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Xiaomi Smart Home

All the things you can add to your Smart home!

by Dalibor Lanik

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XIAOMI AND YOUR SMART HOME?
Is this the most comprehensive guide to Xiaomi Smart Home? :)


Let's see what exactly you can add to your (Smart) home....

The 1st thing that you need, although you might take this thing for granted, is a decent router! If you never thought about this, you might have a feeling that it is enough to have any router and that you can connect as many devices as you want and that it will all work. Wrong! Let's use the car analogy. It is true that you can have a sedan or a limousine and you can do whatever you want with it. But would you use it to transport bricks? Or other building material? Of course not. A pickup is much more suited to that job. It is the same with routers. If you buy a cheap router for all and everything, you can't be surprised it doesn't work OK and that devices disconnect. I would suggest a separate router for your smart home. You don't want any delays when you turn on your lights, do you? So, this one is just about right for Smart Home... not the cheapest one, but not too expensive either....



So after you get your "infrastructure" OK, it is time to get Zigbee Gateway or Hub. Coming form Xiaomi, you don't have much options:



So now that you have a decent router and a gateway, what next? The easiest thing is to add some bulbs... after all, they use your existing "infrastructure" so just replace your existing bulbs with the smart ones... There are COLOR...


...and WHITE bulbs:



after that, you might add a couple of light strips, just for atmosphere in your flat/house:


These are not a part of Xiaomi smart home suite, but really useful nonetheless, to be used in closet or as night light:


OK, now that you have the basics, you might want to add some real lighting... Ceiling lights! They're really nice and much brighter than single LED bulbs! You can use single bulbs for small spaces or additional atmosphere lighting, but in order to have enough light in bigger rooms, you need something like this:


..or like this... The 650 even has ambient lighting around the edges:


Now, there are second generation bulbs, which are pretty much the same, but are 20% brighter and white bulb has temperature control:


...and 2nd gen RGB bulb:


OK, now you have the lights. But what is so smart about those? Except the fact that you can control them from your Smartphone. Well... Remember the Gateway we presented in 2nd video? It supports all sorts of sensors and devices. Why the gateway? The bulbs and light don't need one, after all??? Well, the bulbs work on AC. That means they're constantly plugged in. If you want to use for example, motion sensor, you would have to run a cable to the AC plug, which is pretty impractical. Imagine having 5 sensors, or 10, and having to plug each one into the AC outlet, and run the cable to it! That is why all these sensors run on batteries. You just stick them onto a wall, and that's it. Once every couple of years you change battery and that's it. That is why all these devices use Zigbee protocol instead of Wi-fi. Zigbee was invented so that it uses very little power, contrary to the WiFi, so these devices can run for years on single battery. So let's see what is offered....

1st and probably most common device is motion sensor, or as Xiaomi calls it "Human detection sensor". With it you can automatically turn on the lights when you enter a room....


Next thing you will almost certainly want is a door sensor. It signals when the door or windows is open, and you can create various automation rules based on it...


Next thing you can add is Temperature/Humidity/Pressure Sensor. It is interesting being able to compare differences in room temperatures, especially in the summer :)


and you can even put it outside so you can be 100% sure what is outer temperature. Just make sure it is hidden from rain/snow. I have it on my balcony:


OK, back to security; for your windows, you can use door/windows sensor, but you can also use vibration/shock sensor. These can't tell when the windows is open or closed, but they detect vibration and movement and the angle. So If somebody tries to break in by breaking the window, you'll get the notification!


But what about internal problems? Like fire or flood? Luckily, there are several sensors just for that! First what you can add is water flood sensor. You just put it somewhere near the water source (i.e. next to your washing mashine or dish washer, etc) and it will alert you if there has been a flood!


Then there is smoke detector. Be sure to set it to lowest sensitivity if you put it near the kitchen... It turns on everytime I make hamburgers....


And finally, if you use natural gas for cooking (or heating), you can add Natural Gas leak detector unit!


Now, what about the regular devices that are not smart? I.e. you have a favorite lamp and you don't want to replace it, but it is not smart. Or a toaster. Or anything that works on AC. Luckily, there are several devices that can help you out with that. One of those is Smart Socket Basic:


The basic version can only turn on or off, but what if you need USB ports? Or want to know how much power the device consumes? For that, there is Smart Socket Enhanced.


But what about classic lights, you have a lot of those and maybe you don't want to change them? Is there a way to incorporate them in your Smart Home? Of course there is! By installing a Smart Switch! There are 2 variants. Single rocker and double rocker. Let's see....

This is single rocker switch:


...and double rocker switch:



...and here are installation videos. Note that in order to install them, you need square boxes, they won't fit into the round European boxes:




And before we continue with more "exotic" stuff, here are some options for switches that don't have to be wired. You can control your bulbs or ceiling lights with wireless switches. Pretty handy if you want to add additional switches in a room, without wiring! Ofcourse, there are single rocker and double rocker switches.


And round buttons, which support more actions, like double click and long press:


And also a special button with dimmer, that works only with ceiling lights:


Now, here is the most exotic way to control your lights or devices: magic cube!


OK, now let's get to the more exotic stuff... and let's start from the entrance. First of all, you can change your classic spyhole with the digital one. Really cool stuff!


What about the lock? Well, ofcourse! Here is digital door knob, so you won't need keys anymore! You'll be unlocking your door with fingerprint, NFC card, your phone or by numeric code....


So... what else is there? Let's think of your bathroom... Hmm, what smart things could go in there? Well, for one, there is Smart Bath Heater from Yeelight! And it is not only heater! It can also Change Air or Dry...


and here is the installation video:


And for the end, a couple of items for your bathroom; Inductive soap dispenser:


and inductive faucet, so you can wash your hands without touching anything :)


OK, a couple more details.... Some hooks and other small things for your bathroom....




...and in case you live in Europe, a great adapter for your chinese devices! Low profile, you won't even notice it's there:




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