This story is part ofwhere our editors bring you the latest news and the hottest gadgets of the completely virtual CES 2021.
Lutron has been longThanks in no small part to the exclusive, super reliable radio signals that the Caséta systems use for communication. But for all its fancy , and , Lutron Caséta never had a good option to put outside light under the control of the system – at least until .
The key product in question is the Lutron Outdoor Socket, a $ 80 smart socket built to wirelessly connect to your phone while withstanding the elements. Just plug it into a power source and pair it with the Lutron Bridge using the Lutron app on your Android or iOS device, then plug whatever you like in the back of it – yard lights, landing lights, machine water pump, lawn ornaments with fancy inflatable arms, you name it. From there, you’ll be able to use the app to remotely turn the plug on and off, or automatically turn it on and off automatically at specific times, including sunset.
“It’s basically weatherproof, dustproof, and sun resistant,” said Matt Swatsky, vice president of the mid-range residential business at Lutron. “Homeowners can now enjoy all the benefits of the Caséta system for their outer space.”
Like other Lutron devices, the new plug promises to work well with many smart home platforms, including Ring, as well as Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Assistant for voice control. Just know that you will need to plug the Lutron Bridge into your router to use it – non-Lutron users will be better off withas WeMo outdoor plug, works right out of the box, no hub is required.
I will also note that Lutron’s plug includes only one socket that can automate, while that WeMo plug and others like it, including, usually includes two. That seems rather stingy to me given the $ 80 price tag, especially since those competitors are all at least half the price of what Lutron is asking for here. Another recent option, , the price is only $ 11.
Still, Lutron’s still has a great track record in the smart home arena and an impressive list of third-party integrations has long been around. If you love your Lutron setup and you want to add outdoor lights to a foldable display, then Lutron’s single-style plug is probably the product you’ve been waiting for. You’ll find it on sale this March at Amazon, Best Buy, Home Depot and Lowe’s, as well as select power and A / V distributors.