Q&A: Home Automation - November 2016

We've got a recurring theme happening on this Q&A: Why doesn't this connected thing work with that connected thing?

This is a longer video, and as usual the start times of the questions are inserted below if you'd like to skip directly to a particular question:

Starts at 1:12
From Rob W

I'm slowly adding "smarter" things to my home, starting with a Philips Hue white light starter set.  I'm an apple user, and like the idea of staying with HomeKit devices.

I'm eventually going to be adding smoke detectors and leak detectors, the main reason for adding automation. I know insteon has a leak detector, which you reviewed.  If I go that way, it makes sense to stick with insteon switches, but their Pro hub for HomeKit doesn't play well with sensors.

I've heard the Lutron dimmer switches are good, but now that's adding a different hub.  I honestly like the look of the Insteon better, the mesh network as opposed to Bluetooth to the hub sounds good, but that pro hub has issues for the insteon.

Any suggestions between Insteon and the Lutron?

Also, it seems like amazons Alexa works really good for home control, does it work in the same house with HomeKit?  Would Siri and Alexa be able to function together, or trying to use both, will that cause problems?

Any suggestions?


Starts at 11:43
From Clay W

I just installed a Schlage Connect lock on my front door (model BE469NXCAM605), a Z-Wave enable lock.  I got it to connect with my Wink Hub just fine (although I am a bit surprised that the Wink app does not seem to include lock/unlock commands). (it does, actually)
 
My Amazon Echo recognizes lots of other things on the Wink Hub, but the lock isn’t recognized.  I can’t find a specific Schlage Echo skill.  Is there a way to make this lock work with the Echo?


Starts at 20:35
From Boyd P

Before I kick-off, I love your channel and I love how passionate you are in what you do. It's very refreshing to see you take your profession and make it accessible, but also show a serious and important side (e.g. The DYN and IoT video).

Elgato seems to be featured a lot on your channel and I must admit that mostly due to your clear videos about the products they're going on to my Christmas wish list.

One thing I think would be really interesting to see, with all your smarter home products, is how your home App looks. I've not really been able to find a good screenshot or video detailing how temperature gets reported in there. Or how it looks when you use weather sensor in the Home App.

Keep up the nice video's,
and thank you for all the information!


Starts at 32:58
From Sam V

First of all thank you for your videos, I really enjoy them.

Here are my questions:

1) OnHub and Google Wifi spec shows they have Zigbee connectivity, does it mean they can control Philips hue lamps/switches/sensors without the Phillips bridge? In other words, if I buy OnHub or Google Wifi does it mean I don't need Philips bridge any more to control hue lamps?

2) Imagine I set up Philips bridge with:
a couple of lamps
and a switch/dimmer (which controls a bunch of lamps)
and a movement sensor (which controls a bunch of lamps).
Also assume I set up my bridge to turn on some of the lamps at night and turn them off at the morning automatically.
Imagine everything is working great. Now assume my home's internet connection dies and the bridge doesn't have access to internet any more. What will happen then?

Here is what I assume (hope) will happen:

I cannot modify the current setting of the lamps, switches, sensor, automatic on/off using the Phillips app (since the app is unable to connect to the bridge and modify it).
Also I am unable to use my phone to turn on/off lamps or change their colors (again since wifi is how my phone communicates with the bridge).
However, I am assuming all other functionalities should not change:
I should still be able to use the switch/dimmer and they will behave as they were.
Bridge's automatic plan should not be disturbed and it will continue turning lamps on/off based on its internal timer.
Am I right?

Thanks for your time


Starts at 38:08
From Devon

I have watched many of your videos and hope you have some time to answer a few questions for me.

Currently I have just 3 z-wave switches hooked up to my ADT Pulse system.  After researching I have found that ADT pulse can not connect to Echo, Google Home or HomeKit.  So I figured the only main benefit to kepp my ADT Pulse is that it is controlled by a central call center which alert the police, peace of mind thing, so I will keep it for that.

I was thinking of going in the route of SmartThings Hub with Google home and other devices I would purchase, but now I have learned you also need the Phillips bridge in order to connect their lights to the ST Hub, is this true?

Also I have iOS devices, so I can also do HomeKit, so I really want to know is there a reason why I would go with smartthings hub, when I could just buy homekit combatible devices?

Main things I would want, is voice control while I am home and also ability to access devices when I am not home.

Thank You