Using iPhone as Presence sensor


(Joel W) #1

Can someone tell me the size of the Geo Fence using an iPhone. Assume developement all one story buildings 40 wide streets. I don’t know for sure what to expect. It has been a very long time since I tried Geo Fencing with a phone.


#2

Mine was adjustable. I selected an area about 1 block square.


(Mark) #3

The smallest radius you can set in the ST app is about 500 feet.


(Joel W) #4

Yes thank you, I wish it could be smaller as I don’t feel that secure with the 500 foot.


(Mark) #5

AFAIK that is a limitation of GPS-based geofencing in general.

You could look into using iBeacons, some of which have a much smaller detection radius, if you wanted to trigger certain actions based on the presence/absence of your phone.


(Joel W) #6

Is there a suggested brand of iBeacons that work well with SmartThings?


(Mark) #7

Search through some of the threads with “iBeacon” as a keyword.


#8

No Ibeacons work directly with SmartThings, because they are Bluetooth devices. But you can use the beacons with a phone or tablet and then use that information to update a virtual presence sensor. So it’s not as straightforward as just using phone presence or the zigbee arrival sensor, but it can be done. See the following:


(Joel W) #9

So I am up to searching for the best option. My thing with geo fencing is that when you live in a community where the houses side to side are 30 feet apart and front to front maybe 100 feet apart, that includes the street sidewalk and lawns. So if I am at a neighbor the geo fence will think I am home, not a good thing. At least for security, or environmental things. I will have to think on this. Maybe geo fencing isn’t the way to go for my situation. Beacons might be better but a lot more involved setting up.


#10

We use our Ibeacons at my house and they work very well for me. I want my detection zone limited to the wheelchair ramp at my front door, which is about 3 m long. And that’s it. As I’ve mentioned before, I have an issue that when I arrive on the bus it can take the bus driver several minutes to get me unloaded, and I don’t want my house to shift to Home mode while I’m still on the bus.

But it is more complicated set up, it does require using other services as well, and it take some trial and error testing to get it right. That was worth it to me, it may not be worth it to everyone.


#11

Radbeacons


#12

You need to do a video of your HA setup sometime. It’s gotta be crazy.


(Joel W) #13

Is there a tutorial for setting the Beacons up?


#14

If you have an iPhone, you can make it work by using the third-party app beecon+ Which costs about $10.

The following thread is two years old and I don’t honestly know if it still works as I’m using it differently these days, but it would be a place to start:


(Joel W) #15

OK thanks, I will take a look. Is there a brand of Beacons you feel are worth the cost?


#16

RadBeacons are good from Radius Networks. I really like estimotes but those are a high-end brand. I have had less luck with the Geohopper from two canoes.

Both radbeacons and estimotes have good developer communities and good tech support.


(Joel W) #17

Which are the easiest to setup? Do I just install this and follow the directions on your link https://github.com/davglass/st-beacon-bacon