Ok, so recently, Xiaomi decided to sell their Mi Air Purifier through our local supermarket chain, NTUC. NTUC sells these for S$279 which is $20 cheaper than Xiaomi's RRP of S$299. I decided to get it as it covers quite a good volume and is networked enabled. So here is a review of the Mi Air Purifier.
The Mi Air Purifier is sold in a plain cardboard box, much like their smartphones. There were no handles or cut-out holes to grab, which is a shame because it was quite heavy and the sides hard to grab. I balanced them on my shoulder for the most part.
Upon opening the box, you are presented with a pictogram showing the location of the various contents. Flipping up the internal cover, you are presented with the instruction manual in a embossed section of the Styrofoam. The manual says, "Always believe that something wonderful is about to happen", which would normally put a smile on anyone's face. I was not exactly in the mood for this as I had just had an unpleasant encounter with a dear friend of mine. But nevertheless, let's press on.
Removing the top Styrofoam, we see the Mi Air Purifier itself, covered with a synthetic cloth cover. This cloth cover fits the air purifier snugly and covers it from top to bottom. I am using as a dust cover when I am not using the air purifier over a period of time. So do not discard it yet.
Here is the Mi Air Purifier from different sides. The air intake is from the bottom front and two sides. The back portion is the panel opening to access the air filter. The back also contains a WIFI reset button and the air quality detection unit (from what I read, it is from Sharp).
Opening the back panel, we see that the power cord is stored there for transportation. Remove the power cord and we can access the sealed air filter. The air filter is locked into position via a lever at the bottom.
I installed the Mi Air Purifier where my old Honeywell Air Purifier was located. This was an air-conditioned room with closed windows and doors. The footprint is smaller but this is a taller air purifier. The unit lights up in green when the air quality is good.
The unit can sync over WIFI to a smartphone running the Mi Home app. Here I have it installed on a Xiaomi smartphone. The phone passes the WIFI setting to the Mi Air Purifier and then when the air purifier is connected via the internet, the smartphone syncs to it. The Mi Air Purifier reported PM2.5 count to be 14 (I assume the unit of measure to be the common μg/m³). I had a particle counter which measured air around the output of the Mi Air Purifier. It indicated the PM2.5 to be 8μg/m³.
This was lesser than the measurement I made in the living room with open windows. That reading for PM2.5 was 38μg/m³. About 3 times higher. I guess this shows that the air purifier was indeed cleaning up the air in the enclosed room.
After running the unit for about 20 minutes, the PM2.5 reading for the room reading with the air purifier dropped to 5μg/m³.
I initially tried using Mi Home on iOS on my iPhone 6 Plus with no luck. However, with the Xiaomi connected, I just logged onto the same account on my iPhone the next day and the Mi Air Purifier showed up. In practice, I notice that the app would sometimes loose synchronisation with the Mi Air Purifier (true for both the Android and the iOS app). This was probably the only thing I found annoying about the air purifier.
Compared to the Honeywell Air Purifier it was replacing (due to the difficulty in getting replacement filters over here), the Mi Air Purifier takes up less footprint but is taller. In terms of design, I prefer the Mi Air Purifier, as it looks clean and simple.
I really like the design of the Mi Air Purifier. The form is clean and simple. It is a straightforward and basic air purifier without ion generators. It is relatively cheap at S$279 and is able to cover quite a volume. The replacement filter is also cheap at RRP S$39.90. The app (when synced) is a good add-on feature to have an idea of the air quality.