On our latest IoT Podcast, Joshua called into our Voicemail Hotline with a question about low-cost Wi-Fi switches he saw at Walmart. They’re made by Merkury Innovations and cost under $19. Joshua isn’t familiar with the brand and wanted to know more about it, so we shared just that.
Stacey previously bought a Merkury Innovations smart outlet and found that the company’s Geeni app was acceptable: Not great but not bad. Tuya, which is based in China and is one of the largest smart home device platforms in the world, provides the software platform.
Normally, we’d shy away from smart products with a Chinese-centric company behind them but this isn’t a “no-name” brand around the world. As such, I wouldn’t be too concerned about using Merkury Innovations products. Yes, some of your device data may go to servers in China, but Stacey didn’t see anything nefarious about this when using her smart switch. Of course, this is a personal decision: You have to decide if you’re comfortable with where your home’s data goes.
Since the Merkury Innovations light switch uses Wi-Fi, you don’t need a hub in your home to use it. And if the Geeni app isn’t your thing, the product does integrate with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control. If you can live with a basic app experience and trust that your data going to China is safe and secure, this Wi-Fi switch on the cheap may be worth the look.
To hear Joshua’s question in full, as well as our discussion, tune in to the IoT Podcast below: