Review: Wyze Thermostat is a little too basic for $71


I don’t recommend the Wyze Thermostat to most folks looking for a streamlined smart thermostat. Its $71 price is appealing for an app-enabled thermostat and the Wyze app’s step-by-step tutorial makes it easy to install and set up. You can also control the thermostat using Alexa or Google Assistant voice commands if you have a compatible smart speaker or display. 

While the thermostat looks nice at a glance, the control dial is finicky and difficult to use. The Wyze thermostat’s electrical ports are built into the wall plate so you have to install the wall plate, even if you prefer a more minimal look. You’ll also either need a C-wire or to use the included C-wire adapter to install this thermostat, which could complicate things, depending on your level of comfort with electrical wiring

It’s a fine thermostat for the most part, but this is the first Wyze product I’ve tested that just isn’t quite worth the price. I’d hold off to see how Amazon’s $60 Smart Thermostat performs. 

Like

  • Easy to adjust the temperature in the Wyze app
  • Good price for a smart thermostat
  • Works with Alexa and Google Assistant smart speakers and displays

Don’t Like

  • The hardware design could be better
  • You have to have a C-wire or install a C-wire adapter (included)
  • No compatibility with Apple HomeKit

An overview of the Wyze Thermostat 

There are a number of affordable home security cameras, LED bulbs and other home products on the market today. Smart thermostats are still largely stuck in the luxury price tier. Both Nest and Ecobee’s flagship app-enabled thermostats cost $250. Their less expensive offerings are priced at $130 and $180, respectively. The Honeywell Home T9 retails for $200 and many other competitors cost at least 100 bucks. 

When Wyze announced a $71 thermostat that works with the Wyze app and Alexa, I had high hopes. The startup’s reputation for delivering affordable devices that often perform just as well as (and occasionally better than) their pricier counterparts, made the Wyze Thermostat even more intriguing. 

Unfortunately, the Wyze Thermostat was just so-so overall. I like that the app provides detailed step-by-step instructions to install and configure the thermostat. Learn more about installing thermostats here. Always consult a professional electrician if you have any questions or concerns about your particular setup.

wyzethermostat3

Download the Wyze app and follow the steps to install the thermostat.


Screenshots by Megan Wollerton/CNET

It took me about 10 minutes to install the Wyze Thermostat from start to finish, but I got lucky and didn’t have to drill new holes. My thermostat wiring includes a C-wire, too, which also helped things move more quickly. If you don’t have a C-wire, you’ll have to install the C-wire adapter Wyze includes with your purchase, but that requires more involved electrical work. (Check out Wyze’s guide to installing the C-wire adapter.) 

I also thought it was strange that the wiring ports are built into the wall plate, so you can’t install the thermostat without it. Normally the wall plate is an optional accessory. You’d use it cover old holes or paint, but if you don’t need to do that, a lot of people opt to install their thermostats without one. It’s a minor gripe, but Nest and Ecobee thermostats offer wall plates as optional add-ons that aren’t tied into the thermostat wiring. That said, Google charges $15 for a Nest wall plate, so if you do want one, Wyze at least includes it with your purchase. 

Once I installed the thermostat I tested out adjusting the temperature via the Wyze app, with Alexa voice commands — and directly at the thermostat itself. It’s easy to adjust the thermostat and set heating and cooling schedules in the app. It also responded to my voice commands via an Echo Show 8 smart display. The control dial on the thermostat itself didn’t work as well as I hoped. You turn the dial to adjust the thermostat and then press down to confirm the change. Every time I pressed down on the dial it felt flimsy, like it was going to break. 

If you mainly plan to make adjustments in the app or with voice commands, the fiddly control dial might not matter much. 

wyze-thermostat-1

You have to press in the dial to make a selection. That part didn’t work very well.


Chris Monroe/CNET

The verdict

The Wyze Thermostat is a decent product, but it doesn’t offer the typical value of some of the company’s other devices. If you have a C-wire (and you’re comfortable with basic electrical work), this thermostat is easy to install and the instructions in the app are thorough. After the installation, it’s easy to change the temperature, check settings and more in the app. The Alexa voice commands I used to adjust the temperature worked well, too. The design is just ok, but if you don’t plan to make adjustments at the thermostat, the $71 Wyze Thermostat might be worth it. Otherwise, if you’re in the market for a lower-cost connected thermostat, I’d wait to see how Amazon’s $60 Smart Thermostat compares.



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