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OHTRTA last won the day on October 16 2015

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  1. Only for those who want to learn or play......... seems like a nice kit....... https://www.sparkfun.com/news/2124

    V1 Range Extender Retail Cost?

    Thanks for the assist Sunny......... had coffee......... just a brain fart :-) Actually cool to get called out :-) keeps everyone on the straight and narrow. Glad he was able to confirm the zigbee only on the ST smartplug......... strange how they missed the boat on that one........ the Iris Smart Plug is easily the best choice between the two

    V1 Range Extender Retail Cost?

    Ok........ I am bad....... and you are correct........ I was mixing up the RE and smartplug........... my bad........... Thanks for confirming the ST smartplugs do not extend z-wave. This makes the Centralite/Iris smart plugs a better buy all around.......... again sorry for my confusing the smart plug with the Alertme RE...........

    V1 Range Extender Retail Cost?

    You are correct it can be confusing as for AlertMe hub there were two version of the Iris range extenders. They both did not work well or actually made things worst. These did not, did not repeat zigbee signals, only Zwave. The Centralite Hub (often called V2) only works or works best with the Centralite Iris RE (I guess you could call it V3 of the Iris RE??) Just make sure the range extender you are using is the Centralite version. It looks completely different than the AlertMe RE. NOTE: Lets make this even more confusing!!!! It has been stated the Centralite version of the Iris RE does repeat both Zigbee and Zwave (that means two complete different radios) I am told Smartthings actually has the same looking Centralite RE only for ST. And it does not repeat Zigbee......... someone check me out on this. So again....... make sure you getting the Centralite Iris RE......... in order to have Zigbee and Zwave repeating......... and AlertMe RE do not repeat Zigbee

    Failed Migration and Can't Pair Devices

    Make sure on the devices you are having issues with the hub is within 10 feet or so of the hub when repairing. Floors actually block signals better than walls. The same case can be made with trying to remove devices. Devices need to be close by for removing and/or repairing..............

    NO repeater functions

    It is my belief you are correct it is a range and/or zwave network issue issue. Unless things have change the lock manufactures have the zwave electronics including the zwave antenna on the "outside" part of the locks. This mean to start right off the zwave signals have to go through/penetrate a structure issue. Now if your door is metal the issue is greatly magnified. If the lock was working with V1 it could be a network issue. If they still haven't given you the option to manually start the zwave network healing process then I would call customer support and see if any level of support can manually start the process. It actually can take several attempts. Another option could be to completely factory reset the lock. Start completely over. Fresh batteries and wipe it back to factory settings. I am sure somewhere here on the form there are instructions how to perform a factory reset. Or maybe customer support can help you or even the lock manufacturer. After the factory reset repair the lock to the hub. NOTE: make sure the hub and lock are within about 10 feet or less when pairing. Or......... another option and maybe the easiest is to buy the newest version of the range extender (we are actually on version three of the Iris range extender. Make sure it is the new Centralite version of the RE).......... place it half way between the lock and the hub. All this Z-wave issue would be so easy to fix in seconds if some level of support had Z-wave topology. If you call support see if any level of support has zwave topology. This is really a network issue. Note: Very common to zwave networks.......... not an Iris issue per say.......... rather a zwave protocol issue.

    V1 Range Extender Retail Cost?

    The original Iris "repeater" only repeats the Z-wave signals. It does NOT repeat/extend Zigbee. This is because it only has a Zwave radio. Although Z-wave because it is on 900 Mhz (vs the 2.4 ghz of zigbee) it by all rights should cover a longer distance and be able to penetrate walls/floors better that zigbee. But in actual use this is very often not the case. Local EMI environment usually is cause of this degraded performance. V1 repeaters actually in most cases caused more issues than "fixed". You might even have better luck and see an improvement by removing the V1 extender. NOTE: It might take awhile as you properly mentioned the V1 does have battery back up and it will take maybe 4 or 5 hours for the battery to die. After the V1 repeater is completely gone if your Zwave devices are not staying connected first try the short 2 second reset on your hub. Do not go longer than that as it might hard reset completely back to factory settings and wipe out all your devices and you will have to start repairing devices. If you are still having issues with your zwave devices call customer support. As I do not believe Iris has given you the option of V1 of being to optimize the Zwave network manually. What this does is manually starts a network "healing" process and the Z-wave network figures out its best topology for maintaining connections. The problem is and note.... NOTE: the not so great healing process of Z-wave is NOT an Iris issue. Rather is a Z-wave protocol issue. The "self healing" process in Zigee is far better than Zwave. It can actually take running manually several times an hour of so apart before the Z-wave really settles in. An easier process and is what I recommend is to just purchase a V2 range extender and place it about half between the hub and the devices that having issues staying connected.


