Author Topic: MIOS Acquisition  (Read 17667 times)

Offline melih

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #30 on: August 19, 2018, 10:16:17 am »

Offline kigmatzomat

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #31 on: August 19, 2018, 02:32:36 pm »
But the question is : when ?
....
So, when is "soon" ? One week ? Month ? Year ?

I would be surprised if anything more than minor bug fixes came out in the next 3 months.

Let's assume they did add a major feature or rewrite some key component. Ignoring Dev time, you would expect 2-3 weeks of user beta, another week for addressing any minor tweaks, and a week of internal "dog fooding" the final release. That's 4-5 weeks of uat/qa.

Before that they need to actually add code fixes. Assume a month of Dev to tackle low hanging fruit.

But that is after they get the new staff up to speed. It sounds like they have zwave and Linux devs available. How many luup devs can they find? How long does it take to learn the vera cloud services? Device management? The firmware build system?

Does the dev team need to migrate to a new release system? Implement a bug tracker? Version control? Change their project management paradigm?

So I don't expect immediate miracles. Maybe by Christmas the biggest bugs will be mitigated and next year they can tackle features. Or refactoring the core engine to enable features.

Offline Sender

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #32 on: August 19, 2018, 03:08:39 pm »

Today I do not know the answer. I am at the "collection" phase of all the requirements. We doubled the resources by joining the companies. We will make sure Product Management will let you know dates that they know they can deliver. Just bear with me a while please.

Melih, how many people will be working on product development in total and what are their skills with regards to zwave? I have vera running for 90% for zwave. And there is the lack of GOOD device support for all kinds of major vendors. When will those devices be supported good?
In case you ask what devices, please read the forum and around the last 200 posts and you will have a hand full.

Thanks.
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Offline melih

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #33 on: August 19, 2018, 04:01:34 pm »

Today I do not know the answer. I am at the "collection" phase of all the requirements. We doubled the resources by joining the companies. We will make sure Product Management will let you know dates that they know they can deliver. Just bear with me a while please.

Melih, how many people will be working on product development in total and what are their skills with regards to zwave? I have vera running for 90% for zwave. And there is the lack of GOOD device support for all kinds of major vendors. When will those devices be supported good?
In case you ask what devices, please read the forum and around the last 200 posts and you will have a hand full.

Thanks.

We are adding around 70 top notch developers on top of what Mios/Vera has, which will make this one of the biggest home automation development teams in the world. Of course we are also going to be employing a lot more people.. This team helped the zwave people find their own bugs in the zwave protocol! I say they are pretty darn good! We work very closely with the zwave people....

Offline intveltr

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #34 on: August 19, 2018, 04:37:43 pm »
Interesting developments!

Melih, you wrote:
Quote
1)Product must work
2)Product must be cost effective
3)Product must address all of user's home automation needs
4)Product must be available to developers so that they can develop their own versions of home automation products.
Vera seems to be stuck at 1

Actually Vera already does a reasonable job at 2 and 4, that is probably why many of us are here in the first place.  It's an affordable platform, and if you want to interface with something (non z-wave), chances are a plugin already exists.  If not, writing one is a feasible undertaking.

Since point 1 is a given, lets address point 3.  Advanced users (those who can write their own plugin) can probably make the platform do what they need it to do, but a novice (non programmer) will struggle with even the most basic of scenes.  And when it comes to going beyond dumb remote control, scenes are where it's at.  Look at Workflows in AltUI: not perfect but capable of some very complex stuff with no programming required.  Or the PLEG plugin for Vera that is somewhat limited interface wise, it being a plugin and all, but nevertheless very capable.  Other platforms offer scenes with stages and complex conditions all in a graphical builder interface.  In comparison, Vera's scenes are little more capable than a record/playback setup.   Oh, and once one starts using scenes to do some real automation, the realisation that scene states absolutely need to survive a reboot quickly sets in (currently they don't).

