This smart home gadget has really improved my kitchen — and it can also help you save money.

This $80 smart power strip is a significant improvement in terms of managing appliances and monitoring energy usage.

My coffee machine, toaster oven, and smart speaker, for example, all demand continuous electricity. Then there are equipment like my KitchenAid stand mixer and Anova Precision Cooker sous vide, which I use less regularly but still require electricity from an accessible outlet. Finally, there must be an accessible location where a phone or wristwatch charger may be plugged in from time to time.

This smart home gadget has really improved my kitchen — and it can also help you save money دد

The few plugs integrated into the walls of my kitchen weren’t cutting it. For a quick remedy, I outfitted an old surge protector on my counter. However, the tangle of cables rapidly became a safety danger as well as an eyesore. We didn’t see a tangle of cables all over the Jetsons’ house, did we?

That’s why I bought a smart plug power strip from TP-Link Kasa. Kasa makes a number of the best smart home devices, including a few of the best smart lights and best smart plugs. I’ve used single-outlet smart plugs to control otherwise-dumb lamps or dehumidifiers with Alexa before, so I knew a smart power strip would support similar automation and voice commands.

I chose the Kasa Smart Plug Strip HS300, a surge protector with six independently controlled outlets and three USB ports that is ETL-certified. Instead of replacing the surge protector on top of my counter, I decided to mount my new one on the side, where it would be mostly hidden but still provide an ideal location for plugging in my Amazon Echo (4th generation), Keurig coffee maker, and Cuisinart toaster oven, which is one of the best toaster ovens on the market.

The Kasa app, on the other hand, is valuable for a different purpose. It allows me to keep track of how much energy the gadgets linked to the power strip use. I can monitor my overall, daily, and monthly energy consumption and identify which gadgets are consuming power even when I’m not using them.

Again, a smart power strip isn’t nearly as glamorous as my Alexa-enabled smart faucet or fancy wine fridge, but for $80 at full retail (it often goes on sale with the best Amazon deals for less) it’s an affordable way to make my kitchen more organized and intelligent. 

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