Alternative to harmony?

I have had nothing but problems with my two Harmony smart hubs.

I have had several tickets open and calls to Logitech but the issue is wifi and lockup related.

They cannot fix it and it is not working on the wife scale (she hate that it doesn’t work).

Basically I am back to using multiple remotes.

The support haven’t been helpful at all.

Just curious, what are the issues you are experiencing?

there is a new product expected to start shipping in February but not integrated with ST.

Mind you this has been going on a year…

  1. Remote and app unresponsive when trying to use navigation buttons

  2. Harmony slow to issue command (nothing is blocking it)

  3. The biggest issue is the hub will turn red and I assume it is a WiFi issue. The remote and app don’t work. It can last a few minutes or more.

For the last one this is the only device I have issues with on my wifi. No other devices are interfering (especially zigbee as I changed the wifi channel on my router which fix an old issue a long time ago on my zigbee devices from knocking off the network).

I have at least 10 tickets in. I was on the phone for over an hour today. I reset the firmware, power cycled and reset the hub. I resyncd twice. When we were done the hub turned on (green light right now) but the directional keys on the rote aren’t working.

Two Harmony hubs and no issues myself (unless you share too many devices from ST into it). Otherwise there’s this:

This is good but the WAF wouldn’t work without a physical remote

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Wow that is quite expensive

I had this discussion with my co worker last week who was in search of a good universal remote solution. Harmony is the leader of the pack and there isn’t a close second. I am not saying they are the best, but they appeal to the most.

They offer the most integrations and most end users can use it easily. That being said, it’s not perfect and I wish there was more serious competition in the space that appeal to most users. I have 4 Harmony Hubs and when they work, they are great. When they don’t, which is about 10% of the time, it’s quite frustrating.

Truly. WAF is at an all-time low.

All of the primary consumer products competition use WiFi as well, so you are likely to have the same problems with those, unfortunately. That includes remotesy. They all use Wi-Fi to allow SmartThings to send them a signal, then they can send an infrared signal to the AV equipment.

There are alternatives that are ethernet based, although they are more commonly used for offices and commercial buildings.

But That just gets the signals to the television, you still need some kind of server device to Control what signals to send when. And something to integrate it to SmartThings. And none of that is going to give you a button remote that you can hold in your hand as well.

So I would suggest dividing it into two problems.

If you just want a universal handheld remote, go ahead and get one that doesn’t use Wi-Fi but just depends on direct IR signals to the devices in the room. There are lots of these.

Then you can consider whether you want to go ahead and put in a server based system to allow for SmartThings control of your home theater equipment.

One option would be to get the global cache unit which uses ethernet rather than Wi-Fi, and then add hambridge running on a mac mini to run the integration between smartthings and the global cache.

Setup is certainly going to be much more complex than with Harmony, but you would end up with the ability to do a full integration with SmartThings. The only thing is that the button remote in this scenario can’t initiate anything in SmartThings, you would be running to parallel systems. The handheld remote for use in the room and the server/global cache for integration with SmartThings and One of the voice assistants as well if you want that (which would be going through SmartThings).

If it was me, I would probably bring somebody in to figure out why the Harmony isn’t working. Maybe you could move the hub Close to an access point and run some longer IR emitter cables. Maybe you need a different router or just a different Wi-Fi channel. But given the number of home entertainment devices now that rely on Wi-Fi, personally I would like to get a good Wi-Fi signal near my television. But that’s just me.

But if you want a real alternative that doesn’t use Wi-Fi, the global cache ethernet-based equipment is excellent and widely used, but again the technical set up is much more complex.

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It’s hard to beat Harmony Hubs. Add Alexa and you are all set.

Your not running a Draytek router by any chance are you?

No nighthawk

I just added a tp link extender and a Chinese pro. We will see if they help with the wifi issues.

Check you don’t have any form of Client Isolation turned on too (on any of your devices), that’ll cut traffic from the WiFi (harmony) to the SmartThings hub (wired)

Where would that be?

In your router, or maybe in your WiFi exptenders if they have that feature built in.

This MIGHT help, I’ve never personally used one of them routers:

Xiaomi Smart Home Kit looks like an interesting alternative. Also, Samsung SmartThings Smart Home Hub looks like an interesting option. In these article you have some interesting alternatives:
Best Logitech Harmony Hub Alternatives