The United Kingdom-based smart plug manufacturer, WIFIPLUG, joined the HomeKit world about a year ago with an appropriately named, Wi-Fi Smart Plug that is available in the European market. The plug’s release was somewhat under the radar for us in North America due to the sheer amount of plugs that are available but was notable as it provides energy monitoring to a less crowded marketplace overseas and at an affordable price. The company looks to be expanding their smart plug efforts with a new product that we have uncovered called Laundry Life that is tailored to, you guessed it, laundry machines.
While details are still scarce, with no mentions of the product being found on the WIFIPLUG website or through its partners, we have been able to dig up a few details about the device. First, it appears the Laundry Life plug is essentially a re-skinned or re-branded version of the company’s existing smart plug. The difference is that the company has built a dedicated App for the updated device, which references several partnerships with appliance manufacturers Electrolux, AEG, and Zanussi. The App is actually available now on the iOS App Store, and it looks like the first build was submitted around 8 months ago but has remained dormant as it has not yet been officially launched.
Naturally, we installed the App curious for more details, but we were met with requirements for a specific model and serial numbers during the registration process to prevent us from seeing the App in action. What we were able to see through the App Store description is that the App will use the company’s energy monitoring expertise to determine when a connected washing machine has completed its cycle and will notify owners via a push notification. Further insights that are gathered through energy monitoring include a detailed log of past washes, duration, and of course breakdowns of energy usage per wash and averages over the life of the unit. Other tabs within the App are related to general usage and tips for washing machines and an accessory store, where parts can be purchased.
The one potentially big feature that we found during the aforementioned registration process, is that Laundry Life will be able to determine when a problem with the washer itself has occurred and will attempt to notify a servicing agent proactively. This requires a user to put in their phone number when signing up, which will allow a service company to contact you when needed. This is certainly a handy feature to have, but it does toe the line when it comes to privacy, and there are some lengthy privacy policies involved between not just WIFIPLUG, but also their partners.
Of course, everything that we have found out so far will take place within the Laundry Life App, but we were able to confirm that it will indeed support HomeKit. This confirmation comes from a recently uploaded YouTube video that shows off the pairing process, which follows the standard HomeKit code scanning process. Once paired, Laundry Life will appear just like any other HomeKit smart plug, with simple on and off controls found within the Home App, in addition to Siri voice control. Since HomeKit support is involved, this means that the plug will be available for automation and Shortcuts, which we can already see in scenarios that flash all the lights in the home once the washing machine is done.
As previously mentioned, Laundry Life has yet to be formally unveiled, and as such, details like release date and pricing are not available. We will provide updates once the product is officially unveiled, and we are excited to see expanded functionality from an ordinary smart plug. What do you think of the Laundry Life Plug? Is this something that you could see yourself picking up? Let us know in the comments below, or on Twitter, @HomeKit_Hero.
June 28, 2019Laundry Life, Smart Plug, WIFIPLUG
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