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During the summer months, air conditioners are in high demand (Shopping readers have been increasingly drawn to portable ACs as of late) — and especially now as many parts of the country are facing heat waves. From energy-efficient units to models with built-in air purifiers, there are many features to consider when purchasing an air conditioner beyond the size of your space. As experts previously told us, smart air conditioners — like those that can be controlled through an app or are Wi-Fi enabled — are beneficial because you can easily adjust their settings, even when you’re in another room or not home. This means you can cool rooms before you enter them, or turn off your AC if no one is home. Overall, a smart air conditioner might also allow you to cut down on your utility bills since you can schedule it to stop running or keep things a bit warmer when you’re not around.
Smart air conditioners offer convenience, which comes with a higher price tag. And while Amazon Alexa or smart thermostat compatibility, for example, is a feature some prioritize when looking to purchase an air conditioner, experts noted that one of the most important things to consider is picking the right size model for your space. When shopping, keep in mind that an AC unit needs about 20 BTUs (British thermal units) per square foot of living space to keep things cool. To help you upgrade your air conditioner (or finally opt in with a smart option), we rounded up highly-rated smart air conditioners from brands like Honeywell, Evapolar and more, which come in window, portable and personal-sized models.
Best smart air conditioners of 2021
All the smart air conditioners we included below are Wi-Fi enabled, allowing them to be controlled using each brand’s compatible app on your smartphone or tablet (some also have desktop apps). Select air conditioners are also designed to work with smart assistants like Siri, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, so you can change temperature settings, fan speeds and more using voice commands.
Best smart portable air conditioners
In addition to pre-setting cooling schedules using the Honeywell Air Comfort App, this air conditioner is compatible with Amazon Alexa voice commands. It offers 10,000 BTUs of cooling power and is designed with a washable filter, and features three fan speeds and wheels to move it between rooms. The air conditioner’s Smart Digital Thermostat automatically activates the AC based on pre-set room conditions, and it tracks outdoor weather conditions and auto-adjusts accordingly. The air conditioner comes with a remote control, too.
Named the best smart portable air conditioner for large rooms in our guide to portable ACs, this option from De’Longhi can cool rooms up to 500 square feet as it offers 12,500 BTUs. The air conditioner is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant Smart Speakers, and can be controlled through the brand’s app. It can also serve as a dehumidifier and fan, and has a heat mode. You can customize the device’s temperature, fan speed and on/off schedule.
Midea sells Wi-Fi enabled smart air conditioners that cool rooms as large as 200, 275 and 330 square feet. All three models are compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, and can be controlled from the MideaAir app. The air conditioners are designed with a reusable washable filter, and their 24-hour adjustable timer can cool a room to temperatures between 62 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Air conditioners offer three modes to choose from: cooling, dehumidifier and fan only. They also come with a battery-operated remote.
Best smart window air conditioners
You can purchase LG’s Smart Window Air Conditioner with 8,000, 10,000 or 12,000 BTUs of cooling power. They’re compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, and you can adjust devices’ mode and temperature. Air conditioners offer three cooling and fan speeds, as well as an auto cool mode, and they’re Energy Star Certified. Each device comes with a remote control and features a check filter light.
Frigidaire’s air conditioner can be controlled through the brand’s app, and it offers 12,000 BTUs to cool rooms up to 550 square feet. The air conditioner is built with three modes — fan, eco and cool — and you can adjust its temperature and fan speed, too manually or using the app. The window-mounted unit comes with a remote control and plugs into a standard 115V electrical outlet. You can also purchase models with 8,000 and 10,000 BTUs.
You can control this smart AC from Windmill using Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands, as well as the brand’s app. It cools rooms up to 350 square feet using 8,300 BTUs and plugs into a standard 115V outlet. The air conditioner offers three cooling and three fan settings, and its LED display fades after 60 seconds so it won’t disturb you while you sleep. It comes with a remote as well, and is designed with a removable magnetic front panel so you can easily change or clean the filter.
Best smart personal air conditioner
Evapolar’s evaSMART personal air conditioner can be powered by a USB power bank, a laptop or an outlet, and you can control it using the brand’s app or compatible voice assistants. It's an evaporative air cooler, so you need to fill its removable water tank before use. Beyond chilling, purifying and humidifying air, the device features multi-colored lights. It’s available in two colors: Opaque White and Stormy Grey.
Best smart air conditioner accessories
According to tech expert Whitson Gordon, you can use the Sensibo Sky to control compatible window air conditioners built without “smart” features. “If your unit has an infrared remote, it's probably compatible with the Sensibo Sky, which mounts on your wall and sends commands to your air conditioner over the same signal — but with the addition of voice control, automation and other smart features,” Gordon said. Once you install the device and download the brand’s app, you can control your window air condition from your smartphone — Sensibo also offers a desktop app. It’s also compatible with Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant.
Gordon said the Kasa Smart Plug Mini is compatible with most devices “that plug into the wall and use a physical switch to turn on and off,” like some air conditioners. Once you connect a device to the smart plug, you can control it using the Kasa app. This smart plug requires a secured 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi network connection, and it works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Microsoft Cortana supported devices. It’s compact design also won’t block the other wall outlet, as well.