My advice: in addition to listening to other Vera users, become one, or as they say in (horrible) corporate-speak "eat your own dog food".  Install one and automate everything in your own home and perhaps the office too.  And I do mean everything.  Lights, heating, security, irrigation, home entertainment.  Interface with everything you can get your hands on.  Cause that's what a lot of us do, and it's where those questions are coming from: why isn't this supported, or the default, or possible, or made easier?
HomeWave is available in the App Store!  Turn your iPhone/iPad into an easy-to-use remote control for Vera.

Offline melih

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #35 on: August 19, 2018, 04:49:14 pm »
Interesting developments!

Melih, you wrote:
Quote
1)Product must work
2)Product must be cost effective
3)Product must address all of user's home automation needs
4)Product must be available to developers so that they can develop their own versions of home automation products.
Vera seems to be stuck at 1

Actually Vera already does a reasonable job at 2 and 4, that is probably why many of us are here in the first place.  It's an affordable platform, and if you want to interface with something (non z-wave), chances are a plugin already exists.  If not, writing one is a feasible undertaking.

Since point 1 is a given, lets address point 3.  Advanced users (those who can write their own plugin) can probably make the platform do what they need it to do, but a novice (non programmer) will struggle with even the most basic of scenes.  And when it comes to going beyond dumb remote control, scenes are where it's at.  Look at Workflows in AltUI: not perfect but capable of some very complex stuff with no programming required.  Or the PLEG plugin for Vera that is somewhat limited interface wise, it being a plugin and all, but nevertheless very capable.  Other platforms offer scenes with stages and complex conditions all in a graphical builder interface.  In comparison, Vera's scenes are little more capable than a record/playback setup.   Oh, and once one starts using scenes to do some real automation, the realisation that scene states absolutely need to survive a reboot quickly sets in (currently they don't).

My advice: in addition to listening to other Vera users, become one, or as they say in (horrible) corporate-speak "eat your own dog food".  Install one and automate everything in your own home and perhaps the office too.  And I do mean everything.  Lights, heating, security, irrigation, home entertainment.  Interface with everything you can get your hands on.  Cause that's what a lot of us do, and it's where those questions are coming from: why isn't this supported, or the default, or possible, or made easier?

Thank you for the insightful feedback, really appreciate it.

As I mentioned in my previous posts, I was a VERA customer. Bought my first Vera in 2013.....couldn't do what i wanted...thats why i founded Ezlo :)
Cost effective: I am talking about sub $20 for a controller....

Please keep the feedback coming!

Offline Sender

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #36 on: August 19, 2018, 04:59:44 pm »
20usd for a controller. So do you say vera (or whatever the name will be) will remain a pay once product?
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Offline Buxton

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #37 on: August 19, 2018, 05:19:26 pm »
As mentioned by many, improving Vera's stability should be task #1.  I can see a move towards improved stability by tackling three areas (there may be more, but these three stand out for me.)

1.  Pushing up against storage size with firmware updates on the legacy boxes has not just bricked many a machine, but causes instability.  Firmware can be pared down by removing multi language support (ask the user what language they want) and other assorted bloatware.  Also, it may have made sense during the design phase a decade ago to use DD-WRT as the underlying linux engine, but I've never seen anyone take advantage of this internal routing capability.  Developers can correct me here, but I imagine that a slimmed down modern linux distro would do the job just fine.  As well, is it really necessary to partition the drive the way it currently is divided.  There seems to be a lot of inefficient use of storage.

2.  Remove the phone home functions.  There really is no need for any of this stuff, and these functions routinely cause Luup reloads.  Allow the user to determine if they want to check for updates or to connect to the cloud. Vera runs on a network and much of the network housekeeping can be done on the private network eg NTP etc.

3. Luup itself has any number of flaws.  Whether revising the language is an easy fix is something I cannot comment on.  But AKBooer reverse engineered the language in a very successful attempt to correct the most blatant Luup flaws.  If you can come to an arrangement with him, he can tell you precisely what needs attention and revision. 

