Smitho got a reaction from virtu789 in Opinions: how reliable is IRIS for security?
I have used iris for security around 3 years now. I've only had a couple of false alarms in that time and I've found it to be pretty reliable. Once I had a newly install contact sensor that I didn't secure properly fall off a door, but that was user error. The other times it has been one particular motion sensor... it happened two times around the same time of day and same time of the year. I attributed it to something with the sunlight coming through the windows and shadows. If you have too many issues with motion detectors you can also enable a setting that requires 2 sensors to be tripped to trigger the alarm.
I will say I've had a few issues with keyfobs leaving and reconnecting in the middle of the night also, but there is always a good reason. We have a designated place to hang our keys, and if we put them where they go we've never had a problem. In the event my wife leaves her keys in her pocketbook and it gets placed in certain areas it can happen. Also with my keys in my pants pocket, if they end up at the bottom of a laundry pile it sometimes happens. I have also experienced this with low batteries.
I have found a few things to do to mitigate this issue.
#1 Have a designated place for your keys where they should have clear communication with the hub. Key hangers work well. Try to avoid placing them in wire frame baskets that might interfere with the signal.
#2 Ensure batteries are not low. This might sound obvious, but I've not found the battery monitoring in iris to be reliable.
#3 Create schedules for presence based rules. My keyfob rules which lock/unlock doors or modify the state of the alarm system are not active between midnight and the time we normally get up. This way, if something did go wonky while we were sleeping the doors would not be unlocking and nothing would change with the alarm.
Smitho got a reaction from JSMills in Presence Rule that Would Improve Fob Detection
I have a scene that runs when I arrive, that includes turning on the front porch lights (even during the day). This way I know when the light comes on my door is unlocking.
The front porch light is configured to turn off automatically after a few minutes, so it doesn't really waste a lot of power. This is done via a smart switch instead of a bulb, so I don't have to worry about anyone accidentally leaving the power to the bulb turned off at the switch.
I love this idea.... so much so that I already mentioned it in this thread about a year and a half ago:
Smitho got a reaction from JSMills in Appears that iris has no presence at CES again
This is rather disappointing.
I've searched the exhibitor listings and I can't find anything for iris. Hopefully I am just missing something, but somehow I doubt it.
This is the 2nd year now they have had no presence in the biggest consumer electronics showcase in the world. All the biggest names, (and most of the smaller ones as well) in smart home technology are represented, but no Iris. I was hoping the relative silence recently was indicative of something big coming and we would learn about it at CES. Unfortunately, they just aren't looking like they will ever be a big player in the industry.
This is sad.
Smitho got a reaction from rdisom in Lowe's Iris smart home membership jumps 40% in 2017
Imagine how well it could have done if the local Lowe's stores didn't act like they wanted it to fail.
If they would keep the iris sections looking presentable, keep the shelves stocked, and have someone in the store that even knows what it is, that 40% could have been even higher.
In most stores a lot of the iris products are kept "in the cage" and you have to ask about them. The last time I went looking for an iris product there wasn't even a place on the shelf for it... they didn't have pickup cards or anything, although they had several in stock. Meanwhile the iris section is full of phone chargers, cat 5 cables, hdmi wall plates, bluetooth speakers, and random wemo and idevices smart home products which aren't even iris compatible.
What frustrates me is I have been told my local Lowes store doesn't even keep iris stuff "because the local demographic doesn't support smart home devices" however, over the years they have started to carry all the Nest, Ring, idevice, wemo, rachio, and google home stuff.... pretty much everything EXCEPT iris. I pass a lowes store every day coming home from work, yet I have to go to one 45 minutes from home to get iris devices. How is iris supposed to compete when their own store will not carry their stuff, yet push competing products?
Smitho got a reaction from Enzo in Disconcerting Performance from Monitoring Service
My understanding is that this is "by design". It's only panic alarms that get dispatched immediately. Fire and burglary call first.
I guess the logic is that panic button alarms are usually when someone is in immediate danger and has made a deliberate effort to hit a panic button... in cases like an active home invasion lives could be at stake and there is no time to waste.
It could be argued the same for burglary and/or fire, but TYPICALLY those are cases of property damage/theft. There is a better case for immediate dispatch for fire do to the possibility of loss of life, but there is probably a much higher false alarm rate for fire than panic (ie. I've never had a false panic alarm, yet I've had false alarms from smoke detectors).
This all sounds fine unless you have a toddler who has just become obsessed buttons. My 2YO hasn't hit the panic button YET, but only because I've caught it more than once. He has hit other buttons on my keypads, but I've been pretty lucky. One arm of our couch is right below the keypad in the living room, so he has a bad habit of standing on the couch and trying to press buttons.
I might be imagining this, but it seems I have also heard that carbon monoxide alarms are also an automatic dispatch without confirmation. This would also make sense, because carbon monoxide is a silent killer and can be an immediate threat to life. I also would imagine that there is a very low false alarm rate with CO alarms.
Smitho got a reaction from pavalov in Using Alexa to Run Scenes
I've been running iris scenes through alexa for a while and not had any issue with it, however you should note that they seem to only work on lighting/switch/smart plug scenes. If the scene involves the alarm, a door lock, or a number of other devices it will not work. The command is "alexa, turn on [name of scene]". I know it can be an awkward command, but it does work ("alexa, turn on goodnight").
Alternately, amazon has recently released something called routines where you can create your own trigger phrase to control a series of devices, run scenes, and do things like play a flash briefing. Last I checked iris scenes were not yet compatible with alexa routines, but iris has said they were working on fixing that soon. As a workaround I have recreated some of my scenes as a routine in alexa. I can say "alexa, I'm home" and it turns on my entertainment center (via harmony) and several lights (via iris). I also have created some simple routines containing just a single device just to make the command more intuitive. For instance, "alexa, let the dog out" will "turn on" the smart plug that powers a kennel opener, which is much more intutive than saying "alexa, turn on the kennel opener".
