Jeff says that WINK is now charging people $5 a month to use his WINK Home Hub. Leo says that they've changed the conditions of being able to use their product, especially since it costs over $100. It's not unheard of to charge to store data, but it would be like Amazon charging $5 a month to use the Echo devices out of nowhere. And it's even more frustrating because WINK sold their device with "no fees" as a feature. Now they're charging fees. But if they don't, they'll go out of business.
Bob wants to control his whole home through a single device. Leo says the SmartThings Hub from Samsung will work, since it uses both protocols Zigby and Z-Wave. There's also the Wink Hub. He'll get some combined functionality, but he'll need apps for each of his smart devices that have expanded capabilities.
Sheldon has bought a SmartThings security system and wants to know if he can incorporate a keypad to disarm the alarm, rather than using a mobile device. The chatroom says that the ADT Security Hub will work, but Rich says that's an expensive option that requires monthly monitoring. SmartThings has other options to consider here, though.
Dave is looking to get his daughter a Polaroid type camera for Christmas. Leo says the Polaroid Pic is very popular and prints small business sized photos. The trick may be finding film, but instant cameras are coming back, so that may not be an issue. The film isn't cheap, however. Kids think they're fun. Leo says they're a great idea for teenagers.
Sean is frustrated with his home automation network that runs "Control4." Every time he adds something like a game console, he has to pay someone to come out and configure it. Why can't he just do it himself? Leo says that it may be due to the home automation hardware which requires configuring when he adds or removes something. A more open home automation solution like Smart Things would allow him to do more himself.
G. Scott has a client who wants to monitor their cabin from their home, including temperature, humidity, and if their septic tank isn't working. Leo suggests SmartThings. They can put the hub into the cabin and the hub talks wirelessly to the sensors installed in the house. The problem with home automation, though, is that there are no standards for it. It's really new. But SmartThings is very good place to start.
Greg is looking into smart sprinkler controllers. Leo says home automation is a great solution, especially for watering the lawn because of the California drought. But he's using the old school timer controllers. Still, having the ability to control his sprinklers is a great thing.