How to set up a smart home with Xiaomi AI smart speaker
The Xiaomi Mi AI Bluetooth 4.1 speaker made waves in the smart home world when it was first released this summer. Similarly to Amazon Echo (and at a much lower price), the Xiaomi Mi AI is about more than just quality music: the speaker can understand voice commands and act as a hub for your Xiaomi smart home devices.
But there is a catch: the current version of the Xiaomi AI Bluetooth 4.1 speaker only works with the Chinese language. And while you are sure to figure out how to play your favorite tunes or navigate the very user-friendly Mi AI app easily, setting up a smart home may not be such smooth sailing.
Don't worry — we are here to help and make sure you have your smart home running within minutes even if you don't yet speak a word of Chinese.
How to set up a smart home using the Mi AI Speaker?
Step 1: Go to the Mi AI app and find the little Home icon at the bottom of the app's control panel. This will give you the option of controlling compatible Xiaomi smart home devices that you already have in your Mi Home App.
From here, you will be taken to the Mi Home App and asked to allow the speaker to control these connected devices. After you give the speaker the necessary permissions, all the available devices will appear in the Mi AI App and populate the list under the Home icon.
Note that not all Xiaomi smart devices are yet supported by the speaker. The list of supported devices includes Mi Lights and Xiaomi Yeelights, Xiaomi TV boxes, Xiaomi rice cookers, Xiaomi air purifiers, vacuum cleaners and smart sockets among others.
Step 2: After you see all of the available devices in the list, you will have the option of renaming them. From then on, you will be able to control any of these connected devices via simple voice commands like "Turn Rice Cooker on".
And here is where things can get a bit tricky.
Step 3: Try giving your devices very simple Chinese names. For instance, instead of "rice cooker" in Chinese, you can simply use a numeral like "10". Then, you will just need a few simple phrases to control it: "dakai shi hao" (turn on number 10) or "guan deng shi hao" (turn off number 10"). This way, you can still manage all your smart home devices without signing up for a Chinese language course.
Alternatively, you can create custom voice commands. Go to Mi AI add-ons section and choose the AI plug-in. Here, you can set up custom phrases to control your Xiaomi smart home devices. Yes, the phrases will still need to be in Chinese — but this gives you a chance to use a very simple phrase to, say, draw your curtains. For instance, you can set "ni hao" (hello) as a trigger phrase for the curtains to close instead of the literal translation.
That's not all. Another way to make your Mi life easier is to create custom scenes and automations in the Mi Home app itself — and the Mi AI Speaker will be able to control them. Here's how to set this up:
● Go to the Mi Home app and create the needed scene: for instance, "Bedtime Scene". Add all the Xiaomi devices and the rules they need to follow: lights off, curtains drawn, air purifier on, etc.
● Go to the Mi AI app and create a simple custom phrase to trigger the above scene. For instance, you can set to say "wan an" ("good night" in Chinese) to control a whole set of connected devices.
There you have it! You can now set up and control your home easily with the Xiaomi AI Smart Speaker. And, while at it, impress your friends and family with your fluent command of Chinese :-)
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