There was a broken light switch in the upstairs hall. Since I knew I was going to go through the trouble of replacing the switch, I decided to get another fancy smart switch. This time I went with the TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch.
The TP-Link switch is a lot like the WeMo switch (see part 2). In fact, it was an accident that I got that switch–I intended to get another WeMo, but wasn’t paying attention and bought the TP-Link instead. It took awhile for me to notice that things were different.
The wiring of the switch was simple and pretty much identical to what I did for the WeMo. I did notice that the switch packaging was different, and the switch was slightly different, but the differences are so minor that I initially assumed I had a slightly different model of the same thing.
It wasn’t until I started trying to connect the TP-Link switch to the Echo that I ran into problems. Most of the problems stemmed from the fact that I was going through the same steps I did for the WeMo. Once I realized that the switch was different, it wasn’t immediately obvious where to find instructions (there was nothing helpful in the box). After searching online, I discovered that the setup is a bit more complicated and required installing the TP-Link Kasa app, creating a Kasa account, installing a special Alexa skill, and linking the accounts.
Now that everything is set up and working, there’s no different from the WeMo in terms of functionality. The switch works like a switch and the lights can also be voice activated via Alexa. The thing that I like least about the switch was that the setup was comparably more complicated, but some of that was due to incorrect assumptions on my part.