It's 2020! Let's recap 2019 and earlier

Over the last several years I've tested and used a variety of hardware and protocols. For protocols I've used Insteon, Zwave, Wifi, HTTP, and other TCP/IP options. At all possible times I've kept my devices out of the cloud while maintaining full control of my home through OpenHAB. The only exception to this rule that I've allowed is control of a limited number of devices through Amazon Echo devices. The biggest advantage Echo devices have over Google devices is the actual commands are kept local based on my configuration and the cloud is only used to translate what has been said. Google devices on the other hand require cloud from one end to the other.

On the hardware side, I've covered quite a few things on the previous page. Insteon devices are sadly only made by Insteon/Smarthome (one exception is a few devices from SmartenIt). I've not seen any other manufacturer use Insteon. Insteon makes up the most significant part of my switches and plug modules and personally wouldn't have it any other way. I have a few Zwave switches and a plug in module that have worked well and I'd be willing to add other Zwave devices in the future. The few Wifi devices I use are hit or miss. I would say Belkin Wemo work but are not my preferred go to. In 2019 I picked up a couple of devices from Shelly and they've been impressive. With the latest OpenHAB (2.5) there is a dedicated binding and I've found the devices can be discovered and controlled whether they have cloud functionality enabled or disabled.

The last bits of hardware are the Yamaha receiver (very well supported), a few Squeezeboxes (still the BEST in home audio streaming solution), and Wake on Lan. What doesn't work but is discoverable is the Samsung TV. It would be nice to have some control over it but such is life.

What's to come in 2020
Zigbee! Or more appropriately Philips Hue. The Hue bridge is well supported in OpenHAB as well and their bulbs have functionality I'd like to use that isn't available in other colored bulbs. Having the ability to group and change bulb color and brightness is of importance with our young child who has eplilepsy and autism. Red is supposed to disrupt sleep the least but we need other warm low level light at night to see ourselves so the flexibility offered by Hue is the best I'm aware. And my secret agenda.... you can sync the bulbs for PC gaming.

Per Amazon Legalese I must mention my Amazon links are affiliate links so if you buy stuff I may one day earn enough to buy something for myself! Thanks!

I has the Hue!
Yeah, it finally happened. A refurb deal with four color bulbs came up and I decided not to skip it this time around. I have to say, I don't regret it. Hue integrated into OpenHAB just fine and the standalone app works great too. I actually use the Hue app most often for adjusting the lights to keep my sitemap in OpenHAB clean. It is definitely nice to set a bulb to a orange/red hue (no pun intended!) to not disturb my autistic child's sleep but still be able to safely enter the room to check on her in case of a seizure or just to get her back to sleep. This really just continues to show that no one technology is ideal for home automation but having an ecosystem like OpenHAB or Home Assistant to tie everything together for interoperability makes life much simpler.