NOTE: This is a product pitch to Linus Tech Tips following his issues with a competitors motion switches. The back story is that we were his #2 pick for outfitting his new house and the only reason he didn’t choose us was bc we didn’t have a motion switch. Given the issues he had and the frustration with Home Automation in general, we wanted to show him HA can be fun with the right product and right community backing it.
THIS IS NOT AN ENDORSEMENT BY LTT.
Linus Tech Tips Video: I've been defeated... - "Smart" lighting in my new house - YouTube
Our Pitch: Project Linus - PRD 062722.pdf (1.8 MB)
NOTE: Original PRD was updated as the design changed.
Feel free to tag any of us with questions. Myself (Eric H) & Darwyn are the go-to’s for overall project management and timeline questions, Eric M is the go-to for any firmware related questions and I’m (Eric H) the go-to for anything else. Either way, we’re all here to help!
- Project Manager (Inovelli): @Eric_Inovelli
- Project Manager (Manufacturer): @Darwyn_Inovelli
- Innovation Lead: @Eric_Inovelli
- Technical Lead: @EricM_Inovelli
As per our tradition of working with you amazing people, here’s what this thread allows us to do as a community.
- Allows us to keep everyone updated on the project status (either good or bad)
- Allows you to participate and help us develop amazing products together
- Enjoy each other’s company and have fun talking home automation
How this initial post will be laid out is in five sections:
- Project Overview
- Initial Hardware & Software Requirements (edited to remain up-to-date)
- Timeline (edited to remain up-to-date)
- Pinned Ideas & Shout-outs (edited to remain up-to-date)
- Weekly Recap
- DATES & FUNCTIONS ARE NOT SET IN STONE: Just a reminder that all dates and functions are sometimes fluid. We have to make choices based on feasibility, opportunity costs, and overall timeline. I will be as transparent as possible on these decisions, but just a heads up, they may not always be exciting.
- NO IDEA IS A BAD IDEA: Ok, some are, but honestly throw out anything that you can think of. If we use your idea, we’ll credit you and send you a free device, so take that shot!
- VERSION 1 VS VERSION 2: Some ideas may be fantastic, but may not make the cut for the first version of the product. Once the product is locked in from a function standpoint, we’ll keep a tally of V2 ideas and then once the product is produced, we’ll move the ideas over to a suggestions/wishlist section.
Ok, let’s get this party started!
The purpose of this project is to expand upon our Blue Series (this will also reach our Red Series line) as well as show Linus and team what the power of a community can do when it comes to creating products and automating our houses.
In addition, there has been a huge market for motion switches and a large B2B client reached out to us for a WiFi/BT version that we are in the process of securing the contract.
We’re excited to finally get some publicity and recognition for our innovative products and I’m personally excited to work on another project with the community as you all are the secret weapon.
We chose the name Linus bc I felt that it could be a rallying cry around what Home Automation can do given the right platform and products. We were excited to be considered on his channel and, while ultimately he went with a competitor, the reasoning is because he wanted a motion switch which we currently didn’t have. Upon hearing some of the challenges he had, frustration with Home Automation in general, and many of our customers reaching out to let us know we should make something for him, we decided to see if we could fast track this project.
So, we’d like to name this project after him and his channel as a way to show him and his audience what the Inovelli community can do and show that it can be night and day in terms of what he experienced with another product.
My goal is to come up with a truly inspiring motion switch with you guys that, regardless of which route he and his team choose, will have an impact across North America as our other switches have.
Linus - Hardware Requirements
We will be using our current dimmer switch hardware with a few modifications. If you’re really interested in seeing what’s under the tent and how we kick off these projects, here’s the internal PRD (Project Request Document) that we presented (Note: The below is a revised PRD as the design has changed).
Project Linus - PRD 062722.pdf (1.8 MB)
NOTE: Subject to change as R&D has not kicked off
- Responsive Paddle: rests in a neutral state (tap up = on // tap down = off & hold up = dim up // hold down = dim down)
Config / Favorite Button: button should be used for configuration of the switch as well as scene control.
- Should be able to be held (for config)
- Should be able to be tapped (for scene control)
RGB LED Bar: should measure the % of how much the switch is dimmed
- LED’s should be RGB (artificial white included)
- LED’s should also be able to be dimmed
- Colors: dimmer switch will be offered in white (matching Lutron Claro wallplates), but the paddle should be able to be replaced to change colors (almond, brown, red, black, grey, etc)
- Slim Design: depth of switch should be as slim as possible so that it can fit into metal boxes.
Motion Sensor (and
potentiallyLux) – motion detection eithervia PIR ormmWave with built in lux (if possible and based on costs)
- Air Gap: UL requirement
- No heat-sink tabs: remove heat sink tabs for easier installation (note: may have to sacrifice max wattage)
Should follow 2-1 Switch tooling and capabilities if possible.
