Elgato Eve Energy can make any plugged appliance smart

We may receive a commission on purchases made from links.

The recent surge of Internet-connected appliances and home electronics is leaving out a lot of people who are wary of giving up their favorite living room companion for something newer, smarter, but also more unfamiliar. There are, however, a few gadgets available that offer a compromise. Elgato's latest member of its Eve line is one of those. The Eve Energy is a simple yet elegant small box that sits between the wall socket and any traditional appliance, connecting the latter to your iPhone or iPad via the magic of Apple's HomeKit platform.

Elgato has been making HomeKit accessories, which it has dubbed "Eve", ever since Apple opened the flood gates of its smart home platform. Last year, it launched the door and window monitor pair, followed by Room and Weather monitoring boxes. But while those devices are smart things in themselves, Eve Energy's mission is to make others smarter.

While Eve Energy won't be able to finely control your appliance, it can at least switch them on and off. You do that through a variety of channels available, all woven together through HomeKit. You can directly control Eve Energy with a tap on your iPhone or iPad or even using Siri voice commands, as the Energy connects via Bluetooth Low Energy. You can even coordinate all HomeKit-enabled devices inside your home around certain themes and activities. Perhaps more interesting, you can also control anything connected to Eve Energy even when you're not at home with remote access via an Apple TV.

The Elgato Eve Energy is just one of the newer breed of IoT devices that empower even conventional appliances and electronics to join in the smart home fun without needing an upgrade or a more expensive replacement. For all of that power, the Eve Energy only costs $49.95, available from both Elgato's online store and Amazon.com. The Eve app is, of course, available for free.

Interested buyers should note some of Eve Energy requirements, however. While HomeKit itself only require iOS 8.1 at the very least, Eve Energy does need an iPad, iPhone, or even iPod Touch running on iOS 9.1 minimum. The remote access feature also needs a 3rd gen or later Apple TV running tvOS 7.0 or later.