There’s no shortage of smart thermostats on the market. With Google Nest, Emerson Sensi Touch, Nanoleaf and others, this market is hard to break into. However, Ecobee has made quite a name for itself over the past few years and has become one of the top providers of smart thermostats in the industry. Now, it has raised the bar with a new Ecobee Smart Thermostat. Want to learn more? Keep reading for the full Ecobee Smart Thermostat Review.
What Is the Smart Thermostat?
The Smart Thermostat, which is priced at $245, is the latest in the Canadian company’s line of smart thermostats. It came to the market just two years after the Ecobee4 hit store shelves. Simply looking at the Ecobee Smart Thermostat, it would appear that there’s very little difference between it and the previous model. However, the Smart Thermostat has a fully functioning built-in speaker with Alexa support and a few other upgrades compared to the Ecobee4.
Upgrades Over the Ecobee4
Obviously, the biggest upgrade is the ability to control the Smart Thermostat with your voice assistant. The integrated speaker also means that the thermostat can talk back to you. This makes it easy to get a reading of the temperature even if you can’t see the display. However, these aren’t the only upgrades that make it better than the Ecobee4.
It’s important to clarify that the Ecobee4 does have Alexa support. However, it was merely compatible with Alexa-enabled devices. The new Smart thermostat has Alexa built into it, allowing you to use the assistant to control your thermostat from the device itself.
Also, the overall look of the Smart Thermostat has been improved. It features a gloss finish instead of the plastic one that the Ecobee4 had. Although small, this change makes the device much more attractive to hang on your wall.
The manufacturer upgraded the Wi-Fi capabilities of the Smart Thermostat as well. Instead of just 2.4 GHz frequencies, it also supports 5 GHz frequencies. Of course, this improvement is almost necessary when you consider that it’s been nearly two years since the Ecobee4 was released.
In addition, other minor improvements have been made. For example, the quality of the onboard microphone is better, making it easier to communicate with Alexa. It has an improved speaker as a result of the addition of Alexa too. The manufacturer has even completely redesigned the temperature sensor to make it more accurate.
What Comes in the Box?
Everything that you need to hook up the SmartThermostat is in the box. When you open it, you’ll find:
- Smart Thermostat device
- Room temperature sensor
- Mounting bracket
- Power extender kit
- Manual and setup guide
The addition of the room temperature sensor is a nice touch. You can place it in another room to balance the temperature throughout your home better. Best of all, the sensor battery will last for five years, so you don’t have to worry about replacing it very often. Keep reading the Ecobee Smart thermostat review to learn about its key features.
Full Alexa Support
One of my favorite features of the Smart Thermostat is the full Alexa support. You can basically do anything with it that you can do with an Amazon Echo products.
For example, you can use it to play music, listen to the news or set a timer. On top of this, you can control the temperature in your house via your voice. Because of that, it’s easy to see the temperature on this thermostat.
It’s understandable that not everyone will use the thermostat as an extra music speaker or a cooking timer. However, having the extra functionality isn’t a bad thing and left me impressed. Of course, the speaker quality on the SmartThermostat still wasn’t the manufacturer’s first priority. As a result, don’t expect to get the same level of sound quality out of this speaker as you would an Echo Dot or similar device.
Voice Control Limited by House Design
The design behind the Smart Thermostat isn’t perfect. Its ability to effectively recognize your voice depends heavily on the layout of your house. For example, if your thermostat is in your living room, it might not accurately pick you up if you’re in the kitchen. This functionality is dependent upon the distance between these rooms.
Despite that, this won’t be an issue for everyone. The layout of your home will determine how far away you can control your thermostat. What was an issue for me might not be a problem for someone whose home has a more open floor plan.
How to Control Your SmartThermostat With Voice Commands
How you control your Smart Thermostat will depend heavily on the virtual assistant that you use. If you’re using Google Assistant, all of your commands will start with, “Hey Google” or “OK Google.” With Alexa, you only have to say, “Alexa.” The same goes for using it with Siri.
Beyond that, the overall commands are very similar. To check the current temperature, for example, you wake the device with either Alexa or Google Assistant. Then, you say, “What’s the thermostat temperature?” You can view a full list of the Alexa and Google Assistant commands on the manufacturer’s website.
Is It Worth the Investment
Yes, the Smart Thermostat is worth the investment. One reason is that it will last many years. The manufacturer has a proven track record of releasing firmware updates for all of its hardware. You can rest assured that you’ll get your money’s worth out of this device.
Of course, most smart thermostats are worth the investment anyway. The reason is that they help you save money on your heating and cooling costs. On average, the Smart Thermostat saves homeowners around 23% on annual cooling costs. Because of this, it pays for itself over time.
Ecobee Smart Thermostat Review Wrap up
For some homeowners, the built-in Alexa support in the SmartThermostat is enough to make upgrading from the Ecobee4 worth it. For others, there might not be enough different in the new device to warrant the upgrade if they already own a smart thermostat. If you don’t own a smart thermostat, though, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t start with the Smart Thermostat.
This device lets you adjust the temperature via voice and works with the most popular smart assistants, including Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant. The biggest drawback is that the voice functionality depends on the layout of your home. Depending on where your thermostat is located, it might be hard to control it with the sound of your voice. Beyond that, the Smart Thermostat is a solid device that’s well worth the purchase for anyone who’s in the market for a smart thermostat
Buying the Ecobee Smart Thermostat with Voice Control
- Ecobee Smart Thermostat with Voice Control at Amazon – $244.89
- Ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat at Best Buy – $169.99
- Ecobee – Smart Thermostat with Voice Control at Best Buy – $249.99
Did you enjoy our Ecobee Smart thermostat review? If so, read some of our other reviews to learn how to turn your home into a smart home.
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