Get smart features in your home without having to buy a new set of electrical appliances. Learn here how to make and control your smart sockets with an attachment and Raspberry Pi.
Suitable for: Beginners with basic knowledge
Time required: Approx. 30 mins
Budget: Around £80
Can be extended with: ZigBee lights, ZigBee buttons, ZigBee sensors from Philips Hue, Ikea TRADFRI, Paul-Neuhaus, dresden elektronik, Jung, Busch-Jaeger, Xiaomi
You will also need: Tablet or PC for initial setup, Internet connection
Before you start – The operating system
As with all Raspberry Pi projects, we start by installing an operating system.
To make the installation as easy as possible and to avoid an unnecessarily complicated installation, dresden elektronik, the manufacturer of the RaspBee add-on module for the GPIO interface, provides a preconfigured Raspian image. You can download it here.
The micro SD card should have at least 8 GB memory. For the installation using Windows use the program “Win32DiskImager”. Detailed installation instructions can be found here.
Important basic settings
In the next step, plug the RaspBee add-on module onto the first twelve pins of the GPIO interface of the Raspberry Pi as shown in the illustrations below:
Now insert the MicroSD card into the slot, connect your Raspberry Pi to the power supply and connect the Pi to the Internet with a LAN cable and your router.
The RaspBee add-on module is now a fully-fledged ZigBee Gateway. The control interface (Phoscon App) can now be accessed via a browser with a device of your choice. The Raspberry Pi is used as a network device. You don’t need to connect a screen and keyboard directly but you will need a tablet or PC for initial commissioning.
For technically interested and experienced users: a backend software called “deCONZ” is implemented in the preconfigured image. This software visualises the ZigBee network and offers the core functions of the ZigBee controller. At the same time, this software is responsible for starting an application to control the socket: the Phoscon App. This app is also used to teach the Osram Smart+ Plug and make it ready for operation.
Opening the app and setting up the Osram Smart+ Plug
To open the Phoscon App, go to http://phoscon.de/app. You can now click on the gateway on the login page. The communication between browser and gateway takes place exclusively in the local network.
If the gateway is not displayed, a search is started automatically. Afterward, you can repeat this anytime by clicking on the P logo.
Now follow the instructions in the app. First define a gateway name and a password. In the second step, the ZigBee devices, in this case the Osram Smart+ socket, are added.
After the device is found during the search then assign it to a group. The application guides you through the process. Then the device can be given a new name. In our example we called it “Osram Smart+”.
We also created the “Corridor” group and assigned the socket to it. This is important because in the ZigBee world, device groups must always be assigned so that they can be controlled. After that the Osram Smart+ Plug is now ready for operation and can also be controlled through the app.
As a rule the ZigBee device must always be in the factory default state to join a network. If this is not the case, reset it and it will be found in the device search.
If you use “deCONZ”: The device with its ZigBee clusters can be viewed in the backend software if you are using a VNC player, or connect directly to a screen and keyboard and mouse with the Raspberry Pi.
Cover picture: Fotolia, #89527108, eevl