Eve (formerly Elgato) has been releasing a solid line of HomeKit-compatible home automation devices lately, and the latest to show up at AWT Labs for testing is the Eve Energy Strip (US$99.95). It’s a three-outlet power strip, and before you say “$100 is a LOT for a power strip”, you must realize that this is a smart power strip featuring the ease and security of HomeKit setup that also includes surge protection. Let’s take a look.
While there’s not a lot a designer can do with a power strip, it’s obvious that the team at Eve Home decided to add as much pizazz as possible to the Energy Strip. It’s encased in a brushed aluminum casing with beveled edges and has a black face featuring the three grounded outlets, three bright LEDs/buttons showing which outlets are turned on, and LEDs to assure the user that all connected appliances are properly grounded and that surge protection is enabled. The design was solid enough to win the Energy Strip a 2019 RedDot Design Award.
While many people just toss these power strips onto the floor, the Eve Energy Strip has a screw mounting option for walls or desks. The very solid power cable is 190 cm (6.3 feet) long and also features a grounded plug. If you do place the power strip onto a desk or table top, there are six small rubber feet on the back to keep it from moving.
Those three LED/buttons I was referring to earlier can be used to manually turn on the appropriate outlet, and they display a single, double or triple dot pattern to signify which outlet is turned on. The buttons can also be used to reset the device for pairing.
One feature that most people will love — but will probably not recognize at first glance — is that the three grounded outlets are widely spaced. This Energy Strip is perfect for powering those devices that have large power adapters.
As with all HomeKit devices, setup is fast and easy. Plug in the Eve Energy Strip, and the Eve app or Apple’s Home app can be used to add the strip to the network. Setup took about a minute, and then there was a firmware update to apply that added about another 30 seconds to the process.
Once paired, the Energy Strip can be added to a room, and each outlet can be given a unique name if needed. One thing that is quite powerful about the Eve Energy Strip and Eve app is that if electricity pricing is set up in the General Settings of the app, the app can project the cost to run the appliances attached to the Energy Strip based on consumption in the last minute, day or week.
The Energy Strip can also be useful in households with young children, as there is a Child Lock function that can be enabled for the full strip. Your devices are also given a full 30,000 Amps of surge protection.
The Eve Energy Strip is a solid and good looking power strip featuring HomeKit compatibility. It works well and has been designed to last. However, it is quite a bit more expensive than most power strips offering surge protection, and potential buyers should consider if the extra cost is worth the convenience of being able to control the strip from any Apple device using HomeKit and Siri.