Review: Meross’s Smart Oil Diffuser Adds a Scent to Your Home With HomeKit Support
Meross’s smart essential oil diffuser seeks to allow you to add a pleasant aroma to the air using any essential oil of your choice and increase a room’s humidity to counteract dry air, with HomeKit support for control and automations.
Meross offers a wide range of HomeKit-compatible smart home devices, including garage door openers, lighting, power strips, air purifiers, and more. Compared to its direct competitors, Meross’s smart home products are among the most affordable HomeKit-compatible devices on the market and set themselves apart with no need for a hub or third-party app.
Meross’s smart home devices differ from many other brands in the same space, such as Philips Hue smart lighting, because they do not require a hub or third-party app. In theory, you need only open the Home app on your iPhone, tap Add Accessory, and scan the code on the device to add the device, allowing you to control and automate it from the Home app thereafter. Accumulatively, this significantly eases the setup process compared to the clunky hubs and apps that many other smart home brands demand.
While this is the ideal scenario for most smart home accessories, I sometimes have problems setting up Meross’s devices on my network, where they repeatedly fail to connect with the Home app. Some users may need to temporarily disable their router’s firewall and the 5GHz portion of their network during pairing to get around these potential problems. This may not be necessary in your case, and Meross’s setup experience is generally good, but prospective customers should be prepared to troubleshoot their network in the event of any issues. It is also worth noting that Apple does not directly support essential oil diffusers in the Home app, so the device is simply set up as a humidifier.
To add essential oil to the diffuser, lift off the top section, which reveals a large, 400ml liquid reservoir. Meross recommends using the included measuring cup to add the correct amount of water along with one or two drops of essential oil, before putting the lid back in place. All of this is explained further in an instruction booklet that came with the diffuser.
Once the oil diffuser is set up, it has good responsiveness and provides a reliable connection to the Home app, being quick to respond to commands and working well with automations. Like Meross’s other devices, the diffuser works over 2.4GHz Wi-Fi only. With no hub, Meross’s HomeKit accessories can be slow or refuse to reconnect to the network when Wi-Fi is temporarily unavailable, but this is a random occurrence and cycling power seems to fix the problem.
The smart oil diffuser features a faux wood finish. I am not a fan of the look and would have preferred a more neutral and premium-looking option that could better fit in a variety of spaces, but I’m sure that it could look okay in some interiors. The diffuser is also possibly a little bit too large for my taste, and its design might make it more obtrusive than it needs to be, but Meross now offer a more compact version of the oil diffuser in a range of finishes to address these concerns.
There are buttons to control the diffuser and the LED ring, which runs around the circumference of the diffuser and adds a gentle accent light. By default, it cycles through colors. For a more subdued look, you can easily set a particular color or brightness to meet your preferences – but it is important to note that this is not a lighting product. Powered by just a few LEDs in the base, the lighting is subtle and needs to be in a dimly lit room to be clearly visible.
Even then, colors are not always accurately reproduced from the Home app on the diffuser, so it can take a while to find your preferred hue. This is fairly normal for low-cost LED smart lighting, particularly for shades such as green and purple. I also find the lighting to be fairly slow to respond once a change as been initiated in the Home app, but these minor issues did not bother me since the lights are only an accent and clearly not the accessory’s main purpose.
When activated, the diffuser quickly blows water vapor out of the top. It is quiet when running and only emits a soft trickling noise. Water in the reservoir should last for a considerable amount of time, with seven and a half hours of heavy spray or ten hours of light spray. Choosing between these modes also allows you to select how strong you want the scent to be in a room.
The diffuser is surprisingly dynamic when it comes to HomeKit, offering multiple controls for both the spray and the LED light. There is plenty of potential for automation, such as setting the target humidity of another sensor accessory and automating the diffuser to come on to reach that threshold, or having the diffuser activate for a brief period when arriving home. Apple would need to add proper diffuser support for more granular controls.
That being said, I feel that the diffuser has some problems. The top does not lock onto the base, which poses a high risk of spillage if you happen to knock the diffuser. Water is blown up inside the lid, so taking it off during operation is likely to result in splashes.
Meross recommends cleaning out the reservoir every few days. Since the water tray does not lift out, you need to disconnect the power cable to clean the accessory. If the diffuser still has any water left in it, this can be difficult and feels needlessly dangerous. The power cable is recessed and pushed in deeply on the underside of the device. This means you have to lift up the water-filled container sufficiently to gently pull out the power cable, which itself is stiff, requiring force that risks further spillage, and frequently causes sparks.
Users may be better off keeping the diffuser on until the water reservoir is empty if possible, but even then care will need to be taken to not get the power connector wet, and I strongly encourage anyone buying this device to disconnect the power adapter from the wall before trying to remove the power cable.
Since the water tray is fixed to the base that contains all of the electronic components, cleaning is also somewhat inconvenient and I was cautious to not get water in the power socket or in the vents. A connection for the power cable on the back of the device would have made this entire process feel much less perilous, but a removable water reservoir that you could lift out of the device would clearly be a much better solution.
The Bottom Line
Meross’s smart essential oil diffuser is a good addition to any smart home setup, enabling a surprisingly wide range of automations. The accessory works well, bringing a straightforward way to emit a scent via the Home app, and the accent lighting is a nice bonus touch to work into scenes.
I would have preferred a more minimal design, but the company now offers a more compact version of the diffuser with multiple finish option that some users may prefer. The biggest problem for me is cleaning the diffuser and disconnecting it from power, which seems borderline dangerous, especially when the reservoir has any liquid left in it, but other than that my experience with the device has been good.
How to Buy
In the U.S., Meross’s range of devices are available the company’s official website:
readers can get seven percent off all Meross devices from the official online store with the code MacRumors at checkout. The Smart Wi-Fi Essential Oil Diffuser is also available for a total of $22 off on Amazon thanks to a $10 reduction and a $12 on-page coupon on.