Insteon is down

Might be an ungraceful exit of the industry. And if anyone do not understand why full local control is important, then think what you would do in a situation like this.

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That does not look good at all.

Yeah, that one is scary. Basically all cloud services have stopped functioning AND reportedly the company’s phone and chat lines are down as well. All with no notice to customers.

If it was a Denial of Service attack, I’d expect some kind of public announcement somewhere, but so far, nothing.

Local operations are still working through home assistant, which you would expect. But many system changes are not possible because those can require cloud services.

Probably legal depending on their Terms of Service (just as an example, SmartThings could shut down their cloud tomorrow and customers would have no legal basis to complain: the TOS that every customer agrees to when they set up an account says ST can end any service at any time without prior notice). In this kind of situation, customers are relying on a company’s fear of bad publicity to prevent sudden shutdowns, but that doesn’t always work.

Anyway, unsettling for sure.

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I hope the best for all Insteon users. The recent topics on Reddit are not so optimistic.

Regarding bad publicity, if it will go down the way how it seems to happened, without any notice, what are those top managers thinking about their next career move?

Almost certainly any individuals below CEO will say it wasn’t their role to make public statements and the lawyers told them not to. I don’t recall any individuals below the founder/CEO being criticized when Revolv shut down, for example.

Aartech, a Canadian retailer Who had been an authorized Insteon seller, have put up a good page on some alternatives for people who had been depending on Insteon cloud services. These include home assistant, some ISY or Homeseer options, and possibly Hubitat. Some of their suggestions are for people who want to keep their insteon devices running, others are for people looking for a total replacement platform.

Details:

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Some requires an extra piece of hardware as I understand, and that is a bit troublesome as prices hike.

Understood, it’s a question of whether someone wants to keep their existing switches and plugs or not. If they do, they may be able to switch to one of the alternative hubs. It’s not a great option, but it may be better for some people than just throwing everything out. :thinking:

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That really sucks. What a bad way to treat people. Now the CEO is completely off LinkedIn and probably elsewhere online—knowing how bad they did all their customers.

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The shocking is the current level of publicity of the topic, but still nobody has said any word officially.

The Canadian official reseller, Aartech, has been left in the dark without a notice either.

So no communication to business partners, neither to customers.

And the (former) CEO probably still thinks that it will be forgotten and will be able to do business as before.

It is a shame of the industry.

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Official word:

https://www.insteon.com/news2022

tl;dr - blame COVID, sale fell through

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Consequently, the company was assigned to a financial services firm in March to optimize the assets of the company.

Does that mean, they shut down the servers to save money?

And this announcement took 6 days?

In a civilised world, you make an announcement first and the last one turns off the light.

Anyhow, it is good to see that after that many years @Ben is still reading the community forum and joins the discussion. It shows a high level of commitment to the product what you created at the first place. Thanks!

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There is light at the end of the tunnel. Insteon has now been officially integrated for use in Home Assistant. I know that will not suit everyone but it’s an option.

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There are several systems that have Insteon integrations, including Homeseer, HOOBS, Hubitat, and Home Assistant.

It’s important to understand that none of those can talk directly to an Insteon switch, because Insteon uses a proprietary communication protocol and they don’t have the right radios.

Instead, all of the integrations work by having the new platform communicate with an existing Insteon hub or bridge via a nonproprietary protocol.

The good news is that means using one of the integrations will let you bring the information from the existing Insteon hub into the new platform’s app and send requests back to the existing Insteon hub so it can control Insteon switches and plugs as you request.

The bad news is once the existing Insteon hub dies, there are no replacements, so all your other Insteon devices become unusable.

So these integrations will definitely be a good interim choice for many people, but they will only work for as long as the Insteon hub lasts. Just another planning factor to include. :thinking:

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To a layperson like me it sounds more like liquidation, though what I think liquidation is and what liquidation actually is could be significantly different things.

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This statement from the company’s website

Consequently, the company was assigned to a financial services firm in March to optimize the assets of the company.

Means they haven’t yet filed for bankruptcy. (in the US, “bankruptcy” is a court procedure used by both individuals and corporations: in the UK, the similar process for companies is called “liquidation.”) But they likely don’t have enough money to pay their bills, so the three options are sale of the whole company, sale of individual assets to raise cash, or bankruptcy.

