Meross smart plug makes HomeKit home automation easy and cheap [Review]
The Meross Smart WiFi Plug Mini is an inexpensive and easy-to-install way to get started in home automation. This smart plug lets you control a lamp, fan or other appliance without needing to touch it. Support for Apple’s HomeKit and Amazon Alexa means voice commands, or automated schedules, are all that’s necessary.
I tested a pair of these accessories for a week, and can report on how they perform in daily use.
Meross Smart WiFi Plug Mini review
Meross’s smart plug is much smaller than most first-generation models by other companies. It measures 2.7 inches wide by 1.5 inches tall and 1.5 inches thick. Two of them fit into a standard dual-plug wall socket.
The Smart WiFi Plug Mini comes in only one color: white. That’s not an eye-catching color, helping keep this accessory discrete. Still, it looks better behind the sofa or a table than where you and your guests can see it.
On the front of the smart plug is a standard Type B wall socket as used in North America. On the back is a Type B three-prong wall plug.
On the right side is a power button, allowing you to turn this accessory on or off without using HomeKit. Also on that side is a small LED to indicate whether the Smart WiFi Plug Mini is getting power, and if it’s connecting to Wi-Fi properly.
This is a solidly-built item. There’s not the slightest sign of poor workmanship or shoddy design anywhere.
Meross Smart WiFi Plug Mini has a manual power button on the right side.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac
Performance: It just works
Before going into details about the performance of this product, if you’re already familiar with HomeKit or connecting accessories to Alexa then let me save you some time by saying that the Meross Smart WiFi Plug Mini performed perfectly with both home-automation systems.
For those new to all this, Apple’s HomeKit makes adding accessories like this one a breeze. Open the Home app that comes pre-installed on iPhones, scan the QR Code on the top of the smart plug, and Meross’s product will appear as a controllable item.
From the Home app, you can add the smart plug to “Scenes,” Apple’s term for collections of actions that happen automatically, or on a voice command. You can have the Smart WiFi Plug Mini turn on a lamp whenever you come home, for example. I go into more detail in this guide to getting started with HomeKit.
My real-world testing proves Meross built a quality product. It was easy to set up, and responds quickly to commands. I see no differences between it and more expensive options.
Amazon Alexa support is also built into this accessory. So people who have an Amazon smart speaker can control this smart plug through voice commands to Alexa. I tested this function as well, and encountered no problems, either in set up or use.
Meross Smart WiFi Plug Mini final thoughts
Meross isn’t a well-known brand, probably making some of you nervous about whether the Smart WiFi Plug Mini is cheap junk. Let me assure you that it’s not. In all my tests, it performed exactly as expected.
Given the low price, this is a outstanding option for people who want to get a start in home automation without breaking the bank.
In the U.S., Meross sells the Smart WiFi Plug Mini through Amazon. A pair of them cost just $24.99. And two smart plugs is a good beginning because you get the advantages of being able to, for example, say “Hey Siri, good morning” and have multiple lights around your home turn on.
Buy from: Amazon
Just be warned, Meross offers a version of this smart plug without HomeKit for slightly less. Make certain the device you’re buying model number MSS110HK, and that it specifically promises HomeKit support.
Rivals include Belkin’s Wemo WiFi Smart Plug (currently available for $17.99 on Amazon, though it usually sells for $34.99). A smaller version is coming soon from Belkin.
Another very good option is the Satechi Dual Smart Outlet, which doubles the number of plugs. Each is individually controllable. It’s HomeKit-only.
Meross provided Cult of Mac with a review unit for this article. See our reviews policy, and check out more in-depth reviews of Apple-related items.