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> Xiaomi MiJia Smart Door Lock Comprehensive Review, Review updated 17/9/19 (Guide)

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TShikashi
post Jul 26 2019, 10:41 PM, updated 4w ago

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Introduction


Launched in December 2018, Xiaomi finally expanded its MiJia branded IoT into smart door lock.
It features 6 ways of unlocking the door without compromising much of its main feature as security door lock.
Any new release from Xiaomi is really exciting because they offer equivalent tech specification at an affordable low price.
The MiJia Smart Door Lock is no exception. Currently it is on sale officially only in China for RMB1299.
Interested consumer who like to expand their Mi Home IoT products can get it locally from Shopee or Lazada for approximately RM999.
At this price point, it is half the price of the equivalent mortise digital lock offered by other reputable brand.
Furthermore, being part of the Mi Home app ecosystem, the capacity for automation is practically limitless! More on that later.

Unboxing


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The Mijia Smart Door Lock is ordered from a reputable online local store and arrived to my door step the very next day.
The content itself weighs at approximately more than 5 kg, so you might need to be mindful of the shipping fee.

Inside of the box you would see:

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User manual and dimension guide

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Mortise body

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Grade-C lock core, 2 sets of physical key, NiCd batteries, black square spindles and screws for installations.

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Strike plate

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and, the digital handles inside and outside.

This post has been edited by hikashi: Feb 9 2020, 10:21 PM
TShikashi
post Jul 26 2019, 10:41 PM

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Installation
DIY installing this digital lock is no easy feat, as it requires some experience with power tools.
It took me almost half a day to manually chisel a larger mortise hole, grinding of excess length, cabling, and app setup.
An experience door smith could do it half of the time.

This part of the review is not meant to be an installation guide, however i'll share my experience of installing the digital door lock here.

Video installation guide can be found here:


Tools used for installation:
-Wood chisel
-Hammer
-Screwdriver
-Angle grinder
-Power drill
-Glove and safety goggle (safety first!)

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This is the original mortise lock provided the developer. The thickness is 36mm like most Malaysian door.
Although it is mentioned for 40mm to 80mm door, the black square spindle and some screw can be cut shorten to fit into the thinner door.

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Widening the mortise hole. Extra care need to be taken to avoid breaking the thin layer of wood from the mortise.

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Warning! If you plan to install this lock into a wooden door, you need to cut off the 3-point latch as shown above. Else, you will not be able to lock the door properly.
To cut the 3-point latch, use the black square spindle to rotate the handle hole and expand the bolt and the 3-point latch. Cut the latch with angle grinder.

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Final installation

My experiences on installation:
- Cutting the mortise is taxing. Fitting in the lock with all the cables into the door is another challenge. You might need to cut bigger hole than the provided dimension guide just to fit in the cables.
- Do not over tighten the screw as it might affect the lock mechanism
- Don't forget to lubricate the lock!

Cutout template. You can use this as reference for your door and door trim where to cut.
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This post has been edited by hikashi: Sep 25 2019, 08:28 PM
TShikashi
post Jul 26 2019, 10:42 PM

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Build Quality
One thing i like about XiaoMi Mijia Door Lock is it has a discrete look and doesnt scream "hey look at me! im a smartdoor lock!".
The frame and the handle of the door lock is made of metal with a smooth matte finish that is nice to touch.
The outdoor panel is said to be tempered glass but i do noticed some micro scratch.
The internal panel however is a removable glossy plastic and it may be prone to scratches.
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At the bottom of the outdoor panel we have speakers and micro usb slot to be inserted with powerbank when the internal battery run empty.

Mijia Door Lock Stress Test



Setup

Setup is pretty straight forward.
All you need is install Mi Home app on your android or ios.
Login into China Mainland server.
Make sure your bluetooth on the phone is turned on, and the battery on the door lock is in place.
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Add the Mi Smart Door Lock either manually or automatically on the Mi Home app.
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You will be prompted to add new passcode on the app for added security. You may choose use fingerprint to unlock later on.


Managing User

To setup user, you will need to be in within range of your phone bluetooth connection with the door lock.
You can add two types of user:
User
- Meant for visitors
- Limited to daily unlocking function (deadbolt cannot be unlock when locked from inside)

Admin
-Full range of unlocking
-Able to reset the door lock

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This post has been edited by hikashi: Jul 31 2019, 03:29 PM
TShikashi
post Jul 31 2019, 04:20 PM

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Features

Xiaomi MiJia Door Lock is a semi-automatic style digital lock which it does not have self-latching function.
Latching the dead bolt lock requires physical operation by swinging the handle upward.
However, this doesnt mean this Mijia Door Lock dont have automatic lock function.