It sounds like they’ve turned everything over to a company that does financial analysis to determine if whole or partial sale is possible, and if not, to move forward with bankruptcy. “Optimize the assets” typically means identify parts that can be sold and restructuring to generate more revenue from what’s left.

Turning off the servers is hugely damaging to the brand and customer relations and undoubtedly lowers the value of the company as a whole, but they may be able to do as Wink did: sell off parts, restructure the business model, come to a deal with creditors, and limp along as a much smaller going concern. (It is amazing to me that Wink is still in business 5 years after their similar incident, but as of this post it is.)

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Not knowing that Insteon servers were down, yesterday I sent a support request. I received this response today:

E-Notice Service

April 21, 2022
Insteon Users: Important Notice to Creditors
DISCLAIMER: Please do not reply to this e-mail. This is an unmonitored address, and replies to this e-mail cannot be responded to or read. If you have any questions, please visit:

The “E-Notice Service” link states this:

1
April 12, 2022
SMARTLABS, INC. ) NOTICE OF ASSIGNMENT FOR
) THE BENEFIT OF CREDITORS
) AND DEADLINE FOR
) SUBMITTING CLAIMS
_______________________________________ )
TO ALL CREDITORS AND EQUITYHOLDERS OF SMARTLABS, INC. AND OTHER PARTIES IN INTEREST:
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that on March 22, 2022, SmartLabs, Inc. (“SmartLabs” or “Assignor”), a California
corporation (EIN: 33-0557391) with offices at 1621 Alton Parkway, Suite 100, Irvine, California 92606 United
States as assignor, made a General Assignment for the Benefit of Creditors (the “Assignment”) to SmartLabs
(ABC), LLC (“Assignee”), a California limited liability company, as assignee, pursuant to California state law. The
Assignment of Assignor previously was approved by Assignor’s stockholders holding the requisite majority of the
company’s stock. This correspondence constitutes notice under Section 228(e) of the Delaware General
Corporation Law for corporate action taken without a stockholders’ meeting by less than unanimous written
consent of the Company’s stockholders.
PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that with the exception of the relationship created by the Assignment, and
despite their similarity in name, Assignor and Assignee have no corporate affiliation to each other. A true and
correct copy of the document evidencing the Assignment can be downloaded from the following website
(www.FileAClaim.info/SmartLabs-ABC). Pursuant to the Assignment, Assignor transferred ownership of all its
rights in tangible and intangible assets (collectively, the “Assets”) including intellectual property, equipment,
furniture, and other recoveries to Assignee for liquidation. Assignee shall attempt to liquidate the Assets and,
at the same time, conduct a process to monetize the furniture and equipment, and shall wind down Assignor
and distribute the net liquidation proceeds to creditors of Assignor who timely submit claims as instructed
below.
PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that all entities asserting any claim against Assignor must submit a proof of claim
and proper supporting documentation no later than September 18, 2022 (the “Bar Date”). Claims can be filed
electronically using a form located at the following landing page (www.FileAClaim.info/SmartLabs-ABC).
Alternatively, a statement regarding your claim and related documentation may be sent to the following address.
You may include a self-addressed, stamped envelope with sufficient postage to confirm receipt:
SmartLabs (ABC), LLC
c/o Claims Administration
231 Market Place, Suite 373
San Ramon, California 94583
Any claimant who fails to timely submit a claim, postmarked on or before the Bar Date, in accordance with the
instructions set forth above, shall be barred from sharing in any distribution from the net liquidation proceeds,
if applicable, and shall not receive any distribution from Assignee as it relates to this matter.
Dated: April 12, 2022
BY: SmartLabs (ABC), LLC
In its sole and limited capacity as
Assignee FBO Creditors of SmartLabs, Inc.
231 Market Place, Suite 373
San Ramon, California 94583
United States

With the resources of the Internet, you can almost always find something from years ago that seems eerily prophetic to cover almost any situation. (Of course, you can almost always find something 100% wrong as well. Every opinion is represented somewhere. :wink:)

Still, I found this 2019 thread from the ISY forum an interesting read. (The topic title is a clickable link.)

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This is quite harsh after not saying anything to the users and business partners at the first place.

This story is really a shame of the industry.

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