It seems like a logical addition to the Amazon Echo ecosystem: a smart plug that allows "dumb" appliances to work via Alexa voice commands. "Alexa, start the coffeemaker!" "Alexa, turn off the living-room lamp!" And so on.
And, lo, the. Priced at $25, it's one of the many devices introduced at on Thursday. Just plug it into any electrical outlet, plug your lamp or appliance into the new outlet, then pair the Smart Plug to your Echo smart speaker. Great, right?
Right. Except that similar smart plugs have been around for quite some time, and most of the latest models are both Alexa-compatible and less expensive.See it at Amazon
Similarly, the Oukitel WiFi Smart Plug is a double-wide, turning one dumb outlet into two smart ones. It also comes in a two-pack, meaning you get a total of four smart outlets, and currently sells for $33. For a limited time, however, and while supplies last, promo code 4SFJBSPZ gets you out the door for just over $23.See it at Amazon
So, yeah, for less than the price of a single Amazon Smart Plug, you can get as many as four -- and use them with any Google Home devices you might have now or add later. And those are just two examples; hit up Amazon (ironically) and you'll find countless others, many (if not most) priced below $25.
To be sure, Amazon's new Smart Plug does offer one notable advantage: Setup should be available directly through the existing Alexa app, and your existing Amazon account. All of the other third-party options listed above will require you to sign up through the respective manufacturer, and install their various apps. But I'm a DIY kinda guy, so I don't have a problem with jumping through an extra hoop or two, if it gives me more flexibility -- and the ability to pay less.
Updated 4:01 p.m. PT to note potential setup advantages of the Amazon Smart Plug over third-party alternatives.
Originally posted 1:18 p.m. PT
CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our . Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter!