If you are looking for a HomeKit-compatible socket for your home, you will inevitably come across the Meross or Refoss model. Other well-known HomeKit alternatives would be Philips Hue (Zigbee) and Eve (Thread). However, one hub is required for each of these two.
There used to be the Koogeek, which we tested here, but these have more or less disappeared from the market and are only available as used. Meross is currently the manufacturer of choice. Or Refoss, from whom our model comes. But lo and behold: in the Home app, Meross is specified as the manufacturer. Also, the Meross app and the Refoss app, which is called eHomeLife, look completely identical and yes, you can also log in with the same account.
Meross and Refoss are the same manufacturer
So yes: it’s the same manufacturer, just under two different brands. So it doesn’t matter which brand you buy, it works in every app. Although that doesn’t really matter, since the device is integrated into HomeKit anyway. The app – and unfortunately then a registration is needed – is only really important for one thing: any firmware updates. Apart from that, you can stay right in the Apple universe.
A note for the purchase: as unimportant as the actual brand is, it is important to make sure that you buy a HomeKit-compatible copy. Since the sockets under both brands are also sold as versions that are not HomeKit-compatible, you should explicitly pay attention to this. If you buy it used, also pay attention to the small sticker on the side that contains the QR code for registering it in Apple’s smart home system. Without this you cannot register the socket with HomeKit or you have gotten the incompatible model anyway.
Fast integration into HomeKit, fast response
In addition to the control via HomeKit, there is a button on the top that you can use to switch the socket manually. This is also used to reset and reconnect the socket. That went smoothly for us. The switchable socket behaved unobtrusively, did not click too loudly when switching and reacted every time (tested over a week). You can’t expect more from such a small but important device.
The model number we tested was the MSS210, which could also be quickly added to the Meross app after adding it to HomeKit (we deleted the Refoss app straight away) using the plus button in the top right.
A good model if you start with Smart Home
For everyone who is looking for a cheap HomeKit socket because they just want to switch something, the Meross or Refoss socket is recommended. Unfortunately, a firmware update is only possible with registration, and even if you use your extra smart home email address, it’s still annoying. Otherwise we were satisfied with the device at the low price.
However, if you value higher quality, very long support cycles and more modern wireless technology, you should use the Hue socket (especially if you already have a hub) or the Smart Plugs from Eve, which are already thread-compatible (and can be connected via a HomePod mini).