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What Can I Do With a Sonoff S20 or S26 (and differences) Wi-Fi Smart Plug?

author Luis Silva (November 2019)

*As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small fee from qualifying purchases. It doesn't affect any item's price or eventual reviews.


Traditional time-based mechanic or digital plugs were so feature-limited that it got me wondering: Is a smart plug that expensive? Well, not really.

So I ordered a Sonoff S26 the other day, and I was happy with it but then asked myself: What exactly can I automate with it? So I did a little research.

If you're here for the Sonoff S20 vs S26 difference, scroll down to the FAQ section or click here.

Sonoff S26 allows you to remotely turn on or off your connected devices from anywhere at any time and instantly convert any standard plug into a smart outlet.

Before moving further, we need to know what it is and understand it with a few use cases.

What is a Sonoff S20/S26 wi-fi smart plug?

It's a plug from ITEAD Studio that you can use to connect to any home appliances and electric devices via wi-fi or by pressing the manual control switch in the wi-fi plug. You can remotely control your appliances or set them to turn themselves on if certain conditions occur.

For that, you can download an app for your Android or iPhone called eWeLink that also allows you to:

Set scheduled/countdown/loop timers to turn on/off at a specified time.

That's the reason I love this smart device. I use it mainly to turn on or off a dehumidifier during the night. My current dehumidifier doesn't turn completely off when it "thinks" the air reaches a certain level of humidity, so I use this plug to force it to turn off the fan and not only the compressor.

Now I can choose how much time it stays on and keep my house from also having a low humidity level.

I also like to connect this device to an oil-filled radiator heater and choose exactly how much time it stays on or off during those cold winter nights.

You can also use a scheduled timer if you want to auto-run the coffee maker every morning so when you wake up, your coffee is ready.

If you have a fish tank, you can set a loop timer to run the oxygen pump for 10 minutes every one hour.

Be aware that you can only add up to 8 enabled single/repeat/countdown timing schedules for each device and you have to start these timers manually.

Control your smart home together with your family.

On your way home, you can check if someone already turned on the water heater, the AC unit or any other appliance and if not, you can turn it on yourself right away with just one tap.

How to make it possible? Firstly open the app, tap the device name and click on the sharing icon, input the eWeLink account (phone number or email address) you want to share, tick the timer permissions (edit/delete/change/enable) you want to give, then click Next.

The other account will receive an invitation message. Click Accept, the device has shared successfully. The other user will have access to control the device.

Turn on/off a group of devices with just one tap.

You can set a scene to turn on or off a group of devices in the same account, so you don't have to do it yourself one by one. You can also set a scene to trigger other devices on or off when the status of a device changes.

Let's say you have other Sonoff devices. You can create a new scene and specify a name. For example: Leaving Home. Then, you can choose the option called Click to execute and then, Trigger device.

Then you can specify the device and the stages (on or off), you can create another scene called Coming home and set it to do exactly the inverse of the Leaving home scene.

Triggered on or off by temperature, humidity or other environmental conditions from other device sensors.

If you also buy a Sonoff TH10/TH16 Temperature and Humidity Monitoring Wi-Fi Smart Switch you can use the temperature or humidity values to work as smart scene trigger conditions to trigger on/off other Sonoff devices, like the S26.

If you also buy a Sonoff TH10/TH16 Temperature and Humidity Monitoring Wi-Fi Smart Switch you can use the temperature or humidity values to work as smart scene trigger conditions to trigger on/off other Sonoff devices, like the S26.

Another use case is to turn on an S26 when you touch a Sonoff T1 wireless panel switch. For that, you'll have to add two new scenes: one for turning on the S26 when you turn the T1 on and another for turning the S26 off when you turn the T1 off.

It works perfectly with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT and Google Nest.

I'm not a fan of "always on" mics, so, for now, I'm sticking with IFTTT only. It has some great and some crazy triggers that you should try for yourself.

