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Aqara has been a great option for people starting out with HomeKit, as their starter kits provide a low-cost way to add a number of HomeKit-compatible products all at once. Once you add a hub, you can add start adding water sensors, motions sensors, etc. Today, Aqara is unveiling a brand-new TVOC Air Quality Monitor with an e-ink design.
HomeKit Weekly is a series focused on smart home accessories, automation tips and tricks, and everything to do with Apple’s smart home framework.
Measuring air quality has somehow become a hobby of mine as I enjoy seeing how tasks like cooking, leaving windows open, or using a vacuum affect the sensors. Aqara’s new air quality monitor requires the Aqara M1S hub so if you have an older M1 model, you’ll need to upgrade. I am running the M1S hub right alongside the original hub as I didn’t want to go through the hassle of migrating over my existing accessories. It will also work with the M2 hub or the Aqara camera.Aqara TVOC Air Quality Monitor and HomeKit
Since Aqara supports HomeKit, the hub will onboard itself into your HomeKit environment during the setup process. Aqara includes the HomeKit code on the instructions as well as the underside of the hub. Setting up the Aqara TVOC Air Quality Monitor is just as easy. You’ll use the Aqara app to add the device, choose your M1S hub, and then you’ll press and hold the top button for eight seconds to put it in pairing mode. Once it’s paired to the hub, it will appear in the same room in the Home app that the hub is assigned. If you don’t plan on putting the products in the same room, you can change the location of the sensor, just as you would any other accessory.
As you can see from the photo above, the sensor is fairly small but large enough to be easily read. It will default to Celsius out of the box, but you can swap it to Fahrenheit in the Aqara app by going to the device’s settings. The Aqara TVOC Air Quality Monitor has three built-in sensors measuring the level of TVOC, temperature, and humidity. Because it supports HomeKit, you can use this data to create scenes to combat poor air quality by turning on air purifiers or giving you an alert in the Home app.
One of the benefits of investing in the Aqara ecosystem is you get to enjoy the reliability of Zigbee 3.0, but still use HomeKit. Aqara products have been some of the most reliable HomeKit products I’ve owned. If you haven’t picked up a water sensor yet, I encourage you to buy one to put under all of your sinks and in front of your refrigerator and dishwasher. I’ve been using the air quality monitor for a couple of days, and if you already have a few Aqara products, it’s a no-brainer to add to your HomeKit environment to track the quality of the air you’re breathing inside your home. As I’ve mentioned in other reviews, e-ink displays with HomeKit products are a fantastic trend as they look great while having a long-lasting battery.
Aqara is offering a 15% off coupon (TVOCPR2224) on the US Amazon store that’s valid until July 24 if you want to pick up the new e-ink Aqara TVOC Air Quality Monitor at a discount. It supports HomeKit, but it also supports Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and IFTTT.Apple Stores in Europe begin selling Aqara products
Aqara has announced that Apple Stores in Europe have began selling select products as well. The product lineup at the Apple Store includes the Aqara Hub M2, the Aqara Camera Hub G2H, the Door & Window sensor, the Temperature & Humidity sensor, and the Vibration sensor.
“Being able to offer Aqara products in Apple Stores in Europe is an essential step for us to connect with a fast-growing community of HomeKit users globally, and we are looking to further expand our product assortments in more Apple Stores in Europe and other regions in the near future,” said Cathy You, Senior Vice President of Aqara.
Aqara products are now available in Apple Stores in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macao, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK. Aqara also announced their plan to place its products in South Korean Apple Stores in the coming months.
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