Gadget Review: Globe Electric smart home products

As voice-assistant compatible devices, they are easy to turn on and off verbally if you have Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa

By , Columnist

Images © Globe Electric All rights reserved.

Near the end of 2019 this column included a review of a white-light smart bulb by Canadian technology company Globe Electric. After seeing the review, Globe sent the Gadget Inspector some of their other smart home products for review. Here are our thoughts.

Multicolor Changing RGB Dimmable LED Strip Light

Globe offers multicolored strip lights in lengths of 2.0 m and 5.0 m. These products essentially consist of one long electrical circuit that illuminates small LEDs located a few millimeters apart. Power is supplied via a USB plug but you have to supply your own mains adapter for this.

lightstrip380.jpgGlobe's lights can produce one color continuously or cycle through a range of colors. The color and brightness of the lights can be changed using the Globe Suite app or either Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. The app also has settings for making the lights turn on and off on a schedule.

Because Globe's products connect directly to Wi-Fi, there is no hub involved so the process of setting them up is quick and easy. In my tests I found dimming the lights using the app produced some minor glitches. Even so, it was easy to make adjustments because the controls and options are clearly laid out.

Running along the back of the strip is sticky tape so the lights can be attached to vertical or horizontal surfaces, including under shelves.

Unfortunately, the sample I received developed a loose connection after being rolled up between tests and didn't work properly after that. If handled with care, though, these light strips are a fun way to add colored lights to any room.

4-Outlet Grounded Independently Controlled Surge Protector 2 USB Port Power Strip

With so many electronic devices now in homes, everyone needs power strips. When combined with the Globe Suite app, this power strip has an advantage over conventional power strips because it is possible to turn any plugged-in devices on and off individually over WiFi rather than having to turn off the bar itself by hand.

powerstrip380.jpgThe strip includes four three-pin sockets and two 2.1A USB ports for charging or powering devices such as a Roku Streaming Stick or Chromecast. The USB ports cannot be turned on and off but most uses they are likely to be put to won't benefit from that feature.

The cable that connects the bar to a mains outlet is 4 feet long, which is adequate for most situations, while the bar itself feels light but solid and well-made. It is surge protected, too, but only to 300 joules it is not be the ideal choice for the office computer.

Smart Door and Window Sensor

Unlike the other devices reviewed here, the Smart Door and Window Sensor is triggered by an event rather than manually. It works like a sensor that detects when a window or door has been opened, consisting of two components that sit side-by-side, one on the door or window and one on the frame. When the signal that passes between these is broken by someone opening the door or window, an alert is triggered.

sensorcrop380.jpgIn a conventional sensor, that is usually an alarm sound. Globe's sensory, however, sends a signal to the Globe Suite app on the mobile devices it is installed on, causing a notification to appear on screen. The obvious advantage is that the device owner gets alerted even if they are not at home as long as they have a Wi-Fi or data connection.

I had some issues getting the notifications to appear on my devices until a Globe support rep pointed me to the Push Notifications setting in the app, which is atypically located under the Profile tab. Once I had Push Notifications turned on, though, I was able to get alerts if the door or window to which the sensor was attached was opened or closed. The is also a setting to get the sensor to send and alert if its battery is getting low.

The sensor comes with double-sided foam stickers for attaching to a door or window frame, and screws for more secure attachment. I found when running my tests that it is import to ensure that the two parts of the sensor are properly aligned before sticking them to the wall permanently. On my first attempt, one component was about a millimeter too high because the door wasn't perfectly in line with the door fame. As a result, the sensor registered the door as permanently open. Once I had them properly aligned, however, the sensor worked like a charm.

Wi-Fi Smart 60W Equivalent Multicolor Changing RGB Tunable White Dimmable Frosted LED Light Bulb

Like Globe's Strip Light, it's Multicolor Frosted LED Light Bulb can add variety to the lighting of any room and set different ambiences depending on the color of the light it gives off. It screws into a light fixture like a standard bulb and can give off white light, too, when needed.

bulb380.jpgAs we noted in our review of Globe's Soft White Dimmable Frosted LED Light Bulb, pairing Globe's smart bulbs with its Globe Suite app is a piece of cake: turn it on and off three times, enter the W-Fi password and you're done. There is no hub to set up, no QR codes to scan and the app provides clear step-by-step instructions. The whole process a breeze compared with what I've had to do with some other smart bulbs that I've tried.

The Globe Suite app also offers an impressive variety of adjustments to features such as brightness, hue, Scenes, routines and the speed at which the bulb cycles through its range of colors if it is set to do that. As it is voice-assistant compatible, it is also easy to turn on and off verbally if you have Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa available and you have linked your Globe account with either of these services.

In addition to the products reviewed above, Globe Electric also sent us their Smart Dimmer Switch but we were unable to test this product.

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Michael Simpson is a freelance writer, editor, presenter, researcher, instructor, gadget freak and sci-tech consultant based in British Columbia’s beautiful Okanagan Valley. Formerly from the UK, he’s converted from tea to coffee and written and presented on film, TV, science, nature, technology,…

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