Home Anybody using a SwitchBot? Move physical buttons with Siri!

Squuiid

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Oct 31, 2006
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I'm thinking of automating my espresso machine and door entry system with Siri Shortcuts.
I wondered if anyone had any experience using SwitchBots?
https://www.switch-bot.com

Both of the devices I wish to automate have physical buttons, and to those wondering why I don't just buy them with built in HomeKit, well there are two reasons. One, to my knowledge, no full blown espresso machine has HomeKit/IFTT functionality and they are a hefty investment. Secondly, I live in an apartment block and the door entry system cannot be replaced/modified as it is centralised and managed by the building management company.

A SwitchBot would be able to both turn on my espresso machine in the morning and allow entry into the building by using Siri, either at home or remotely.
I'd use Macstories excellent Siri Shortcuts/IFTT guide to add this functionality to Siri.
https://www.macstories.net/ios/how-to-trigger-ifttt-applets-with-ios-12s-new-shortcuts-app-and-siri/

It would be great to hear from anyone who has used a SwitchBot and what their experience has been.
Thanks.
 
Last edited:

Squuiid

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Oct 31, 2006
1,581
894
So, I bought a Hub Plus and two SwitchBots (black & white) and thought I'd post my experience with them.

Usage:
I have one SwitchBot controlling a Barista Express espresso machine and the other controlling door entry to my apartment.
The espresso machine has a 30min warm-up period and does not come with a timer so a SwitchBot is needed to power it on early in the morning ready for use.
The door entry has a physical button which must be pushed to unlock the doors in the main entrance. A SwitchBot does this perfectly, while also enabling remote access.

Pros:
The hardware is impressive. Both SwitchBot and Hub Plus are very well built, with high quality plastic used. Both white and black look great. The mechanism works well and so far seems very reliable.

IFTTT functionality works well, as does Siri voice control when used with IFTTT Webhooks. The bots can be triggered using a Siri shortcut or Siri voice control when in or out of your home.

Set-up was relatively painless, Hub and SwitchBots paired easily.

The adhesive pads on the SwitchBots seem strong and work well, allowing easy placement.

Cons:
The iPhone app still needs some improvements here and there. There are a few bugs and UI issues. However, the developers are very responsive on their forums and are actively improving the app. They seem to be using Agile software development which means the fixes come frequently and quickly.

Overall, if you need to automate devices with a button, I’d recommend you give these a shot. They work surprisingly well with Siri Shortcuts.
 

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cjbryce

macrumors 6502
Jun 4, 2008
470
144
London
Interesting. In your view does the mechanical switch have enough oomph to physically depress a spring-loaded mechanical switch which requires about 2lbs of pressure to move?
 

Squuiid

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Oct 31, 2006
1,581
894
Interesting. In your view does the mechanical switch have enough oomph to physically depress a spring-loaded mechanical switch which requires about 2lbs of pressure to move?
If I had to guess I’d say yes, but they’re on Amazon so you could always return if they don’t work out for you.
 
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