Switchbot Blind Tilt Review – Turn Any Blinds into Smart Blinds
Switchbot, a reputable brand in the smart home field, recently released its new product. Meet, SwitchBot Blind Tilt, a solar-powered gadget that turns any blinds into smart blinds! While there are so many smart home devices lately, not everyone is useful. In this review, let us see if SwitchBot Blind Tilt is a useful gadget for your house and if you really need it.
Makes your blinds smart
You heard it right. SwitchBot Tilt can be used to make any blinds, not just window blinds but also door blinds smart. Meaning, you can control the closing and opening of your blinds
- with your phone (via Switchbot App)
- voice (via google home or Alexa or Siri)
- with a remote (via Switchbot remote controller)
- you can also set schedules and use the light sensor on the device to automatically open/close based on sunlight irradiation
Please note that Switchbot Blind Tilt is a Bluetooth device so it cannot be connected to Wifi directly. However, you can buy Switchbot’s Hub mini to achieve fully remote WiFi-based operation to control it from anywhere in the world. This is how you’d do it,
- Buy Switchbot Hub Mini
- Pair Hub Mini with your WiFi through Switchbot phone app
- Pair Blind Tilt with the Hub Mini
- Now, the Blind Tilt can be controlled with WiFi through Hub Mini
Works with different Blinds
Switchbot Blind Tilt is designed in such a way that it could accommodate almost any window blinds, irrespective of the size of the tilt wand or the size of the blinds.
To accommodate different tilt wand sizes, the package comes with three wand size
You know what, this smart blinds tilt also works with door blinds. An example would be balcony blinds in an apartment. In fact, I tested mine on balcony blinds at my friend’s place because all of my window blinds are string/chain type.
Note: SwitchBot does not officially say this because their app is made for horizontal blinds. But, you can do some adjustments while calibrating and make it (almost perfectly) work with vertical blinds.
The motor is powerful enough to handle blinds with bigger slats (the sheets) but if you think your blinds require significant power from a human to rotate the wand, then Switchbot Blind Tilt may not be for you unless you could make the wand rotation smoother using a lubricant.
It took me about 15 minutes to install this but I should tell you that the Open Flex Coupling piece is quirky. If the wand size is not standard, you might have to use their adapter and put the Open Flex Coupling and apply a good amount of pressure to close it. I was afraid it would break. So, be careful when you do that step. Since there is no spare included in the package, it will be a mess if you break the Coupling piece.
There are 4 adapters for the wand, Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large. If none of the wand adapters work, stuff something like paper to make it fit. May not be the optimal way but hey, it will work!
I will not spend time in the installation section. When you are setting up the device, the app gives you both pictorial and video guides which is well enough. Here is the installation video if you may like to watch.
Quiet, but not enough
This gadget features motors to control the rotation of the tilt wands and with the motor, comes noise. Although Switchbot has done its best to minimize the operation noise, it is not very quiet. Switchbot Tilt has 2 modes of operation,
- The performance mode – faster motor rotations, faster closing and opening of blinds and thus, more sound involved. The sound is quite a lot and I would definitely avoid this mode. If you are sensitive to sound, it can easily disturb your sleep.
- The silent mode – slower rotations, slower openings and closings and a bit quieter motor sound. This is my go-to but this is not ultra quiet or anything, it still makes a sound loud enough to notice and distract you.
The app is the main component of this gadget. The device connects to your phone via Bluetooth and the app helps you control, customize and troubleshoot the product.
If you use Switchbot Hub Mini, the device is not directly connected to your phone. Instead, it is connected to WiFi through the Hub Mini. But you can still control, customize and troubleshoot it via the app from anywhere around the world.
Solar powered – so you never need to recharge it
A small solar panel is included in the package. You may or may not decide to use it. If you do, attach the solar panel to the window glass, making sure the sunlight directly falls on it. Connect the solar panel cable to the type c port of the tilt. You are done and you never need to manually charge your tilt again.
Remember, like any other battery, Blind Tilt’s battery has a limited life cycle. Once it is reached, it no longer charges and the batteries are non-replaceable. Hopefully, it will last for several years if not a decade before going bad.
If you decide not to use the panel, you can manually recharge the tilt with a USB-C cable. Its 2000 mAh battery should last for months.
- Switchbot Blind Tilt is advertised as a smart controller for blinds and it does the job very well
- The build quality is good and it is very easy to install. Took me about 15 minutes.
- Blades are adjustable to various angles (precisely to the closest 2 degrees)
- Can be controlled with a Phone but with a $30 addon, it can be made to work with voice assistants, wifi apps and IoT devices
- A great option if you have a wand-type horizontal window blind kit. Also works with vertical blinds but not as smoothly.
- But, if you have an option, getting a smart blinds kit is a wiser and better option than getting an add-on device like Switchbot Tilt
- Has a quiet mode option under settings but still makes noise loud enough to distract you
- Comes with a solar panel so you never need to recharge it unless your window doesn’t receive any light at all
- Turns any blinds into smart blinds
- Compatible with Alexa, Google Home and Siri
- Auto Open/Close based on a Schedule
- Smartphone App
- Wirefree Operation
- Solar Panel Included