Smart plugs are an essential part of any smart home build. In my book, The Smart Home Manual, I include smart plugs as part of the basics for those wanting to get into automating their homes. This is why there are so many smart plugs out there in the market. Search for a smart plug on Amazon and prepare to be inundated with products from all kinds of countries. There are only a few out there that I would add to my home, however. Is the Shelly Plug US one of them? Let’s see!
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Editor’s Note: Shelly has released an updated version of this smart plug. You can read my review of the Shelly Plus Plug US here.
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Shelly Plug US purchase background
Why did I buy a Shelly Plug US? Well, I’m always on the lookout for smart plugs because they help me automate a whole bunch of things. I was interested in automating some Christmas lights and turning off my subwoofer when it isn’t being used. So, I started looking to buy a couple of smart plugs again.
Shelly Plug US Specs
|Device Power Consumption
|< 1 W
|REST, MQTT, Cloud, App
|2.75 x 1.75 x 1.75 in.
The key things for me in the specs are the fact that this plug has power monitoring, supports 15A of load (what most US household circuits can handle), and having the ability to be controlled locally (REST, MQTT). You can, however, control the Shelly Plug US in the cloud.
Why I Chose the Shelly Plug US
As I mentioned earlier, there are a lot of good smart plugs in the market. I’ve previously reviewed TP-Link (Kasa) and Gosund smart plugs. Although the Gosund plugs work fine and are really compact, I prefer smart plugs that are controllable locally. I know you can flash the Gosund with Tasmota to make them locally controllable, but I didn’t want to have to do that. The TP-link smart plugs tick most of the boxes when it comes to smart plugs. Out of the box they are locally controllable, have a native integration with Home Assistant, and are a reliable brand.
I decided to go with Shelly’s anyway for the following reasons:
- They are locally controllable in multiple ways (REST, MQTT) out of the box.
- They are inexpensive. You can buy 2 for less than $25.00.
- They have a good form factor and don’t block outlets.
- They have a native integration with Home Assistant.
- I’ve had a good experience with Shelly products like the Shelly 1 relay, the Shelly RGBW2 LED controller, Shelly smart bulbs, the Shelly Dimmer 2, and the Shelly Flood sensor.
- They have built-in power monitoring. None of the other inexpensive smart plugs have this feature.
Shelly Plug US setup
Setting up the Shelly Plug US is much very much like setting up other Shelly products. You plug them in and then you can connect to and configure them using the mobile app or by connecting directly to the internal webserver. I don’t use the app and I connect to the device directly using the same instructions I outlined here for the Shelly 1.
Once you have it configured, you can operate it pretty easily. You can just press the blue button in the picture above to turn the switch on and off. You can also see the power being used (17 W above).
The Shelly Plug US also has some tricks up its sleeve. You can trigger actions (via REST URLs) whenever the power button on the device is pressed, or when the device is turned on or turned off. You can schedule the device to come on according to a schedule, and you can set a timer for how long it is on. In some ways, it’s a lightweight smart home hub.
Shelly Plug US Home Assistant integration
I used to integrate all my Shelly products with Home Assistant using MQTT. Now Shelly has direct integration with Home Assistant. You simply add the Shelly integration which will automatically discover and configure you Shelly. It creates entities for controlling the device and monitoring the power. Easy as it gets!
This will be my go-to smart plug going forward. You can’t beat the price, it does energy monitoring, integrates directly with Home Assistant locally, and is reliable. If you are looking for a smart plug, the Shelly Plug US is one to seriously consider.