a photo of a college dorm room with smart and connected devices.

Ultimate Guide to Building a Smart Dorm Room for College Students

Transform Your Dorm: Essential Smart Devices for College Students

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Even though the school year just ended, for some planning to go to college in a few weeks, it's time to start thinking about what you need for your dorm room. There are the usual items like towels, bedding, and a laptop. But what about creating a smart dorm room that can make college life more comfortable, efficient, and enjoyable? We know from experience that with the right combination of smart devices and connected products, you can transform your dorm into a high-tech haven that supports your academic and personal needs. Here's our comprehensive guide to building a smart dorm room, assuming you already have the essentials like a laptop, printer, and smartphone.

Smart Lights

a photo of a gaming station with nanoleaf smart lightstripsBest Buy Black Friday Deals: See early deals for Smart Home Devices on sale now Nanoleaf

Smart lights are a must-have for any smart dorm room. They allow you to control your lighting through your smartphone or voice commands, making it easy to adjust the ambiance without getting up from your desk or bed. Here are some top features to consider:

  • Color changing: Choose lights that can change colors to suit your mood or activity.
  • Dimming capabilities: Adjust the brightness to reduce eye strain while studying or to create a relaxing atmosphere.
  • Scheduling and automation: Set schedules for your lights to turn on or off at specific times, helping you wake up in the morning or wind down at night.
  • Resource:Five questions to ask before buying your first smart lights and The Best Smart Light Systems

Smart Plugs

EZVIZ T30 Smart Plug in a wall outlet.EZVIZ T30 10B-US Smart Plug GearBrain

Smart plugs are small devices that plug into your existing outlets, allowing you to control connected appliances with your phone or voice. Use them to:

Smart Speakers

Amazon Echo Show 8The Echo Show 8 smart display by Amazon Amazon

Smart speakers and displays are excellent additions to a smart dorm room, offering hands-free convenience and enhanced functionality. With voice commands, you can control other smart devices, play music, set alarms, get homework help, and even order food. They integrate seamlessly with smart lights, plugs, and more, making your dorm room more efficient and comfortable.


Portable Bluetooth Speakers

a person holding a Sonos Roam 2 Portable Wireless SpeakerSonos launches the Sonos Roam 2 Portable Wireless Speaker Sonos

Portable Bluetooth speakers are perfect for students who love to take their music on the go or host small gatherings in their dorm room. Look for speakers with:

  • Long battery life: Ensure they last through your study sessions or social events.
  • Durable design: Choose waterproof or rugged speakers for extra protection.
  • High-quality sound: Opt for speakers with clear and powerful audio.

Connected Soundbar

A connected soundbar can enhance your smart TV experience, providing better sound quality for movies, music, and gaming. Features to consider include:

Portable Chargers

a photo of PowerThru by CASETiFY collection PowerThru by CASETiFY collection CASETiFY

Keeping your devices charged is crucial, especially when on the go. Portable chargers ensure your smartphone, tablet, and other gadgets have enough power throughout the day. Look for chargers with:

Smart Air Purifier

a photo of Airthings Renew Air Purifier in a room plugged in and cleaning the air.Airthings Renew Air Purifier GearBrain

A smart air purifier helps maintain clean air in your dorm, which is especially important in shared living spaces. Features to consider include:

Smart Coffee Maker

a product shot of Keurig K-Supreme Plus SMART coffee makerKeurig K-Supreme Plus SMART coffee maker Keurig

For coffee lovers, a smart coffee maker can be a game-changer. It allows you to brew coffee remotely and schedule brewing times. Look for models with:

  • Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity: Control the coffee maker through an app.
  • Customizable brew settings: Adjust the strength and size of your coffee.
  • Compatibility with smart home systems: Integrate with your existing smart home ecosystem for voice control.
  • Resource: 5 Best Gadgets to up your coffee game

Smart TV with Built-in Streaming Capabilities

Samsung Smart MonitorNew Samsung Smart Monitor doubles as PC screen and smart TV for your home office Samsung

