As a result, this video explores some of the things you can do to protect your neighbor’s privacy when installing … Read more

New Video – Philips Hue Lightstrip Plus: Everything You Need To Know (Does It Justify Its High Price?)

The various parts of a Philips Hue Lightstrip V4 base and extension kit

Despite building my own DIY smart lightstrip for my kitchen last year, I purchased Philips Hue’s lightstrip to run around my desk in the black friday sales. Why did I do this? Well, I wanted to compare the Philips Hue Lightstrip Plus to my own ZigBee DIY one. Is Hue’s offering really worth the high … Read more

New Video – Amazon Echo: Change Alexa’s Flash Briefing News & Weather To Suit You

YouTube video showing me, an Echo Dot in listening mode and the textg "Improve Alexa Flash Briefings"

The Flash Briefing feature on Amazon Echo devices is quite useful, unless you dislike the news or weather provider – in which case a very useful feature quickly becomes wasted. Thankfully it’s quite easy to change the news and weather provider used for your flash briefing, along with adding loads of other briefing sources – … Read more