    There are pluses and minus to auto updates. It would be nice if it was an option. Especially for those who have remote locations........... oh well, progress marches forward.............


    Mmmmmmmm......... is it an option to have automatic updates? I use check very early to see before I reported to work to see if there was an update (90% of the time tech support had no idea when the hub up dates were happening) ......... always wanted to know what kind of day I was going to have as with most updates there were plenty of hiccups by in the Alertme days........... good luck everyone!
  10. OHTRTA

    Uggh V2 is Failing Worse and Worse

    ....... btw........ check to see if any level of support has zwave topology. This would tell you the problem in under a second if it is a range issue. Actually for a day and a half under Alertme the techs had topolopy........... I was in heaven and fixed some major issues with customers that had been waiting for over a year.......... then they took it away........ no reason why, but they did......... Check to see if they have zwave topology..............
  11. OHTRTA

    Uggh V2 is Failing Worse and Worse

    You are probably correct thinking it is a range issue. Has the Iris version added the option of optimizing the Z-Wave network? It has been my experience the Z-wave network does not "self-heal" any where near as well as the Zigbee. (btw the lock is zwave if you didn't know). If they haven't haven't put this back in call customer support to see it they can still activate the optimizing of the Z-wave network. If the lock doesn't come back after the first attempt (actually it can take several attempts before zwave network can fix itself)......... then remove and repair the lock. I understand it has become a pain to pair zwave devices that are more than 10 ff away from the hub but make sure the lock and hub are within 10 feet of each other. NOTE: when a z-wave device is first paired it can not and will not use a repeater to establish the initial link. After repairing the lock and it does NOT stay online try the zwave optimization one more time. It is possible the lock is "locked" into trying to link all the way to the hub directly and not using the range extenders (these are the new range extenders and not the ones, right?) The lock needs to be "retrained" to take advantage of the repeaters. I know, I know, I know this sounds stupid and dumb but welcome the work of IOT and zwave. Note is not an Iris issue rather persay it is a zwave issue.............
  12. OHTRTA

    My two cents ......... :-)

    Although some might think sneaky...... restarting the review count on Lowes Iris hub page.......... actually for those who want the system to succeed it is the only possible smart move. They will probably wait unit after the June cutoff/switch, maybe even wait until the fall for a hard relaunch. They still have a wave to ride of folks switching over. They should have the vast majority of kinks worked out and Iris can move on to bigger and better things. Those of us old enough can remember the change to Intel chips that Apple/Mac had to make. It was a rough year or so.......... again the IOT Market as a whole worries me most. Until someone like Google or Apple is really committed all this is is a step above X10
  13. OHTRTA

    My two cents ......... :-)

    I am just a geek........ an old fart geek :-) For personal reasons I had to stay in ABQ and couldn't move to find a better job so I ended up at the call center in ABQ. First in sales where I saw Lowes basically doing to Iris what it did to a riding lawnmower that was to double as a emergency generator. Great idea!!! But they couldn't work out the details that were making the chassis hot. lol so they just dropped that POS. Iris is different as it really does open doors to all areas of possibilities of additional income. I wasn't in the first Iris group as Lowes didn't even try to hire from existing personal but I weaseled my way into the second group. For a month or two I drank the kool-aid but it didn't take long to start questioning the folks in England. The basic part of the system was firm. Good idea. The hardware except for the Iris range extender (which never really worked) was pretty solid, the real issue was the backend. Now it is easy to bash Alertme too, but they at the time really were years ahead of others. What did I switch to??......... oh my........ lol ........... being the geek that I am I have ran almost everything at the time. There are few that I haven't tried. All the systems which their major selling point is "plug and play" really suck. Actually version 1 of Iris came the closest IMHO....... Right the best P&P possibilities I feel are Smartthings, Iris and Simplethings (which personally Simple Things isn't for me) Although the basics of home automation/security are kind of, almost there. For several systems for any serious person the Home IOT Market is basically still in a hobbyist / beta phase. Smartthings would be my choice if I was still wanting to invest this hobbyist time investment. But with Samsung at the helm it would not surprised ST could be sold off at some point. Actually well over two years ago I was floating the idea through management that Lowes should have purchased ST. It was obvious to me at that time they were very similar and they share the same hub manufacturer at this point. It would not surprise me at some point this actually happens. Just pure speculation on my part. It is with some sadness because the IOT market as a whole has failed, but the two best options for P&P and only part time hobbyist are Iris or ST. For the full time hobbyist the amount of options is almost endless.
  14. OHTRTA

