DIY Smart Home Guy - Major Announcement

Hey all,

Just putting this out in the community because I’ve been a big fan of John and the work he’s put in over the years. We started our companies around the same time and he’s always been a super cool guy and does a very thorough review on smart home products.

He took a break over the past year or so, but he’s making a comeback and has a live show lined up tomorrow with a pretty big (and interesting) announcement.

I’m not really sure what I’m supposed to talk about or what I’m doing, but I’ll be on there live too.

So anyone who’s free at 9pm EST and wants to hop on the stream and watch me fumble, studder and sweat through an interview, here’s the link:


Awesome. Cant wait to watch!

I’ll be waiting for my shout out :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

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Maybe if we get an inovelli chant going

I watched the whole thing and the big announcement was Pete from Hubitat is taking over the DYI show. IMHO that’s too bad as I always liked John’s videos and I am a bit disconcerted that Pete makes it clear he’d rather be golfing. In fact he said that maybe the channel will morph into watching him play golf. Sure, it was was supposed to be a joke, but I believe that is where his heart is.

There were only about 50 people watching, and I asked (a couple of times) about Long Range. The Inovelli response was that we need a hub to support it. But the Zooz lady said their LR product will be out shortly (and also waiting for a hub), but at least they are putting that out there. They also said 700 and 800 series products can do long range - which was one of the reasons I got the fan + light, but Inovelli seems to have made it clear they have no plans to ever implement LR for that - which is a real shame. Though I’m glad they are working on a new one, they said it would be Zigbee (and use Zigbee, not RF, for the canopy).

So, same old, same old chicken and the egg. Hubs want LR products out there to justify implementing LR and OEMs want a hub supporting LR first.

They also talked about the upcoming Inovelli mmWave switch. They voiced the concern I have - which is the placement/coverage issue. I’ve read/seen lots of great things about the Aqara, but they all say you might need to play around with positioning to get the best coverage to avoid blind spots. I get it that to be constantly monitoring movement takes a lot of juice, so being mains powered is great. And no exposed cords is a great reason as well for a switch in-box placement, but then there seems to be zero redirectioning possible. I’m afraid that’s going to be a major issue, but we shall see.

If you want full room coverage with absolutely no chance of a blind spot, this is completely accurate. Unfortunately the position needed to do that is never the position you want the device to be in. It ends up sitting out on your counter about a foot and a half from the wall with the cord dragging behind it. And god forbid you accidentally bump it and change the angle by 5 degrees.

I don’t think the goal of the mmWave switch is to provide a product that will have 100% room coverage with no blind spots in every room it could be installed in. That would be an outlandish claim to make since there is literally nothing on the market that can do this. There will be situations where you may need to throw up a PIR sensor to cover a blind spot created by a couch or some other piece of furniture.

Where I’m sitting as I type this, I can visually see 11 switches. While all 11 may not be able to accurately detect me where I’m sitting because of angles or distance, all I need is for 1 of them to do it in order to keep my lights on.

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I agree 100% there has to be be tradeoffs. That is why I mentioned being mains powered in a box has advantages. I guess with multiple switches and writing appropriate rules you could cover an entire room(s). BTW, please do not take me wrong, I’m not attacking them, I’m just concerned, as were the panel on the YouTube broadcast. Just FYI, 100% of my switches are Inovelli Reds (20+), 5 Blacks and 5 Fan+Lights, plus I have a bulb and their light strip, so I’m definitely a fan.

This is how I’m picturing it as well. Creating presence groups that can combine the state from multiple sensors. I would likely have it in a template sensor with multiple layers where if the mmWave sensor detects presence, the room will automatically be considered occupied however if the mmWave is not detecting presence it will then check on other states such as PIR and media devices like the TV.

I take a similar approach to home presence where if my phone is on the home WiFi network and pingable I am guaranteed home, otherwise it checks the state of 5 GPS trackers and decides based on majority of home/away. 99.9% accuracy this way. I plan to treat the mmWave sensors just like I do WiFi devices here.

