If I want to start playing w the Aqara stuff should I buy their hub first?

And any other words of wisdom before I get involved? Thanks!

As far as I can tell, none of the Aqara devices can be operated without a hub, so yes you do need a hub. I started about a month ago on Aqara and am quite happy with the performance.

I read that the latest hub - the M2, will be compatible with Matter in future, so I purchased it. Last week though I saw information about a new hub being announced - not sure when it will be released though.

Another tip - from what I can gather the Aqara devices are region specific and I’ve seen complaints about people purchasing ‘Chinese versions’ on aliexpress and then having trouble integrating it into their US-based systems for example.

I also use the hub’s IR function to switch on/off an old Stereo system, which is quite nice.

Hope this helps.

1 Like

Oh this is all helpful, thanks!

Yes, what Jaco said. I also want to add that I’ve been using Aqara hub and accessories for a while now, and they’re stable and very responsive. One of the things I love best about it is that you can automate alerts, which isn’t always possible for HomeKit automation. For instance, our front door is downstairs from our main living area, and sometimes we leave it open during the day with the outer glass door closed just to let in light and let the dogs watch the world go by. But we sometimes also forget to close it at night. Since I have an Aqara door/window sensor on it, I was able to automate an alert if we haven’t closed the front door by 11 pm. It works great. I’m using it for some other time-sensitive critical alerts too. Highly recommend.

Aqura is a great starting point, particularly when the hub gets Matter support. They have a wide range of inexpensive devices which will cover a lot of automation needs.

The one word of wisdom is to think ahead about how far down the automation rabbit hole you’re likely to go, and do a bit of advanced planning. You may find that you’re outgrowing any single-vendor automation ecosystem, either sensors or actuators they don’t make, or 3rd party ecosystems they don’t integrate well with. (HomeKit, certain garage door openers, heating systems, etc.) We all hope that Matter will help solve the ecosystem limits, but we’ve heard this story before.

Since you’re posting in the Automators Forum, you may also be thinking of more complex automation routines than the vendor’s automation scheme supports. (This is another area where the 3rd party integrations are important - they can supplement your native automations.)

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t start with a single vendor ecosystem - simple and well-integrated is good for gaining experience. But, start with some ideas of what you want to do with automation, do a bit or roadmapping to see you need needed to achieve that. This will show whether each vendor and ecosystem you choose helps move you forward, and, when you inevitably bump up against some limitations, what you can add that will play well with whet you’ve got.

Good luck, and please let us know how it’s turning out!


Great thread, thanks, everyone! I think I’m going to wait for the V3 of the hub then jump in. :slight_smile:

1 Like