Home automation gets touted by some as the future, but itâ€™s really the now. A seemingly endless list of products are on the market and they allow the user to lock doors, turn lights on and off, open and close shades, thereâ€™s even a crockpot that can be turned on and off from anywhere.
For a while now I have been controlling some lights with Amazon Echo. Itâ€™s mostly good, but every once in a while the hub between Alexa and the bulbs needs to be reset. Iâ€™ve also been using the Mivatek Smart Plug to control another light. Therein lies the problem â€“ a lack of these things working together. Most are trying to, but the integration isnâ€™t there yet.
Echo, for instance, works with hubs from Wink, SmartThings and Insteon. That includes quite a few products, including the Nest. Certain models of the Harmony remote will also work a few home automation products. The integration is growing, but for now those who try these things will deal with a bit of a hodgepodge of controls. Echo controls some lights while an app on my tablet controls others.
SmartThings can control products from Belkin WeMo, GE, Philips, D-Link and a number of others. Wink can control Nest, GE and more. The real question is which hub to choose because they donâ€™t all work with everything, as my Wink hub canâ€™t control the Mivatek plug. In fairness, Mivatek is a new startup and likely will get picked up over time.
So are you using any home automation products yet? If you are then how has your experience been? If you havenâ€™t yet tested the waters do you plan to? Are you worried about the news regarding hacking of connected devices?
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