I know I’m late to the game really when it comes to smart home automation and that’s mainly because I haven’t really seen the need to automate anything in my home. However, because of Black Friday deals, I ended up purchasing a Google Home Mini and a Belkin WeMo Mini WiFi Smart Plug. I figured I’d start off slowly before jumping head first into the deep end. With the WeMo WiFi Smart Plug, I just plug it into an outlet, no need to rewire any switches for now.
The WeMo WiFi Smart Plug for the most part requires nothing more then you plugging it into an outlet. Most of the configuration requires that you install the WeMo app on your smartphone (iOS/Android). Here’s where things went a little wonky for me.
On your device, you have to connect to the network that the WeMo WiFi Smartplug is broadcasting. From there, you setup the name of the plug as well as which local network to connect to. The problem here for me is at this phase of the setup, my phone would just freeze and become unresponsive. I’m using an LG V30 and it did this about 4 times. That’s 4 times I had to hard reset my phone. At this point, I’m sure most people would have given up, but not me. Fifth time was the charm. I’m not sure why it was freezing up, but I’m glad it did finally install.
If you’re using Google Home or Google Assistant, you’ll want to link the WeMo to your account so you can use your voice to control it.
The WeMo app once it’s setup is super easy to use. I can see my Smart Plug on the list and can turn on and off my lights with a tap of a button. For more advanced settings, I can now also schedule times where my lights can turn on and off automatically. This is also really useful for when you’re out of town.
You can schedule multiple rules for each WeMo device you have connected, but since I only have one for now, I’m only setting a schedule for that.
Next, I set up the WeMo WiFi Mini Smart Plug to work with my Google Assistant, which means I can say “turn on or off my WeMo smart plug” and it’ll do it. It also works over the Internet and not just over my local network.
The WeMo WiFi Mini Smart Plug works very well once it’s installed and setup. It works well with the WeMo app for turning it on and off as well as scheduling. For the most part, setup should have been easy if not for my issues with my phone freezing. Hopefully, this was just a fluke with my device.
It also is very easy to setup the WeMo WiFi Mini Smart Plug with Google Assistant and Google Home Mini and can even work with shortcuts. It’s pretty neat and I can see why creating a smart home is so appealing. It allows for me to control my home with a push of a button on my phone or with my voice.
If you’re a smart home newbie like I am, the WeMo WiFi Mini Smart Plug is a great start. You’ll be able to easily control lights and other equipment you want to control remotely.
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