There are plenty of “smart outlets” on the market today that promise to keep you safe from electric shocks or control your plugged-in gadgets from a smartphone app. But there’s always room for innovation, and a new option called Nyrius boasts some pretty cool features that we’ve never seen before—at least at this price.
First of all, Nyrius won’t replace your physical outlet, and you don’t need to install it. Just plug this small brick into the wall and then plug something else into the brick. Whatever you plugged in—maybe a lamp, a space heater, a fan or speakers—is now connected to your smartphone via the Nyrius app on Android and iOS.
Now you can control it with a few quick taps as long as you’re in Bluetooth range, but that’s just a taste of what Nyrius can do. The smart outlet packs a built in proximity sensor so it can turn on automatically when you walk into the room and shut off when you leave. The app also lets you put each outlet on a schedule so it knows when to turn on and off even when you’re away from home.
To be fair, Belkin offers a similar set of features with its own WeMo Switch + Motion, but Belkin is charging $79.99. That’s double what you’ll pay for Nyrius.
If you’re interested you can order Nyrius for $40 on Kickstarter and receive one in May. You can also order in bulk at a discount. Grab two units for $75, three for $110, five for $175, or seven for $235. That’s a pretty good deal if you’re hoping to convert your entire house to a smart home, though it may be worth starting with just one before you make the full commitment.
The company admits that it still needs to put the finishing touches on both the app and the device itself, which makes us think that its promised May release date may be a bit optimistic. If you want something soon we’d recommend picking up a smart outlet that’s available now, but if you’re willing to wait for Nyrius head over to Kickstarter and make a pledge today.