Jump to content

Insteon Releases Apple Watch App!


Recommended Posts

Insteon has now released their Apple Watch app. Looks very well done, but the 800 pound gorilla in the room is why no mention of Siri integration? You'll be able to control all of your devices and it's never been easir to control scenes. Now you can change the mood of your entire home with just a simple tap from your wrist. They've also done a great job of adding Wi-Fi camera integration. Does this mean that the Hub Pro is not far behind? You can learn more about the Apple Watch app from here:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As stated in another related thread Siri support will be provided in the HUB Pro because it's based on the Apple Home Kit standard / API etc.


The recent crop of Insteon Apps are indeed slick and sexy. After that fades away the lack of substance and control is obvious to those wanting more control.


I know a few people have stated these devices are geared toward those looking for a basic controller etc.


But come on now . . .


When you're the maker, designer, and retailer for the product don't you want just one epic product that can show case your technology to it full potential?


Stop catering to the inept, dumb, lazy, cheap already. History has proven when you offer a product that continues to provide solid value year after year like the ISY Series Controller.


People will stick around and will invest more money into your company.


People have shown they will pay for a more expensive product if they see value and a return on their investment.


Smartlabs has to get out of the mentality of producing controllers for the bottom feeders.


By all means offer the lesser HUB II as a teaser to get you to upgrade that's fine! But don't push out another product which offers very little in terms of real features and access!



Ideals are peaceful - History is violent

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Apple generally has control over their own system. I think even if Insteon wanted to add more to homekit, apple wouldn't let them since it gives the user more control which goes against how apple historically handles devices. If Apple allowed homekit users the same benefit of the ISY, what would users need them for? Hopefully I am wrong because I would love to see the growth that Insteon could have with an ISY/homekit integration. I am doubtful simply because I don't see apple allowing Insteon to go that far though.


In regards to the bottom feeders and those who do more, I agree with you but disagree with you. There are more people out there looking for simplicity than there are for what the ISY offers (they don't know what they are missing). Whether it's the price, ignorance, or being afraid of learning they don't want to jump into that world. Should those people grow into needing/wanting more then it's a win/win situation. People are introduced into automation at a low cost, Insteon makes money, and UDI has more potential customers for future growth themselves. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is a "starting over" aspect to this new world of HA as well. Look back at smartphones 8 years ago. There were smartphones prior to the first iphone in 2007 with lots of great capabilities. However those phones were, in general, hard to use and appealed to techy types.  The initial iphone did not deliver all of the deep features of its competitors. Over the years, apple slowly added the features in and now you see a lot of capabilities grown matched to a much more massive market. 


The same thing will happen with HA. There is a community here that's been in the trenches doing HA at depth for a while. Its not difficult to use, but arguably its not for everyone. With homekit, we're now seeing a new group getting a taste of HA, just like the first iphone users get a taste of smartphone capabilities. This is not picking on apple, this same effect will exist for amazon, google and other big players solutions. They are focused elsewhere.


It will take a while for mass market products like the homekit and insteon hub to catch up with deeper capabilities that  we already have. But somehow it will.


The questions for now are:

  1. how much deep capability will be "in there" in the first homekit and like cloud products? Current evidence suggests "not much".
  2. More important to me, how much will the big new players open the door to Translation Gateways, to allow us to connect the new world with the existing one we know and love?

Question 2 is more related, I think, to AngelARs original post. There is some value in voice commands spoken to a watch. It is cool. It's the Dick Tracy 2 way wrist TV come to life.


I would love a hybrid solution, through a Translation Gateway, that gives me some of the gee wiz, and all of the rich depth of of control I have with the ISY today. 


Like the smartphone evolution, Its going to take a little time for it all to come together. We'll have to find patience for it to happen.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

how much will the big new players open the door to Translation Gateways, to allow us to connect the new world with the existing one we know and love?


