DIY Smart Socket with ESP8266 and AUKEY charger (1/3)

The ESP8266 looks like a technological parasite!

I suspected that AUKEY PA-S11 charger had some empty space inside its enclosure. I hate wasting space and I had few ESP8266 laying around. Could this sound like a marriage made in heaven? Maybe! It’s time to risk an electric shock and setting my office on fire for your personal pleasure! Time for a DIY smart socket.

DIY Smart Socket

I was inspired by the Oittm smart plug which I reviewed previously here. The problem with most smart gadgets is that they don’t often provide us with API to play with. I wish more of the smart home gadgets would take the Yeelight approach. I promise, I will revisit the Oittm smart plug again and try to hack it further, but let’s focus for now on AUKEY charger and the ESP8266.

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ESP8266 are so cheap nowadays, that I’m tempted to add it to pretty much ANY commercially available products. It sounds like a great idea for a series of articles! I have six ESP-01 I bought on the cheap some time ago. These are small but also limited to 4 usable pins. It’s more than enough for me.

The socket uses ESP8266 to drive the ‘smart’ functionality. The chip is connected to my Raspberry Pi server running NodeRED. I wrote before about ESP8266 and NodeRED.  The main features of the DIY Smart Socket include:

  • all USB-A ports operational and ready for charing regardless of the socket state
  • ON/OFF start behaviour
  • Tasker integration
  • Alexa integration
  • Google Home (integration will follow)

Conclusion

For less than a $5 it’s a really cool upgrade to make. I always loved the ideas of adding interesting features to everyday objects. This is one of the very reasonable ones! Let me know via social media what other products you would like to see upgraded to ESP8266. Something tells me, this could turn interesting soon! I will upload the full tutorial soon, so follow me via social media and I will keep you posted!

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