Automated home window opener project help

window opener model

I am working on a motorized/automated window opener with some friends. We are trying to build some thing sleek and nice looking that people would want to have in their homes. Our plan is to use motors on either side of the windows to push up/down or move side to side. Hopefully add some sensors to keep it from accidently closing on things or trip if someone tries to come in through windows. We think there is an opportunity and a lot of creative things that can be done with it, especially in areas w/ moderate climates. One of the questions we are debating is using wifi vs zigbee for communication between device and app. With wifi devices becoming more reliable in terms of connection, is there a major benefit to using zigbee and hub vs just wifi these days? Particularly in this kind of project? Other thoughts on the matter always welcome.

The main advantage to zigbee over Wi-Fi is the much lower power utilization, which has historically made it a much better choice for battery powered devices. A typical battery powered sensor, for example, will usually get one or even two years of battery life, while the exact same sensor using Wi-Fi might need new batteries every three months.

There are also some advantages in that some budget priced Wi-Fi routers can only handle up to 32 simultaneous devices while Zigbee can usually handle hundreds, or even more. But the newer routers do typically have higher max devices, and some manufacturers figure that’s an issue for the customer to worry about, not them.

The main advantage to Wi-Fi is that it can have broader customer acceptance just because it feels simpler even if it sort of isn’t. :wink: there’s also the potential for simpler Matter Integration, which could be important in the future.

There are already some automated window openers on the market. Some of them work with smartthings and there have been a couple of project reports on those. As you may know, one of the biggest issues with these is safety as you can literally kill someone with the wrong design. Or cut off a finger or hurt a pet. So you want to have a bump stop sensor and that sort of thing.

Also, you have to consider the situation where there’s a storm and the power goes off when the window is partway open. When the power comes back on, you want to make sure that the actuator doesn’t try to extend past the window’s open position or you can break the glass. So you will see these type of safety features built into most of the commercially available products.

Also, as you may already know as well, most of the big retail stores, such as Home Depot in the US, will only carry devices which are UL certified. So that’s just another area to research.

If you’d like to look at some of the existing project reports on this topic, they should be on the following list, along with project reports on automated curtains and shades.

Good luck: we can always use more devices in this category! :sunglasses:

BTW, Olide makes both motorized door openers and window openers at very competitive prices. They are using Wi-Fi now, but of course it’s also a Mains powered device so they don’t have to worry much about the power utilization. So it might be worth looking at those, since they will probably be major competition for your project.

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