For example, you can make your Sonoff turn a light on when you receive a new email and when the current weather condition changes to rain, at sunset, when your kids or your wife are almost or already home when you get tagged on a Facebook photo, among hundreds of other triggers.

I also use IFTTT to create two widgets that I have on my home screen: One to turn the S26 on and another to turn it off.

Then it only takes a couple of seconds to turn it on or off. You don't need to open the app or even leave it open all the time.

You can also ask Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa to turn on or off your S26 or any other eWeLink devices, dim or brighten a light, change light color and much more. Just start with Alexa or Hey Google and your Assistant is ready to help.

Other FAQs you may have about this plug:

-Is it reliable?

My S26 works like it's supposed to. I didn't have any issues so far.

-What appliances can I connect to the S26?

You can connect any appliances you already have at home, as long as they don't need more than 10Amps to work. If you want to connect more than one device, you'll have to do the math and make sure they don't need more than 10Amps. You can't control them individually.

-What's the energy consumption?

Up to 0.5Watts, depending on what the S26 is doing. If you leave it connected for a day, it will use less energy than a single charge of your phone.

-Does it need an internet connection?

You only need an internet connection from the S26 and your phone if you want to remote control it. If you experience any power loss, the S26 needs to connect at least once to Itead servers to set the internal clock.

-Does a power loss erase any other settings?

No, you don't need to configure it all over again.

-Is it water-proof?

No, it isn't.

-Where can I find one?

You can check it here on Amazon

Do you have any other questions? Do you have one already? Head over to the comments section below, if you have anything to say about it.

What's the difference between S20 and S26 models?

ITEAD Studio launched their Sonoff S26 Wi-Fi Smart plug as a more compact and cost-effective upgrade to their Sonoff S20 smart sockets, so they are pretty much the same.

According to the information provided by the Sonoff factory, the technical characteristics, performance, and smartphone app functions of the Sonoff S20 and Sonoff S26 Smart socket are all the same, but the exterior design of the product is different.

What if you want to do more with your S26?

If trickling with hardware is your thing, you can flash a Sonoff S26 with custom firmware to add new features to it that go outside of the manufacturer’s intended use.

In the world of home automation, there's an open-source firmware upgrade called Tasmota for ESP8266 based devices like the S26 that allows you to control it over MQTT or HTTP (among others) for integrations with smart home systems.

Tasmota can unlock your devices, allowing them to communicate with systems and ecosystems that weren't designed to do that.

What are ESP8266 and MQTT?

ESP8266 it's the Wi-Fi chip used in a lot of connected devices.

MQTT is a standardized, lightweight messaging language that utilizes the TCP/IP protocol. MQTT uses what is called a publish-subscribe messaging pattern which means that one device publishes a message and another that is programmed to listen (is subscribed to) receives that message. Then you can create your automation based off of that.

If you want to know more, check this link:

and then go from there.

Sonoff S26 alternatives:

-Amazon Smart Plug

The way it differs from S26 is the focus on Alexa. It doesn't support other voice assistants. It's a good choice because it's simpler to set up and you'll still have your second outlet free. It's also a little more expensive.

-Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug by TP-Link

This plug is also a good alternative from a premium brand.

-Other brands

If you're considering other brands, don't forget that Sonoff has other products that can work with the S26 plug, therefore, increasing its original features and use-cases. It also is very cheap, and that's great if you want to purchase a lot of them.

Sonoff S20/S26 wi-fi smart plug specifications:

-Support 90~ 250V AC input

-Max. input current:10A

-Max. power: 2000W

-802.11 b/g/n

-Wi-Fi @ 2.4 GHz, supports WPA / WPA2 safe mode

-Supports WEP/TKIP/AES Encryption

-Support cloud OTA upgrade

-Standby power consumption is less than 1.0 mW

-Network protocols IPv4, TCP/UDP/HTTP/FTP

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