- ZigBee 3.0: use the latest ZigBee chipset (should be the same one that will be used for CHIP and compatible with Philips Hue + Amazon Echo Plus)
3-Way / 4-Way Ready: should work in multiple different settings in a 3 & 4 Way setting
- Should work with an auxiliary switch (like GE’s does)
- Should work with an existing dumb switch
- Should work with another smart switch (if wired to another smart switch, it should be able to detect this)
- Power Monitoring: switch should measure the power consumption
- ZigBee Distance Estimator: should be able to estimate the signal strength of the ZigBee signal and notify via the LED bar
Instant On: when tapped 1x (and scenes aren’t used), switch should turn the bulb on instantly (no delay)
- Configurable delay in 100ms increments (see tech doc)
- CFL & LED Compatibility: minimum buzz and flickering
- 600W: increase the wattage to 600 like GE’s
Neutral & Non-Neutral Compatibility: switch should be able to work with a neutral wire or without a neutral wire
- Should auto-detect which setting it’s in (neutral/non-neutral, aux/dumb) and if it can’t, then there should be a manual override.
Auto-Detect Line/Load (and if possible other terminals)
- No matter how customer wires it, the switch should be able to detect what’s wired/where.
- Auto-Detect Neutral/Non-Neutral: Switch should detect whether or not it’s connected to a neutral wire or not
- PIR or mmWave: Prefer mmWave if possible
- Lux Sensor: Detect light brightness
Linus - Software Requirements
Will follow the 2-1 Switch firmware, but adds in motion/lux parameters
- On/Off or Dimmer: Switch should be able to be either an on/off or dimmer depending on what the user sets it as
- ZigBee Scene Control: Multi-taps to activate various scenes
RGBW Bar Config: Bar should be able to change colors and dimmed to the customer’s favorite level
- LED bar will also be fully addressable (thanks for the call out @suzakutk!)
- Animations that mimic our 2-1 & Fan + the addition of weather animations
- Auto Timer: Switch should have a timer that shuts the switch off after a certain amount of time
Easy Config: Switch should be able to be configured via the config / favorite button.
- There should be infinite customization via parameters in the firmware, but also set customizations for HUB’s that do not allow parameter changes (ie: Wink)
- Internal Relay Disable: Internal relay should be able to be disabled locally and via ZigBee
- Minimum dim level / Maximum dim level
- Ramp rate configuration: Ability to change how fast/slow light turns on
- Ramp rate & instant on/off separated
- Default Dim Level: Ability to set the default dim level
- OTA Ready: Ability to update firmware via OTA
- Zigbee Bindings (Individual & Group)
- Smart Bulb Mode
- PIR or mmWave: Zone settings and calibration
- Lux calibration: Ability to adjust lux reading if something is off
NOTE: This project is also not officially kicked off – a lot hinges on Linus promoting it as well as the B2B customer order. We also are very cognizant of the other projects that are being worked on and/or stalled and are working on timelines for everything.
Ah, everyone’s favorite part. When is this flippin thing going to be released? Great question – here’s the high-level of what happens leading up to the first release of the timeline:
- We present a PRD (Project Request Document) that has all of the above info in it (see above section for the pdf)
- R&D (manufacturer) analyzes the PRD and we go back and forth until we can align on 90% of the product
- Initial Timeline is released and remaining 10% of product features are added/cut along the way
Again, just want to throw this out there – I don’t have a crystal ball so I can’t predict things that come up along the way. Trust me when I say we’re trying our best to get things launched on time.
- Present PRD: Completed
- R&D Analyzation: In-Progress
- Initial Timeline Released: Not Started
The initial timeline will be shown below once released and will be updated bi-weekly (if needed).
Pinned Ideas & Shout-Outs
Here are the ideas from the community. We sincerely appreciate them, we love them, and we couldn’t create the products we do without them. So, thank you for your input and let’s continue to innovate together and change the home automation category for the better (NOTE: if an idea is crossed out, it’s not because it wasn’t valid, nor was it something we didn’t consider – we’ve discussed it internally or with the manufacturer and unfortunately it was not feasible).
- @suzakutk’s idea of moving the sensor to the top and also exploring a sensor/config button combo
- @suzakutk: It would be neat if this could become local configuration parameters (adaptive_bightness=on/off, adaptive_brightness_weight=numerical value that would be multiplied with the current lux value to determine brightness percentage when turning on the switch) - idea here: Zigbee / Matter Motion Switch | Project Linus (Blue Series) - #17 by suzakutk
- @JimK: It would be nice if you could trigger the light bar on the switch to activate based on motion to assist a user with finding the light switch at night.
- @Eric_Inovelli: Ability to customize sensitivity based on time of day (or just have some sort of control over sensitivity)
Every other Thursday morning, we have a meeting with our manufacturer to go over the various projects (status, issues, timeline, etc) and below I’ll provide a recap as well as edit the sections above so we can all keep track. If you have any specific questions you’d like me to ask, feel free to tag me and let me know so I can ask them as well. The bi-weekly cadence for updates will be Thursday mornings (or afternoons depending on when we have the meeting).
December 6, 2022: We should be receiving some modified beta units next week that have a couple different versions of mmWave in it. We’ll quickly test those to see which version works better and then provide the feedback to move forward with the final design beta units, hopefully by the end of the year. Realistically, it will likely be the first couple weeks of January as the firmware team is working on our Z-Wave 2-1 switch. More to come!