I’m in the same boat – I like Pete, I think he does a great job, but I’ve known John since he started his channel and I think he does very thorough reviews on everything he reviews. It’s not a goofy marketing video to get clicks, but rather he dives deep into the products positives and negatives and explains why it’s good/bad/indifferent. I think that’s what made him so unique.

Over the years John and I have kept in contact and I know he has struggled a lot with having the time to make these videos as he has a full time job that is actually quite demanding. I understand his frustration a lot as it was my intention to come out with our own videos – both for product announcements, for keeping everyone in the loop on what’s going on at Inovelli, etc… but it’s so hard to create those and keep up with the day to day that unfortunately the videos get put on the back-burner. The other problem is that if we create product tutorial videos, the hub companies update their platforms so quickly that our videos become quickly outdated, which is also discouraging for us.

So, I think John saw this as an opportunity to keep his brand alive while giving Pete a headstart in his YouTube career by giving him a decent community and if I know John as well as I think I do, I know his brand is important to him so I would think he’d monitor what’s happening.

But I will also let him know what you guys think as the videos release if they start getting off-track. Just know I share a similar sentiment as you and I’ll be watching as well.

Yeah, it really is the chicken and the egg – I can’t speak for how hard it is to implement LR on hubs, but from a product standpoint, it’s real simple. In fact, I thought it was a requirement for 800 series, but I could be mistaken.

I’ve asked the Hubitat guys a few times what the status of LR is and I haven’t gotten an answer, so I just kind of gave up.

I like Agnes over at Zooz – while we have our differences behind the scenes, I think they have a solid lineup and they are very passionate about Z-Wave. I actually have a lot of respect for her and have known her for a long time. If LR is a major selling point for you, then I would definitely give their Z-Stick a shot.

I’ve also been testing out one from Atrim that I like and we ran our Long Range tests on it during beta testing. It can be found here: Z-Wave 800 series USB Stick for Raspberry Pi, Windows, macOS – ZWaveProducts

Yeah agree – we’re working on a product (haven’t announced it bc it’s actually a very technical product and we’re having a hard time getting a quote on it) that should account for the blind-spots.

I think realistically the best way to approach this is to map out your room and measure the 120 degrees outward to a distance of about 15 feet and know that will likely be your coverage.

Inovelli, in my experience, has always been #1 by far in features with multi tap (not just double tap) the programmable LED, and myself and my family’s favorite, the favorite/config button. So if there is a way to get (virtually) 100% coverage I’d bet on them.

I just watched the 1st new DYI video. I thought it was good and he said some interesting things you don’t usually hear in this kind of video (like your friends and family don’t care to hear your tech talk).

I also thought the purple shirt was a perfect color for him, the background was nice and the comedic clip inserts worked. Only thing I would fault is that his mic is tinny and too much echo. He should ask John how his setup was. But, that’s certainly an easy fix I hope he does soon. All-in-all I’d give him an A for content, B+/A- for look and effects and a C- on the mic, so a very satisfactory 1st video. I am subscribed and gave him a thumbs up, and I’m looking forward to seeing what he brings out each week.

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The overall feel and flow of the first release was great! Pete is very comfortable in front of the cam and has good delivery.

His setup though drove me absolutely bonkers. Too many competing angles.

According to photoshop measuring me as I drew the line tool here…
The cabinets were at a downward angle at about 5 degrees, and his shoulders were at a downward angle in the opposite direction by about 7 degrees. This was the entire video. It just made it look like he was heavily leaning to one side and I actually found myself watching it with my head turned to match his body angle.

Straightened cabinets.
Maybe I’m nitpicky but I couldn’t stop myself from tilting my head and it made me aware of it.

An interesting exchange and some weird observations. I aslo found it strange that no one mentioned Universal Devices. It’s also concerning that in this conversation, the improper use of initials that, one refers to something without first defining its meaning to themself.

Normally I do not not comment on posts I read but i cant sleep and I feel there is a need. I want to write much more, but.

Congratulations, @Eric_Inovelli