1. Kayza's Avatar
    I'm looking to move to some smart technology in my house. I'm looking primarily at smart switch and smart plugs that can effectively manage the appliances attached to them.

    I got a TP-link switch and although it's usable, I'm not a happy camper. Their tech support FINALLY helped me to get the plug functioning but it was a mighty struggle. And, with all that I still can't do remote control, just local.

    I'm looking for something that works without jumping through a bazillion hoops, or has decent tech support. Beyond that I'd like, in this order, the ability to manage the plug or switch remotely (without needing a new hub preferably - and if I do, make it clear in the description!); works with IFTTT - and can both trigger and be triggered by IFTTT. (The TP-link apparently can't do either.); works with google assistant.

    I'm not so much looking to control stuff by voice, although I find the ability intriguing, but scheduling stuff, and managing remotely.

    I'd love your thoughts - both on specific items that meet my criteria, but even more so on what you would be looking for and why.

    06-09-2017 07:52 PM
  2. kigmatzomat's Avatar
    (thread necromancy)

    I don't understand why people want to use IFTTT-based tech. It's a company with no revenue stream currently spending investor money to achieve a state of dominance in the iot world, at which point it will demand revenues from someone.

    Scenario A, they charge users and you have to decide if their costs are reasonable or if your ifttt-dependent gear is now junk.
    Scenario B, they charge manufacturers and then the manufacturer gets to decide if your ifttt-dependent gear is junk.
    Scenario C, they go out of business and your IFTTT-based equipment is junk
    Scenario D, they get bought by Company X and all IFTTT-based gear not from Company X is junk.

    On the security front, ifttt-dependent devices are wifi, just like all those IP cameras, and you just added botnet risks to your house. That ignore the security risk posed by ifttt itself.

    And then you are utterly dependent on the internet for automation. I have never lived anywhere that the internet is reliable enough to trust my thermostat with, let alone depend on it for controlling door locks.

    If you really want to get into home automation, get real home automation devices that are cross-compatible with multiple controllers. Right now that means zwave and Insteon. Insteon also provides x10 support, proving that decent home automation tech can be long lived. ZigBee should be on the list but very few manufacturers follow the standards so it's a land of proprietary command sets using shared radios (darn it).

    I have a veraplus as my zwave controller ($125 @ Amazon) which seems pricey until you compare it to my $1300ish in zwave devices: 2 door locks, 3 motion sensors, 3 door sensors, 4 wall switches, 3 hue bulbs, 3 outlets, doorbell/announcer, thermostat, garage door controller, smoke detector, flood detector, 4 remotes and a power monitor. Spending 10% on the actual brains that integrate all those devices into a system is a bit of a steal imho.

    All the automation lives on the controller. It has some logic that uses internet sources as inputs (weather alerts, Google calendar, Alexa, Google home) but all the rules and actions exist on the vera.

    If the vera dies, I can get another one or get a different brand of controller and keep all my devices. If the company goes under, veras aren't dependent on cloud services for anything besides remote control and I can add that to my network with a VPN if I don't want to migrate.

    The same goes for Homeseer and ISY controllers.

    Smartthings is very cloud dependent and wink 2 still requires the cloud to make rule changes, much like Zipato so they are essentially like iffttt.
    07-30-2017 09:46 AM

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