Smitho got a reaction from Terk in Local Processing Is Here
I had someone from iris direct message me on the 'official' forum. They checked my hub ID and confirmed that local processing was enabled at my place.
I guess if they have enough people bug them about it, maybe they will come up with a way to show local processing status within the app.
Smitho got a reaction from sparc in Something to check when adding a new camera...
So last night I added an additional camera to my system. This one is outside... (some kids have been messing with my mailbox and I'm not sure if they have taken anything).
The next time I left I set the alarm and before I could get to the end of my road I got a call from the monitoring station... I knew immediately what it was...
Apparently when you add a camera to your system it is automatically participating in your alarms, so of course the camera caught my car on the way out and triggered the alarm.
I would think that you should have to manually tell a motion detector or camera which alarms to participate in, but I guess that's not the case...
Another interesting tidbit:
If a device is participating in an alarm which is armed and you remove it, it will continue to participate in that alarm until you disarm and re-arm it.
Once I got off the phone with the monitoring center I re-armed the alarm (showing 20 participating devices), and then changed the new camera to "not participating"... When I returned to the alarms screen, it still showed 20/20 until I disarmed the alarm and re-armed, at which point it changed to 19/19.
Smitho got a reaction from scunny in Iris App Version 2.6.0
On the official iris forum there was an update on the status of offline processing yesterday.
Apparently a lot of our devices have already been updated to handle offline processing but there is still some work to do before they flip the switch and turn it on.
Smitho got a reaction from sparc in New echo to be smart home hub
Interesting... This article mentions grouping devices by room, so that commands like "turn on the lights" will know which room you are in and only turn on the lights for that room.
If that is true, I'm not sure why this new feature is not getting more attention. I get tired of having to say "turn on THE LIVING ROOM lights", "turn on THE BEDROOM lights", etc... Sometimes I forget how rooms are named (Bedroom vs Master Bedroom) If a room has its own echo, it should be able to link the devices in that room so it can make some assumptions about "which device" you are wanting to control.
Sounds like lots of cool stuff coming to the echo soon!
Smitho got a reaction from sparc in New echo to be smart home hub
I think the big difference is a routine will allow some devices to be turned OFF while others are turned ON with the same command.
Right now you can create groups, but it is either ALL ON or ALL OFF.
Also, given the example, it sounds like you will not have to use a "turn on" phrase to execute the routine.
Right now you can create a scene in iris called "good morning", but you would have to tell alexa to "turn on good morning", which is awkward.
It will be interesting to see if routines can be named anything, or if you have to stick with a list of approved routine names.
It will also be nice to be able to chain things like flash briefings or weather forecasts to routines also containing smart home commands.
Smitho got a reaction from thegillion in Nest now compatible with Iris
I have, but after buying a CT101, which didn't work reliably, and then buying a nest, which works well but isn't as flexible, I think my wife is tired of me blowing money on this stuff. It doesn't help that I've bought about 80 smart home devices in the last couple of years... I'm pretty much cut off for a while... haha
Smitho got a reaction from rdisom in There is hope for homekit support after all!
I was just reading through the iOS 11 features and noticed this:
Developers can now experiment with HomeKit without needing to apply for Made for iPhone (MFi) approval from Apple. That means developers can start creating and testing products before bringing them to market and Apple is even permitting experimentation popular custom-fit boards like the Arduino and Raspberry Pi.
HomeKit products also no longer need a hardware authentication chip, which means new and existing product manufacturers will be able to add HomeKit support to devices through a firmware update.
I believe they have finally seen the light! I feel like that crazy requirement for a hardware authentication chip is what has been holding back homekit all this time.
Lift this restriction and I believe you will start to see tons of manufacturers update their products with homekit support!
Smitho got a reaction from thegillion in Review and teardown of Bosch Motion Detector.
Mine is a beagle-Jack Russel mix. He is also a very sweet dog, but can be pretty high strung at times!
I just got a bosh sensor and it is a great product. Makes me want to replace all my existing motion detectors with these!
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Smitho got a reaction from CTMaineah in Halo Smoke detectors $99 at Home Depot
I don't know if anyone else has noticed this, but the basic halo smoke detector is about $30 cheaper at HD than Lowes.
The one that does weather alerts also is about $15 less.
Smitho got a reaction from ZBMAN in My iris grade is...
I have had somewhat of a similar experience (aside from my rate of system expansion). I'd say I'd give it a B+ or A-.
I started with security and a thermostat (I think it was called the "smart kit"), but have went crazy adding new devices. I held out for the V2 changeover also, and it was mostly a flawless transition other than some issues with my thermostat. Eventually I got tired of fooling with the t-stat and switched over to nest. Fast forward 2 years from my initial install and I have 71 paired devices including all my light switches and fan speed controls, lamps, led under cabinet lights, contact sensors for all exterior doors and windows, motion detectors in every room, cameras, door locks, smoke detectors, sirens, a leak detector, hose timer, 40G water heater, etc... I also have a contact sensor in the mailbox as well as one protecting a gun safe. I also have the 4G cellular modem with the pro monitoring package. We use echo dots from one end of the house to the other, and also have an echo dash wand with alexa which can be used as sort of a handheld voice remote (can also be done with our fire tv remote). We use the harmony hub with alexa to control our entertainment system, and I have even rigged up a remote/emergency release for our dog's kennel.
I say all that to say I am constantly adding devices, and rarely have I had any issues. In fact, the thermostat issues I had seem like they have been resolved because I gave my thermostat to my parrents to use on their iris system and they have had no problems with it.