’Tis the season for ghosts, witches and jack-o’-lanterns. And while decking out your home with Halloween staples like window decals and stuffed scarecrows is perfectly fine, we think it’s time you step up your game. Add spook to your entryway with Halloween-colored lights, hide a speaker playing creepy sounds or set up a motion sensor that activates an animated skeleton.
Traditional, analog decorating is fine (click here for ideas), but we’ve rounded up 10 gadgets that will kick your Halloween decor up a notch.
The Phillips Hue line of smart lighting is one of the most versatile and customizable ways to light up your home, be it for Halloween or everyday use. Phillips has starter kits that include LED color bulbs and the Hue Bridge, or you can pick up a Hue Bridge on its own and add bulbs, light strips and even motion sensors to trigger your spooky Halloween scenes.
Use the mobile app to create and fine-tune your own custom scenes and lighting schedules. In fact, Phillips has Halloween scenes you can use with your Hue lights.
Wyze made a name for itself with its $20 home security cameras. The company has since expanded its product lineup to include smart plugs, light bulbs and sensors.
What’s a spooky setting without creepy sounds? Sonos speakers sound amazing, but also integrate with the major streaming music services — all of which have Halloween inspired songs and horror sound effects. Any Sonos will do, but the $179 One SL is small enough to hide in a corner. If you want to completely cut the cord, Sonos just released the $399.99 Move, which is battery powered.
An Addams Family chime that works on any of Ring’s video cameras or doorbells has been released in time for Halloween. (The release was also timed to promote “The Addams Family,” a movie coming to theaters on Oct. 11).
The finger snapping chime can be set as the alert tone whenever any of Ring’s cameras detect motion or when someone rings your doorbell. For those who don’t own a Ring product, the recently announced $59.99 Ring Indoor Cam is an excellent starting point. Or you can pick up a Ring Video Doorbell for $99.99.
Better yet, you can use the two-way audio feature on your Ring camera to scare people as they walk past. You know, if you’re into that kind of thing.
NanoLeaf’s light panels, which are controlled from your phone, can be arranged on your wall in creative patterns. There’s no hub required, just the panels and a phone to control the colors. You can even use Alexa, Siri or Google Assistant to fine-tune the colors or turn them off.
If you want a rugged, portable speaker that you can leave outside, the $79.99 Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 fits the bill. It’s small enough to fit inside a pumpkin, and you don’t have to worry about any potental rain, thanks to its IP67 waterproof rating. With 13 hours of battery life, you can stream your favorite Halloween playlist throughout the night without having to worry about charging it. If you want spooky tunes in stereo, buy two Wonderboom 2s and link them.
The $17.99 Samsung SmartThings Wi-Fi Smart Plug integrates with the rest of the SmartThings platform even if you don’t have a SmartThings hub. You can set timers, schedules and control the plug via the SmartThings app on your iPhone or Android device. Plug in lights, a speaker, a misting cauldron — whatever you want — and let the plug take care of the rest.
LIFX bulbs are on sale in anticipation of Halloween. They feature tiles that are similar to the Nanoleaf, along with colored bulbs that work much like the Phillips Hue lineup, only without requiring a bridge. You can buy a light tile for $69.99 or a kit of three tiles for $109.99. There’s also a mini colored light bulb that will set you back $34.99, along with what’s best described as a light bar, called Beam, for $129.99.
You can control and tune the lights using the LIFX app, or connect them to other smart home platforms like Google Assistant, Alexa and SmartThings.
Pair Nest’s video doorbell Hello with the Nest Hub and you don’t have to wonder when trick or treaters approach your front door. Just ask Google to show your front door and a live feed from your doorbell will show up. Better yet, your Nest Hello will keep an eye on your decorations and pumpkins long after you’ve stopped handing out candy.
Blast your favorite horror flicks on your garage door for all to watch using the Nebula Capsule projector. The $299.99 Nebula Capsule runs Android, connects via Wi-Fi and will stream directly from Netflix or YouTube. It will project an image up to 100 inches and is built for outdoor use. If you have a collection of movies you want to play, you can connect a computer to it using USB or HDMI.
The best part about using smart home products to spice your spooky decor is that you don’t have to put them away after Halloween ends. Everything we found can be used year round.
Note: The prices above reflect the retailer’s listed price at the time of publication.