Smart devices are on good uptrend in India, thanks to increasing internet penetration & fairing reliable connectivity. With introduction of alexa devices, google home devices, the littering spark to smart home appliances, automation and smart home control is adequately matched. Beside smart speakers, several smart home products including smart lights, smart fans, Smart Switches, Smart Plugs, smart Air conditioners, Smart Refrigerators, Smart health products, Smart invertors, etc are available in India and the categories as well as the number of choices in each category are on positive rise. Though, the area of smart home control and automation is still in its early stage and relatively expensive compared to western countries; the interest and inclination is rapidly growing, especially among technically educated, geeky motivated.
In this article contained within our series of articles on smart home in India, let’s discuss options available for smart ceiling fans. Since there are not many choices, I have also listed ways to make your ceiling fans smart.
Top Smart Ceiling fans in India
1. Orient Electric Aeroslim Fans
Let me throw the hat to this company. They recently launched this fan at price of around Rs. 7000 in Indian market (you can buy it from here) and as far as I know they are one of the first to jump the gun with a complete smart fan in India. Definitely, other manufacturers will follow soon. Though, this smart fan doesn’t come cheap, it has plethora of features, these are:
- Pairs with Wifi network supporting local and internet control
- Comes with smartphone app for easy pairing and mobile control.
- Can be controlled via voice as it supports amazon alexa and google assistant pairing.
- Comes with inbuilt led downlight (also called underlight) for added illumination. Led light can also be remotely controlled (on/off, dimming support)
- Also supports reverse rotation mode. Several other modes like breeze and turbo, etc are available.
- Beautiful aesthetic
As of writing this article, I can safely say that there isn’t any fierce competition to Orient Electric Aeroslim smart fans. Unless there is that, it is gonna stay expensive.
2. Gorilla Fans by Atomberg Technologies
– The fan which comes close to Orient Aeroslim smart fan is the Gorilla Fan by Atomberg Technology starting at price of around Rs.3000. (You can buy it from here)I’ve been using this fan for quite some time. Though this fan isn’t fully smart like Orient one as it doesn’t have mobile app or wifi/IOT (internet of things) support (It just comes with IR remote), I have listed it here in this article because one can easily make smart any infrared remote controlled fan by using a IR to IOT/WiFi based Smart controller about which we are gonna discuss in the section below. Hence by using such device, one can make any fan with remote support, do what really smart IOT fans do. Here are its features:
- Highly energy efficient, At maximum speed, consumes just 28-35 watt of electricity which is half of what regular fans consume.
- High Air delivery, In my experience, the fan speed is higher or equal to high speed regular fans
- Brushless dc motor technology, thanks to which the fan is different.
- 3 years warranty
- Comes with infrared remote control.
- Base model is half the price of Orient Aeroslim smart fan.
- Can be easily used with Smart Wifi IR hub controllers for mobile control, alexa, google assistant voice control.
3. Any Ceiling Fan with remote and using WiFi IR remote controller
– Using the jugaad mentioned in the last section (i.e. Wifi IR remote control hub), you can convert any Infrared remote controlled fan into smart fan. There are several ceiling fan models that come with remote, and are available from brands as Orient like Orient Electric Wendy or Orient Electric Spectra, Kenstar, Usha, Luminous like Luminous Lumaire led ceiling fan, Havells like Havells Octet Underlight etc. You can browse through several such models here.
4. Convert your existing normal fan by adding remote fan controllers/regulators coupled with Wifi IR controller hub
– What if your existing fan is neither IOT smart nor ir remote controlled. If your only motive is to add smart capability to your existing regular fans, you are not luckily helpless. You can add IR remote capability to any normal fan by buying IR remote fan speed dimmers/controllers replacing your existing fan speed regulator knob. Once you installed that, you can further add further smart capability by using Wifi IR controller. Such ir-based fan dimmers can be bought as cheap as Rs. 500. There are also remote control switches available which support several lights and a fan in a single unit.
- Rectus Enterprises FL-101 Wireless Digital Fan (1 to 9 speeds) Regulator and Light Controller priced at around Rs.550, can be bought from here
- Usha Aeroswitch Fan Remote Control
- Recosys Polycarbonate Innovative Remote Control Switch for Light and Fan
- Several other such remote fan speed regulators from various brands are available online, just search for remote fan control
Wifi IR Remote Control Smart Hub/Controllers –
Throughout this article, my strong emphasis has been on this section and you’ll see that it is worthy. There are several Smart infrared controllers available in India. These devices contains several IR transmitters which send IR signals in all directions to control desired appliances in a room and can be remotely controlled from smartphone via internet. These devices can convert any IR remote controlled devices into smart devices for easy home control or automation. All a user needs to do is to feed IR signals from their existing remotes to such a hub so the bridge/hub could learn or record those signals and reproduce or transmit them when required to control the linked appliances.
I have used Broadlink RM Mini 3 and it works quite well and is reasonably priced at around Rs.1400 and can be purchased from here . It comes with an app to control and add remotes. Use the app to record each button of your existing remote (it can learn and record all your remotes, so you can get stop looking for remotes each time you want to control your appliances) and then control your appliance via the app or if you have smart speaker like Google Home or Amazon Alexa, use your voice to control the appliances. Though its integration with alexa or google assistant is not yet satisfactory in terms of features, you can make-do by creating scenes in its app (Broadlink IHC – Intelligent Home Center) for desired remote buttons press (also there is ability to group several buttons together to perform a task) which would be easily discovered in alexa devices as well as google assistant. Other such WiFi IR Hub available for sale in India are Orvibo Magic Cube IR Blaster Universal Remote, etc.
Adding just one such hub in a room can make several ir remote controlled devices smart so using such a device makes more sense to me as it is more cost effective and versatile, though needs a little bit of tinkering. Another advantage of using this is that you’ve now got several choices of fans as there are several models from various brands available that come with ir remotes.
If you’ve any suggestion to add, feel free to add in comments. If you need any assistance in your smart home journey, do not hesitate to ask.