Instead, Mijia Door Lock runs on "clutch mechanism" where the handle and latch always decoupled.
Swinging the handle will not engage the latch when it is decoupled.
user posted image

The latch bolt will remain inoperative until:
- "Anti cat-eye" button is pressed from the indoor panel, or
- Door lock is unlocked either with fingerprint, passcode, bluetooth, NFC, or physical key.

Mijia Door Lock has 3 level of security:
1) Door is closed and locked with the latch bolt as described above.
2) 3 deadbolt lock by swinging the handle upward from indoor or outdoor handle
3) Single deadbolt lock by turning the knob from the indoor panel. When the door is locked from the inside, only user with the Admin access can unlock the lock from the outside. User without admin access will not be able to unlock the door.

When the door is not closed properly or door is not locked, a gentle notification will ring to notify you of the situation.

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The Mi Home door lock app also comes with log so you can trace any activity i.e. door lock status, time entry, etc.
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This post has been edited by hikashi: Sep 17 2019, 11:03 PM
TShikashi
post Jul 31 2019, 04:21 PM

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Unlocking

This Mijia Smart Door Lock boast 6 ways to unlock, mainly:
Fingerprint
Password
Bluetooth
NFC
Physical key

Fingerprint
Fingerprint setup requires MiHome app and in close proximity with the doorlock via direct bluetooth connection. Remote connection with bluetooth gateway will not work.

To setup new fingerprint, go to the door lock MiHome app, manage user and then add fingerprint. Place thumb finger or any other finger on the fingerprint scanner on the door handle for a few time, and done!

To unlock, place your thumb on the scanner. A white led ring will shine if the unlock successful, and a red led ring will appear if unsuccessful.
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From my experience, the fingerprint scanner tends to fail with wet finger. And the scanning is not as blazing fast as the one in smartphone. A brief pause is required to validate the fingerprint, and then turn the handle to open the door. Scanning accuracy is on point as long as the finger is dry.

Password
You can set 3 type of password mainly:
User Password
A 6-12 number character can be added via manage user page. The password is tied to the user. Close proximity bluetooth connection required during setup.

Periodic Password
A 6-12 number character password can be added via setting page. The time validity of the password can be controlled. Close proximity bluetooth connection is required during setup. Best use for nanny, home cleaner or AirBNB!
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One time Password
This one time password works like an authenticator. Password can only be viewed on setting page and password generated can only be used once within 15 minutes. No connection is required. Best used for visiting relative while you are away.
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To enter via passcode, tap on the panel once to light up the keypad. Enter the correct passcode and press ✅ to confirm.

One cool implementation with the passcode unlock is its anti-peeping system. Say you have a passcode of 123456. You can enter any giberish number with your actual passcode in between. For example, entering 58892[123456]213 will unlock the door successfully. Anyone will have a hard time guessing the correct passcode.

If passcode is entered incorrectly for 5 times, the alarm will sound and passcode entry will be denied for 5 minute.

Bluetooth
I do find this pointless when you have fingerprint and passcode as an option. Otherwise, its a welcomed addition. To unlock using bluetooth, place your phone in close proximity with the door lock and bluetooth turned on. Head to the smartdoor lock app and long press the middle of lock icon on the main page to unlock. Unlocking using Bluetooth gateway will not work for obvious safety reason.
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NFC
I personally do not have experience with this as I do not have XiaoMi smartphone with NFC and MiBand 4 NFC edition as it only works with aforementioned devices. External chinese reviewers did mention NFC unlock is as cumbersome as bluetooth unlock. To unlock with NFC, u will need to open xiaomi NFC app, unlock app with finger print, and then place the phone on the NFC sensor on the panel. Which really defeat the purpose when you can place fingerprint directly on the doorlock.
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Cant say the same for mi band 4. I'll update here when i have more information.

Physical key
2 sets of physical key are included in the box. Keys are made in dimple bump style for added security. (Yeah, you can insert lockpickinglawyer meme here). Any force entry attempt on the keyhole or key left on the keyhole for a period of time will trigger the alarm.

It is best practice to carry a physical key along for emergency purposes.

Automation
A door lock will not be called a smart door if there is no home automation associated to it! However, to enable this feature, a Bluetooth gateway is required. This MiJia smartdoor runs on BLE connectivity to conserve power instead of WiFi therefore a BLE gateway is needed for its IoT function.

Here i used xiaomi digital alarm clock as the BLE gateway. There are other BLE gateway that is compatible like Mi Bedside Lamp. Make sure the device is connected on China server.
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BLE gateway connection is fully automatic so no further setup required. Status of the smart door will appear on the BLE gateway page when successful.