A smart TV with built-in streaming capabilities is perfect for entertainment. It allows you to access your favorite streaming services without needing extra devices. Key features include:

Robotic Vacuum with Mopping and Self-Emptying Station

a photo of TP-Link Tapo RV10 Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop + Smart Auto-Empty Dock on the floorTP-Link Tapo RV10 Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop + Smart Auto-Empty Dock Review GearBrain

Keeping your dorm clean can be hassle-free with a robotic vacuum that mops and vacuums. Look for models that:

Extra Charging Cables

a photo of Atom flat and weight USC-C to lighting cableAtom flat and weight USC-C to lighting cable unboxedGearBrain

Ensure you have extra charging cables for your smartphone and other wireless devices. Opt for:

  • Durable materials: Braided or reinforced cables for longevity.
  • Variety of lengths: Different lengths for various situations, such as bedside charging or longer reach from outlets.

Docking Station

Photo of Plugable demonstrating how to connect 4 monitors from one docking stationPlugab Plugable'sbolt 4 Quad Docking Station allows you to connect to 4 monitors in one docking station. GearBrai

A good docking station can expand your laptop's connectivity options. Look for one with:

Plugable 4K Docking Station Triple Monitor with 100W Power Delivery, USB-C Dock for Thunderbolt and USB-C Windows and Mac M1 M2 M3 (3X HDMI, DisplayPort, 1x USB-C, USB 3.0, SD Card)

Wireless Keyboard and Mouse

a photo of Logitech Wave Keys Ergonomic Keyboard Graphite on a deskLogitech Wave Keys Ergonomic Keyboard - Graphite Logitech

A wireless keyboard and mouse are essential for comfortable typing and navigation. Ensure they are:

  • Compatible with your laptop or computer: Check for compatibility before purchasing.
  • Ergonomic design: Reduce strain during long study sessions.
  • Long battery life: Avoid frequent recharging.

BACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer

photo of BACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer and boxBACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer Via cnet.com

A BACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer is a valuable tool for staying safe. It connects to your smartphone and provides accurate blood alcohol content (BAC) readings. It's useful for:

  • Ensuring you are safe to drive: Make informed decisions after social events.
  • Monitoring your alcohol consumption: Stay aware of your drinking habits.


Sonos Ace Headphone unboxed.Sonos Ace headphones unboxed GearBrain

Having both over-the-ear headphones and wireless earbuds ensures you're covered for different situations. Consider

Smart Alarm Clock

Photo of Lenovo Smart Clock Gen 2  with charging padLenovo Smart Clock 2 is a new and improved version of the original Lenovo smart clock. GearBrai

A smart alarm clock can help you wake up more effectively and start your day on the right foot. Features to look for include:

  • Gradual wake-up light: Simulate a natural sunrise to wake you gently.
  • Multiple alarms: Set different alarms for weekdays and weekends.
  • Integration with smart home systems: Control your alarms with voice commands.

Gaming ConsoleGaming Console:

PlayStation 5The PS5 is one of the best-selling game consoles and a great gift for your friend who is a gamer. Sony

If you are a gamer, a gaming console like the Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5 is a must-have. These consoles offer stunning graphics, a wide range of games, and streaming capabilities, making them a great addition to your dorm entertainment system.

Resource:Best Gaming Consoles of 2024, Xbox Series X vs PlayStation 5: How the consoles compare, and 5 Gaming Gadgets to Take with You on Long Flights


Building a smart dorm room involves selecting devices that enhance convenience, comfort, and efficiency. By incorporating smart lights, plugs, air purifiers, coffee makers, TVs, robotic vacuums, charging cables, docking stations, keyboards, mice, breathalyzers, headphones, and alarm clocks, you can create an optimized living space that supports both your academic and personal life. Embrace technology to make your college experience smarter and more enjoyable.

If you need help searching for smart devices that work with the ones you already have, use our smart home compatibility find engine. It can help you find, buy, and connect any smart device. It can also help you find other smart devices or systems compatible with your existing smart devices, such as Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa-enabled devices.

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