Aqara Officially Announce UK HomeKit Hub
After about a fortnight of speculation as to when and if Aqara were readying the release of the UK version of their popular HomeKit compatible hub, the company has now officially announced the device itself. This puts to an end a year of questions as to whether there would be a UK version of said hub, which originally came out over a year ago, although at this time the only version available was the Chinese version.
If you’re new to HomeKit in general, or Aqara in particular, Aqara is the main brand of Lumi United, a manufacturer of smart home devices, including sensors, switches, cameras and of course the Aqara hub. The hub is the device that brings all of their Zigbee-based devices together, as well as connecting to your wifi network and your HomeKit Home, via Wifi. From there it exposes (nearly) all of its own devices to HomeKit, in addition to some of the equivalent switches and sensors made by Mijia that are all installed via either the Mi Home or Aqara apps. The two-fold benefits are that you not only get to control these devices in the Mi Home app, which allows for automation and triggers to control other Xiaomi smart home ecosystem products that aren’t HomeKit compatible but possibly, more importantly, access to lots of very inexpensive, reliable and super fast sensors and switches that generally leave the equivalent wifi and Bluetooth-based device in the dust.
There’s no word on where or when it’ll actually come out in the UK, or even a price point, although there is mention of the hub being made available via amazon.co.uk soon. Our guess is to expect to pay somewhere in the region of £50-65. One word of warning, however; There are a couple of sellers on amazon.co.uk that are selling the Aqara hub, although it’s highly likely they’re selling the Chinese one with a UK adaptor, so do check with them to make sure before buying. In the US, only one store – AqaraDirect – is selling the US version (currently out of stock), with other sellers advertising the Chinese hub with an adaptor.
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So what about people who already have a Chinese version hub? Is the Chinese version going to work properly in the UK? And what about the zigbee sensors and devices will they work with UK hub version?
The sensors (motion, temperature, contact) will work with all the hubs, regardless of where you bought them. The Chinese hub will not be fully functional with the UK server, so if you have the Chinese hub, it’s better to use the Chinese Mainland server.
Thanks Simon. I guess i should have waited until the UK hub releases before buying the Chinese one. I have many problems using this hub. The main problem is when I am outside and connected to cellular or another WiFi I do not receive any notification nor able to access the hub. This makes my security system absolutely useless. It seems my hub is not connected to internet and it only works within the home network. I have tried EU server and Chinese, non worked. My hub firmware version is 1.6.2.
Any idea where the problem is?
Assuming you’re using the Aqara hub as part of a HimeKit setup, do you have a home hub (Apple TV, HomePod or recent iPad)? Without a Homehub, you won’t get remote access to any of your HomeKit devices.
I am using my hub with Aqara app and apple homekit. I do have an apple tv 3rd gen. I have gone through the instruction to make sure both my phone and apple tv are signed in with the same icloud user with keychain on and using two factor authentication.
Isn’t the Aqara app or Mi home app suppose to work and send data over the internet on their own and not use the Apple home kit?
Hi, unfortunately the Apple TV 3 can’t give you remote access, or live camera feeds, only automations, so you’re going to need an Apple TV 4th gen or Higher, a HomePod, or an iPad running iOS12 in order to get remote access. As for the apps connecting remotely themselves, yes I think so, but I’ve not actually tried it. I’ll do some tests and let you know.
Hi Simon, do you know if this works on the 2.4 ghz or dual band? I am pretty sure I read somewhere that it requires you to disable dual band on your router. Do you know if that is correct?
Any idea when theses will become available in the UK? The Aqara UK page points to a non-existent Amazon page!
I don’t really know what Aqara are playing about at, as there seems to be no info since the announcement of this hub. As regards the hub and bands, it will only work on 2.4gHz. It depends on the router you have, but assuming yours is dual band, it seems to have no problem with some routers when it comes to identifying the 2.4gHz signal even if both bands are ‘combined’, but it has trouble with some other routers in this respect from what I’ve heard from others. I’ve separated my router bands into two separate networks, so it makes it easier. You shouldn’t have to disable the 5gHz band if you do this, but I don’t think you would need to anyway.
Thanks for the advice on routers. Mines a BT Smart hub. Guess we’ll have to wait as Aqara take their own sweet time 😉
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