Apple’s restrictions on bridged accessories are security-related. For example; any accessory regardless of how it connects to HomeKit cannot be bridged if it allows physical access to a home, such as a door lock because they represent a weak spot in smart home networks. There will be other ways to connect to HomeKit via a bridge. Raspberry Pi's are good for this.HomeControl is one example; shown here;




More details on how HomeKit will work can be found here;




Simplicity and security is what HomeKit is all about. Another benefit of HomeKit for manufactures is that they won't have to use their own resources and time to develop an app to control their hardware. It will all work flawlessly with Apples' Home app for iOS coming soon. So one app will control everything in your home automation kit, regardless of manufacture. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you search the forum, there a number of more recent homekit articles and discussions, some started by me. I've read, I've studied, and I have the same concerns right now that I've had all along. They remain unresolved.  


In the non-Translation Gateway world, I would need 2 PLMs on my powerline to support Homekit.  PLMs are serial, or network.. but not both:

  • My current serial PLM/Hub to connect to the ISY's serial port so it can control devices, and
  • A new Network Homekit enabled Hub so my iphone can control devices

To get the homekit capability on my existing system , without a translation I need to :

  • Buy, install and configure an Homekit enabled Hub. (when it comes out) 
  • Configure the devices I want to control via siri/homekit in the second Hub
  • Manage 2 primary controller PLMs on the same powerline. Been there before. It can be a lot of work and a slippery slope
  • Buy and set up an apple TV that I have no other use for
  • Count on others to develop Rpi modules or learn python myself (or something). 

A lot of words came to mind as I wrote the above list; simplicity is not one them. ios continues to not play well with others, you have flip your world over for it. Or not. Homekit means considerable technical debt to me.


As already stated, Homekit is geared to a brand new world of HA users. I acknowledge that and that's great for them. And that's not me. My family has a mix of phone OS's, it changes and that's always been true.  I'm not locking us in for so little. A limited, inflexible, overly simplified, locked in solution doesn't work for me. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At the end of the day Apple forces all existing and new comers to be on their *A Game*. As stated in other threads lots of this will be good for new people entering the HA Space. While for those with existing technology it provides more options to choose from.


Its a guarantee there will be a steady release of utter crap products along with a few good ones. I am interested to see how this all evolves in the next five years.


I expect to see lots of good things from Smartlabs with respect to new gear etc. It will be very interesting to see how other protocols such as Z-Wave, Zigbee, UPB, etc all take advantage of this HA adoption which appears to be everywhere you look. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Agreed Teken.


I took a good look at the selfcoded web link, and that goes to another extreme. Its not a facility or a Translation Gateway, its uniquely created linux based code for a handful of devices. This is the opposite of what I would be looking for. That gives me two very bad extremes to pick from to implement Homekit:

  1. Go the 2 Hub/PLM route as described above, or
  2. Become a technical linux developer and hand craft code for each device interaction between homekit and the ISY.

I'll be doing neither of those. (Not sure how the software architecture for selfcoded is considered different than a bridged accessory, but that's an academic question)


The answer In the middle? The Translation Gateway.  In that idealized world, I log into homekit through it and talk to my devices defined there. I talk to ISY devices on the local side via well documented REST calls.  The PI would be perfect to run this kind of facility. There would be some value to Homekit if that were possible.


But if Translation Gateways are not allowed, then Homekit is too complicated and difficult for me to consider at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On a more positive note, here is a non-Smarthome, non-Homekit solution for the iwatch,iphone, ipad and the ISY:


Go straight from the iwatch to the the ISY from this developers new app.  He's has a decent start, and his app handles the iwatch.


This approach would work well and its very simple to get to work. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On a more positive note, here is a non-Smarthome, non-Homekit solution for the iwatch,iphone, ipad and the ISY:


Go straight from the iwatch to the the ISY from this developers new app.  He's has a decent start, and his app handles the iwatch.


This approach would work well and its very simple to get to work. 


Sadly, I am struggling to get this App to even operate so will wait and see what the Dev has to say about this.


BACK ON TOPIC: I do have to affirm once again the Apple Watch Insteon App was very nice to see in the video. Very slick and in my view for a wrist worn operator this is the ticket most of us have been waiting for.


Exciting times are ahead for us all in the home automation space . . .   

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Who's Online (See full list)

  • Forum Statistics

    • Total Topics
    • Total Posts
  • Create New...