Home Automation News

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January

The Smart Home is Too Complicated – Amazon thinks it is still too complex and I agree. However the smart home device market is still growing at a strong rate.

Arduino are introducing a new modular platform targeted as IOT- techcrunch

December

Apple,Google,Amazon and many others are teaming up to develop a new smart home standard.- The verge

Exactly what will be standardised isn’t known but it will be based around the IP protocol.

However my guess would be that it is device registration and commands so that all devices have a standard way of being discovered and a set of standard commands.

I also can’t help wondering if MQTT-SN will be adopted here.

The work is being undertaken by the Zigbee alliance and there is an FAQ here.


Sonoff have added a new basic device that supports Zigbee and not Wi-Fi.- Notenoughtech

Amazon last year also added Zigbee support in the echo plus. Which means it can be used as a home hub for Zigbee devices. –Alexa developer.

So it looks like Zigbee is establishing itself as the home automation Wireless standard.

September

If you are thinking of wiring your home you may find this video useful. It takes a different approach to most home wiring videos and shows you how to do it without having to do major renovations afterwards.

Although I probably wouldn’t adopt this for an entire house I did use this approach many years ago for connecting my basement to the rest of the house, but that was before homeplug adapters were available.

The dark side of the cloud -The dangers of relying on free cloud services to control your smart home devices

August

Good review of he smart home market...link

IKEA have created a new smart home business unit which could see a big increase in smart home offerings.. link


Sonoff have released a new switch called the Sonoff mini which is much smaller than the familiar sonoff basic and more importantly supports DIY mode which lets you use the switch without the Internet

Here is a good video that also shows you how to flash it to Tasmota firmware using OTA upgrade.

The shelly switch is an alternative to sonoff and it supports MQTT without the need for flashing.

It is slightly more expensive that sonoff but even smaller.

Here is a good video that compare the shelly switch to the old Sonoff (not the mini).