So I have some (under-reported) news on a few Things I’ve acquired.
I bought a few Things that I had no real reason to believe would work (out of the box) with Smartthings, except for a hunch and some hubris. Some of these Things I bought because the price was right (compared to the alternatives at the time). Another Thing was simply the best-in-class, and I would be outraged if it didn’t work. So here are my first impressions on these devices, keeping in mind that I’m a solid C+ (slightly above-average) when it comes to programming this stuff. I am hindered by the lack of Android phone “presence” capability, along with the fact that I didn’t understand how important motion detectors and presence sensors would be to the success of the Smart Home. Once the Thing Store opens (should be soon according to ST Engineer Andrew Urman), we will all fix this and really be able to take advantage of Magic Modes, etc.
So first, the Yale Real Living Touch Screen Z-Wave lock. It looks better than any Schlage or Kwickset model (I’ve seen all three brand’s offerings), and it also got best-in-class reviews from several Mi Casa Verde/Vera users on their forums. I installed them on front and back doors. By far the easiest to set up using the Yale voice/touch interface (compared to the competitors), it showed up on the ST Hub quickly. It was balky at first in the ST App, and after I contacted support, Andrew Urman informed me that they had the same model in their office and it worked great. They had simply not updated the compatibility spreadsheet in a while. The last Android update seemed to work out the kinks in the ST App. I can unlock the locks with a touch of a button from the ST app, and there is only a 1 or two second lag (usually).
Next. The Intermatic / Home Settings HA01C z-wave In-Wall Receptacle: it works great. I bought four of these because they were going for $17 each (a bit less than GE/Jasco’ s $40 ask). I hear rumors that the range is iffy during setup: i.e. you need the ST Hub to be close (5-15 feet) in order to register one on the system. I installed two (of my four) so far. The first was coincidentally 3’ from the hub, and it installed instantly. The other is 18’ away from the Hub, with one wall in between. It also installed quickly. When I get more motion detectors, it will encourage further installations of the other two receptacles. At this time, they turn on and off easily using the device page on the ST App. Now may be the time to pick up more of these because I think I read a post or two that Intermatic was discontinuing these outlets, and they were selling cheap b/c a few folks bought out the stocks for pennies on the dollar. Any news on this?
How about the 2Gig Z-Wave CT100 Thermostat. I have a two-zone, forced-air HVAC system (first and second floor), and I got two of these for $70 each. They installed easily, and look pretty good. They registered quickly in the ST App. Using my phone, I can switch from heating to cooling, and switch the fan to on, off, or auto. But I can’t change temp from the device page. The device page does update the temp tiles with whatever is programmed directly into the thermostat’s touch screen. I have not tried the thermostat with any modes or more complicated ST Apps, so I have not come close to fully realizing the advantages these thermostats could offer. But they show up in my Things page, and I’ll report back soon once I get all my modes working with time of day and presence sensors, etc.
Lastly: The LimitlessLED bulb, brought to us by Hamish from New Zealand. I have 7 white (60Watt equivalent) and one RGB bulb. They do not work with ST yet. Using the LimitlessLED app on Google Play, I set them up with a light/moderate amount of trouble (one email – returned lighting quick from support – fixed everything). Not a perfect replacement for incandescent, but the variable color temp options make it as good as CFLs, IMO. Hamish is a fairly consistent presence on the ST forums, and he is clearly working to integrate the bulbs with ST. It is curious that it hasn’t clicked yet, and looks like it has something to do with the wifi bridge and wifi nature of the Limitless bulbs. This would be a great hack, as the bulbs are $17ea, and wifi controllable/dimmable from your phone. Much cheaper that in-wall dimmers, though there are advantages to both.
So three out of four of these things pretty much worked out of the box with ST, even though they were ‘not supported’ with any formal indicators. The other Thing (LimitlessLED bulbs) has an interested party working on integration and is a regular contributor on the BUILD boards. All in all, I’m impressed with all the support for this whole ST effort, even as it’s in its extreme infancy.
I’d love to hear other success stories about under-the-radar Things, and I’ll do my best to keep this thread updated with future successes (and failures)!