    My two cents ......... :-)

    Oh my....... no....... Lowes will never leave the IOT sector. It fits into their model of servicing the Home Improvement market. Yes some major mis-cues have been made by Lowes, but I still feel it is the IOT industry as a whole that dropped the ball. What I do see is Lowes is in a very unhappy marriage. Divorce may happen at some point but right it is making sense to hang on and give it at least one more good push. Getting it up and running and sell a portion off but maintaining control. One of the largest profit centers for ALL major box stores in any market is their "extended" warranties and "service" contracts. Lowes is forward thinking enough to realize at some point everything in home will be talking and there is a huge profit center hook there. The "mistake" that Lowes and ALL of us did was believe the hype that this was just around the corner. Like a lot of things the technology is there, just no one to lead the way. So I wouldn't expect Lowes to every drop out completely..............
  15. With the end of life of version 1 hub and actually the EOL for AlertMe (which has given rebirth to Centra Connected Home w/Hive (https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/05782908 ) it could be interesting to see how much if any a “phoneix” will come from the ashes of AlertMe. I went to CES in 2015 hoping to find out more about the changes for Iris as Lowe’s was sharing very little with Iris support techs. In January 2015 the IOT market was hot, very hot, there was much promise of huge tidal wave of new products and features. The promise of Google and Apple jumping in the market driving sales and bring some conformity to the mass of different protocols. CES 2015 was the first time the IOT market had it’s own “space”/area on the CES floor. But even after the first few hours it was obvious this was not going to be the year of IOT. While Smartthings had their version 2 of their hub on display it was under glass. Not a good sign if you are familiar with process of bringing products to market. I went incognito to the Iris “Home” and although a bit late in the day couldn't find a single person at any management level. The personnel “manning the booth” were either from a third party supplier of convention personal or poorly training Lowe’s store personal from the local area of Las Vegas. No new hub and no one even had a clue if there was going to be one coming. Although the Iris “home” was impressive. And the rest of the IOT section at CES 2015 the manufactures were not ready for prime time…….. Not even close…………. CES is always the first part of January. A week or two after CES there was a visit from AlertMe (England) and from the new head of the Iris department. (After the podcast leak? Hand writing on the wall?) There was talk of a new hub a new backend maybe called Omnia. This was going to huge. A huge improvement over the current version. This fell in line with what leaked in a podcast (November 2014?) that a new hub that was to include Bluetooth by Lowes/Iris management. Between the CES show, AlertMe’s visit and a change at the top of Iris food chain………. Things just didn’t seem right. Then came the announcement of British Gas going from a minor investment partner to buying AlertMe out right in February 2015. Going into March there was less and less viable “support” from England. While Lowes/Alertme excelled at keeping those of us with some tech background in the dark, there was at least what seemed an attempt to address issues. There were some other housekeeping red flags but by the end of the second week of March 2016 it was obvious to me things have gone off the rails. By the end of March Lowes/Iris and myself went our separate ways. By June things started to clear up. A FCC filing I found showed the new Iris hub was being made by Centeralite (the same folks making the Smartthings hub seen in January (which also had its own FCC filings)) It was obvious Lowes/Iris didn’t want this known as they later had the FCC pull the filling until November/December 2016 but the cat was already out of the bag. I am sure for what they thought was good reasoning Lowes/Iris were not forthcoming on who/what was going to be the backend of the new system. We all saw the filings for new jobs in the Iris family starting in February 2015. I am sure going into the later summer months we will see a new push for Iris. Lowes has reset all the reviews on Iris hub page (there were at one time over 150 reviews and now there is less than 30). Lowes/Iris has to turn the tide to make it a viable business. I am just curious to see if this rebirth from AlertMe to Centra Connected Home will signal the return of some of the most experienced people in IOT The IOT market still has a bright future. But I feel it is the IOT market itself to blame as no one really picked up the mantle to become the industry leader. Too many standards and too many security issues have stalled the IOT industry. No one has broken out as a true industry leader. Apple, Google and others have sat on the sidelines yet another year to figure out how best to address the IOT market. Kudos to Lowes/Iris for attempting to hang in there. Lowes is making a huge investment and it isn’t a “tech” company. While I have done my share of bashing, Lowes in not a tech company :-) And the IOT industry set everyone’s expectations too high too soon. I really do blame the industry as whole and not the manufacturers. Yes, yes, yes……. Manufacturers share in the blame but the industry as whole did nothing but over promise and under deliver. In my view the IOT industry as a whole needs a bit of phoenix miracle not just Lowes/Iris, Smarthings, Google and Apple and a reset of our expectations. Time to open our eyes see where we are really going in the IOT market………...