You have an enormous customer base that would probably upgrade their boxes if they felt confident that Vera had their act together (as well as adding real additional value).   And then there are the tens of millions out there that will sooner or later join the automation world.  I think you made a wise choice to invest in the company as the upside potential is enormous.  Make use of the existing assets right in front of you --query the forum on # of posts and karma to get a very large list of platform experts. There are volumes of knowledge in the posts, but nothing takes the place of hands on expertise.  I would imagine most of the folks who have invested their time and energy into the platform would want you to succeed.

I believe you can capture significant market share if you truly see and understand what you have bought into, but HA is a rapidly evolving market, so who knows.  But regardless, good luck, have some fun with this, and best wishes!

Offline intveltr

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #38 on: August 19, 2018, 06:40:58 pm »
Thank you for the insightful feedback, really appreciate it.

As I mentioned in my previous posts, I was a VERA customer. Bought my first Vera in 2013.....couldn't do what i wanted...thats why i founded Ezlo :)
Cost effective: I am talking about sub $20 for a controller....

Please keep the feedback coming!

Thanks for taking the time to get to know the community a little!

As for a $20 controller: that is an ambitious goal and - if successful - would potentially change the market. However stability remains the #1 concern here as others have pointed out. If bringing the price down means skimping on essential hardware, then users who were happy about the price may be frustrated by the product?s shortcomings. Many of us here would much rather pay $200 for a controller with adequate hardware that keeps working under heavy load.

Another thing that?s been mentioned a few times: would you be willing to put up a public bug tracker or Kanban board so we can see bugs and device compatibility issues being registered and worked on?
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Offline ninkasi

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #39 on: August 19, 2018, 08:33:27 pm »
We are adding around 70 top notch developers on top of what Mios/Vera has, which will make this one of the biggest home automation development teams in the world. Of course we are also going to be employing a lot more people.. This team helped the zwave people find their own bugs in the zwave protocol! I say they are pretty darn good! We work very closely with the zwave people....

This all sounds extremely positive. Of course sometimes throwing a lot of resources at something doesn't necessarily make things better or enable things to be achieved faster. If you need to dig a hole in the ground, you sometimes can only have one person in there with a shovel.... ;-)

My 'wish list' would be:

#1 Stability/Reliability - As a priority, way before addressing features, review system looking at improving reliability. Analyse the various discussions on the site as well as support logs to identify possible root cause. Some third party apps may be contributing to issues, but the system should be able to flag those and prevent them from impacting on overall performance etc. Perhaps provide clear instructions for people to follow to backup their network, wipe their Vera clean, and restore.

#2 Features - Review and establish roadmap for inclusion of integrated support for likes of IFTTT (which has been in limited beta for ages) and Google Home (available via a third party plugin). Currently Vera is falling behind in these areas - it should be the centre of a Home Automation system but risks being left behind

#3 Leave the support group as is for the moment - it's excellent

#4 Cost model (pay once, no ongoing fees) stands out versus some competitors -  would be wary about changing that. Perhaps could lower the price by having some things as optional extras, as long as in doing so you do not make people start to consider alternatives. For example, I personally would be fine with some annual fee for support after (say) two years from purchasing a physical device.

#5 Less important things - adding in support for more third party devices, improving the mobile app....

I would also like to note that it's great if the ability for more advanced users to create their own plugins remains, but ease of use for setting up the box in the first place is just as if not more important. I'd suggest looking at the most popular plugins and work with the developers to see if they can be integrated into the core product. A lot of these plugins are there simply to fill a hole that frankly shouldn't be there. Why should a user resort to special plugins or coding if all they want to do is have a light go on if there's movement after sunset?

Most recently, I know of at least one thread where issues with Vera have been discussed which was removed from this board. Perhaps this was done in the best of intentions, but it was a constructive thread (making suggestions on how Vera could be improved) so removing it was not a healthy sign. Speaking of which, there seems to have been a problematic relationship with third party developers with a number giving up in disgust. This has lead to a number of plugins to stop being maintained or even being pulled. I do not know the details of why or what happened, but that is an area that definitely needs to be reviewed.

