For over a year now, I’ve owned 7 Belkin wall outlet switches and 3 light switches that I’ve been using with an Apple AirPort Extreme (5th Generation) router. We’re an all iOS & Mac OS X household and we’ve had absolutely no issues controlling the WeMo devices under iOS with the official Belkin WeMo app over Wi-Fi or at&t 4G. I’ve even configured the front porch light (WeMo Light Switch) and a small bedroom lamp (WeMo Wall Outlet) to use IFTTT on a sun up / sundown EST schedule.
Last week, I purchased a SmartThings hub from Amazon, and I finally got around to setting it up last night.
After getting the SmartThings hub unpacked and connected to the router, I installed the WeMo Connect SmartThings Labs app and started searching for my WeMo outlet & wall switches. The good news is that after about 5 minutes, the SmartThings hub found every WeMo switch in my house. I’ve also been able to configure all 10 switches inside of the SmartThings Dashboard / Things panel and I’ve also been able to configure the Dashboard / Lights & Switches panel with short cuts for Living Room (3 WeMo wall switches), Master Bedroom (1 WeMo wall switch and 1 light switch), and a kids bedroom (3 WeMo wall switches).
The bad news is that I haven’t been able to reliably control any of the WeMo wall outlet or light switches using the SmartThings Dashboard / Things or Lights & Switches short cut panels over Wi-Fi or at&t 4G.
My experiences under Dashboard / Things has been sometimes the lights turn on immediately (as they should) to hanging on TURNINGON or TURNINGOFF and never fully completing the ON or OFF command. The only way to get the tile to fix itself from one of those two states, is to click the little gears icon of the light in question, and then hit refresh about 3 times to get the tile icon to reset itself to the correct state of either being truly ON or OFF.
My experiences under Dashboard / Lights & Switches has been anything from all lights coming on or off successfully (as they should) to a random mix of some lights (1 out of 3, 2 out of 3, etc.) as being turned all on or all off. The only way to get all the lights to successfully turn all on or all off when they get out of sync is to simply keep pushing the shortcut over and over under all lights are either all on or all off.
This is all very frustrating to say the least. While I’m no software programmer, I almost feel as if there isn’t a long enough for / next loop for firing off the on or off command to multiple switches. I think the SmartThings hub is firing off the commands to multiple switches so fast that it isn’t keeping track of which switches have successfully turn themselves on or off.
While trying to figure out why the SmartThings hub / app isn’t working correctly, I’d periodically flip over to the official Belkin WeMo app and without fail, I could reliable control all switches throughout the household with no issues. So it appears to me to be a problem with the SmartThings hub / application.
1.) Have I overlooked some basic setup task that is causing my issues with the WeMo switches not functioning correctly under the SmartThings hub / application? (Again, for over a year, I’ve had no issues with the switches and the official Belkin WeMo iOS app.)
2.) Is there another brand of switches out there that I should be looking at that function better with the SmartThings hub? If so, I’d rather cut my losses now and dump my WeMo switches on eBay before I make any more investment in WeMos.
3.) Is the flaky behavior I’m experiencing with the WeMo hardware about the same with other hardware brands like Z-Wave, etc? If so, I’d rather return the SmartThings hub and get my money back while I wait for the home automation hub technology to improve.
I’m really hoping that I’ve overlooked something simple in the setup phase since I feel that it’s real close to working perfectly!