Once setup, you can set near any automation rule with any connected xiaomi device. Like, sending notification to phone when break in. Turning on mi vacuum or yeelight when enter using certain passcode. When condition is met you can even set DaFang camera to pan towards targeted area and upload to cloud!

Here is the list of the 'if' function related to the smartdoor.
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Final thought
Although this is my first ownership experience with smartdoor lock, i am overall really satisfied with the lock as it does it job as a smart device and as a door lock.

Pros:
Excellent built quality.
Seemingly weatherproof
Real smart device with wide possibilities of automation rule
Sleek and discreet design
Fingerprint sensor strategically located on the door handle.
Beautiful App UI
Thoughtful safety features.

Cons:
Fingerprint detection can be hit and miss when finger is wet
Fingerprint reader can be a tad faster
Redundant Bluetooth and NFC unlocking function
No Zigbee connectivity.
Some part of the app riddled with poor english translation.
Some physical alterations are needed to fit into thinner door.

This post has been edited by hikashi: Sep 17 2019, 10:57 PM
gacktleong
post Jul 31 2019, 05:19 PM

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powered by battery? what if the power drained off? any way to open the door manually?
TShikashi
post Jul 31 2019, 05:21 PM

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QUOTE(gacktleong @ Jul 31 2019, 05:19 PM)
powered by battery? what if the power drained off? any way to open the door manually?
*
You can use a physical key provided, or plug in power bank into the panel. Battery can last at least 1.5 year.
idoblu
post Aug 16 2019, 08:03 PM

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nice review 👍🏼
zenix
post Aug 19 2019, 11:44 PM

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used it for few months hows the feedback?
backup battery got?
TShikashi
post Aug 20 2019, 10:12 AM

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QUOTE(zenix @ Aug 19 2019, 11:44 PM)
used it for few months hows the feedback?
backup battery got?
*
still working nicely.
Theres no backup battery, and i dont see the need of it too.

zenix
post Aug 20 2019, 05:15 PM

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does it work with unlocking via flash cards?
TShikashi
post Aug 20 2019, 06:51 PM

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QUOTE(zenix @ Aug 20 2019, 05:15 PM)
does it work with unlocking via flash cards?
*
Nope. I tried register some nfc cards but fail. So far to my knowledge, the nfc only work with xiaomi devices
zenix
post Aug 21 2019, 01:43 AM

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oic so now you open close using the phone?
TShikashi
post Aug 21 2019, 10:07 AM

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QUOTE(zenix @ Aug 21 2019, 01:43 AM)
oic so now you open close using the phone?
*
finger print.
chleiu
post Sep 2 2019, 09:47 PM

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How do I connect to the smart door lock when I'm away from home? Say for example if I want to set temporary periodic password for my guest, I'm unable to set it due to my phone is not connected to the lock. No issue for one time password though. I've heard that it can be linked with some Xiaomi devices which connect to home wifi, and the device can then link it to the door lock remotely and able to set the password. But I'm not sure if it can works.

This post has been edited by chleiu: Sep 2 2019, 09:49 PM
TShikashi
post Sep 3 2019, 06:33 AM

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QUOTE(chleiu @ Sep 2 2019, 09:47 PM)
How do I connect to the smart door lock when I'm away from home? Say for example if I want to set temporary periodic password for my guest, I'm unable to set it due to my phone is not connected to the lock. No issue for one time password though. I've heard that it can be linked with some Xiaomi devices which connect to home wifi, and the device can then link it to the door lock remotely and able to set the password. But I'm not sure if it can works.
*
Bluetooth gateway is needed for remote access.
But, only for 1 time password. We cant setup new user remotely for safety reason.
haturaya
post Sep 3 2019, 06:53 AM

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Nice review.
saturnx
post Sep 17 2019, 05:16 PM

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Been surveying around for xiaomi smart locks and found your post from another forum. Really informative and paints a better understanding of the product.

My existing door only uses one dead bolt, was wondering if the 3 (middle) dead bolts can be disabled?
TShikashi
post Sep 17 2019, 07:36 PM

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QUOTE(saturnx @ Sep 17 2019, 05:16 PM)
Been surveying around for xiaomi smart locks and found your post from another forum. Really informative and paints a better understanding of the product.

My existing door only uses one dead bolt, was wondering if the 3 (middle) dead bolts can be disabled?
*
Technically you can, you just unable to turn upward. It kinda defeat the purpose if you disable it.
TShikashi
post Sep 17 2019, 11:05 PM

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Final review updated!

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