All in all I have been very impressed with my experience with Vera - both the product and (when I've needed it) support. It is not perfect, but is a great base to build an even better set of products. I look forward to ongoing improvements.
Home Automation veteran. Rolled own, then MisterHouse and X10, now Vera - mysensor arduino and ESP8266 network - zwave lights, locks, switches - milights - yeelights - google home(s) - Broadlink RM - raspberry pi(s) with various scripts for power and weather station - Logitech Harmony - Imperihome

Offline zedrally

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #40 on: August 19, 2018, 08:37:06 pm »
One question I have  and one that I would add to my wish list is why does Vera not support Regional frequencies from the settings menu.

To make available this feature (which I believe is there but never implemented) places it it on the world stage price wise.
Please don't reply with "we can't do that" because it is already being done with Z-Wave.Me and to a greater extent with Z-UNO.
Just make the device in whatever form it eventually becomes run from a USB and all will be good in the world again.
To long have we (in the Regional Areas) been price gouged with inflated retail prices, please consider this in your marketing strategy.
Good luck, you are indeed a brave man and I wish you every success with this venture.
Living in the Land of Oz, give me a vegemite sandwich. Home Seer, Vera Lite & Edge, Popp, Black Cat Smart Hub & Vera G, Black Cat Lite 1 & 2's a Black Cat Dimmer or 2, Fantem Tec and then some  Black Cat Cat's Eye PIR's & Door-Window Sensors, RFXComm, Broadlink RMPro & Mini plus a Z-UNO or 2.

Offline jeubanks

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #41 on: August 19, 2018, 11:23:30 pm »
I've looked at the eZLO product lineup.  The provided/available technical specifications give no insight into the actual product other than it's a plug with power.  The overview states WiFi and Z-Wave and everything is done through the mobile App or through the Web portal which leads to the conclusion of the product being CLOUD based.

Is this direction of Vera?

Offline Sorin

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #42 on: August 20, 2018, 02:37:49 am »
One question I have  and one that I would add to my wish list is why does Vera not support Regional frequencies from the settings menu.

To make available this feature (which I believe is there but never implemented) places it it on the world stage price wise.
Please don't reply with "we can't do that" because it is already being done with Z-Wave.Me and to a greater extent with Z-UNO.
Just make the device in whatever form it eventually becomes run from a USB and all will be good in the world again.
To long have we (in the Regional Areas) been price gouged with inflated retail prices, please consider this in your marketing strategy.
Good luck, you are indeed a brave man and I wish you every success with this venture.

@zedrally - I will partially answer in regards to z-wave localization.

To some extent this is possible but not recommended.
For example, we can change from software the frequency from EU to RU which is under a megahertz difference but it will definitely not work with greater spanned values.
Trying to change the Z-wave clock will result in unstable communication.

And it's certainly more than changing a few numbers to the internal clock. Different regions have different certification processes and legalities to cover.

I don't think multi-locale units is the solution, at least not technically, to the Australian situation. This needs to be approached at a different level. Maybe Melih is thinking about something.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2018, 02:39:26 am by Sorin »
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Offline zedrally

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #43 on: August 20, 2018, 02:46:41 am »
^^
Sorin,  i strongly have to disagree as it is possible, ZUNO is just one example where the frequency is set on load of the code. Z-Wave.Me has an Experts setting in which frequencies can be changed, so your argument does not hold.
As far as certification, the Z-Wave chip is certified to all frequencies, however I suspect it isn't in commercial interest to pursue this, rather let the consumer be gouged by the official regional importer.
Hopefully, this situation will now change to the benefit of end users.
Living in the Land of Oz, give me a vegemite sandwich. Home Seer, Vera Lite & Edge, Popp, Black Cat Smart Hub & Vera G, Black Cat Lite 1 & 2's a Black Cat Dimmer or 2, Fantem Tec and then some  Black Cat Cat's Eye PIR's & Door-Window Sensors, RFXComm, Broadlink RMPro & Mini plus a Z-UNO or 2.

Offline Sorin

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Re: MIOS Acquisition
« Reply #44 on: August 20, 2018, 06:54:53 am »
I'm sure Melih share's your view in matters of offering an easy, solid and cheap home automation solution.

May the best and feasible solution win.  ;)
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