The Best Smartphone-Controlled Gadgets
Sonos PLAY:5 Wireless Speaker System
Sure, your phone can snap filtered pictures and dole out directions, but can it brew your morning coffee? Here, our favorite ways to turn your smartphone into a veritable genius.
By Liz Gumbinner, Publisher CoolMomTech.com
This cool little company continually gets it right. Stream booming audio wirelessly from Pandora, Spotify, iTunes, Sirius XM, or personal playlists on your phone.
Friedrich KuehlAir Conditioner
This new AC lets you turn it on just before you come home from vacation -- while you're still on vacation. Bliss. (And your pets will think so, too.)
Nest Learning Thermostat
A tech-world darling, the Nest learns your favorite climate settings and it adjusts itself when you forget. Best part: You can install it yourself in a snap.
Griffin HELO TC App-Controlled Helicopter
A high-tech take on old-school fun, this copter takes direction from your phone. Download the free app, then play pilot with your iOS or Android device.
$49.99, Griffin Technology
Brew coffee from bed or turn the lights on from the road with this gadget that turns any appliance on or off remotely. (Jane Jetson would approve.)
Appgear Foam Fighter Planes
A gift for the kid who has everything: attach the plane to the back of a phone, which becomes the controller and windshield view for virtual games with up to eight friends.
$9.99 at Think Geek
LodgeNet Mobile App
Soundfreaq Soundkick Wireless Dock System
Whether you're a serious audiophile or just want to listen to NPR at your desk, this is one of our favorite compact speaker systems, all controlled by your phone.
$99.99 at Soundfreaq
Turn virtually any smartphone into a portable gaming system with old school controls. Pac-Man, anyone?
$74.99 at Think Geek
Smarthome LampLinc Insteon Lamp Dimmer
Wirelessly control your lamps to dim, turn on, or turn off. Great for energy saving, but we're picturing how fun it could be on Halloween.
Orbotix Sphero Robotic Gaming System
Unnecessary? Probably. Super fun? Absolutely. Steer it around the house with your phone, or use it as its own controller for all kinds of gaming apps.
Nexia Home Intelligence Security Bundle
A serious home security system with the ability to monitor your home, change settings, and lock or unlock the door from anywhere you've got your phone. Pretty amazing. (Just don't lose your phone!)
$490 plus monthly subscription, Nexia Home
Brookstone Rover App Remote-Controlled Spy Tank with Night Vision
It's a toy. It's a camera. It's a video cam. It's got infrared nightlight vision. And yes, our inner 16-year-old boy totally wants it.
Logitech Mini Boom box for Smartphones
We love the compact size of this mini speaker that lets you stream music right from your iPhone or Android. The rechargeable battery is a huge plus.
iBaby M2 Monitor
See, hear, even talk to your baby from the next room or the next state. This technology gets better and better each year, which is great news for new moms.
$199, iBaby Labs
KJB Digital Wireless Smoke Detector and USB Receiver
This smoke detector is also a James Bondian secret security camera that can stream video to your phone. It's from KJB but we keep calling it KGB.
$299, Surveillance Video
Evoz Baby Monitor
This very cool new baby monitor alternative is in beta now. Download the free app to two Apple devices and watch the little one from anywhere (no distance limits), track sleep data, or get notifications when she cries.
$0-69/mo, My Evoz