Vera - Smarter Home Control Forum

General => Getting Started & Initial Setup => Topic started by: jamieboy05 on March 12, 2016, 03:18:18 pm

Title: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: jamieboy05 on March 12, 2016, 03:18:18 pm
Hello:

I'm a new customer that was very excited about the VeraPlus release.  I ordered it and received it earlier this week.  I'm moving to you from Smartthings, however, I'm thinking I'm gonna go back to the Smartthings platform.  This new controller has been a nightmare!

1).  The first issue I'm having is with the System Alert's in the yellow bar on the dashboard page.  I cannot get these to ever clear...  They'll clear and come back, or clear from the logs under Settings, but not from the dashboard.  They're annoying, and make me think that something's wrong with a device, when it's reporting some nonsense.

2). The energy card on the dashboard shows no information.  I have added my home energy monitor from aeotech (which you claim to support) and it shows up with the 3 different devices (also annoying and creates a lot of clutter) on the devices tab, reporting the information, however when I click energy, I get "Ergy gateway serial is not present in user: No cookie".  I have tried uninstalling and reinstalling the app; uninstalling then clicking on energy, accepting the user agreement then installed again; installing through the apps menu; uninstalling, rebooting, accepting and reinstalling but nothing works.  When I go to the ergy website, it says that they don't currently support the Vera platform due to changes in the UI.  This is ESPECIALLY frustrating because that's a big selling feature, and it's yet another thing that doesn't work.

3) The weather in the upper right hand corner rarely shows the correct information.  It'll bounce back and forth between what is actually is and weather from someplace a lot warmer than my house... I have to go back in settings and update the location information and restart the box for the information to update.

4). You have a very limited database of truly compatible devices.  I can pair a device as a generic z-wave or zigbee device, however half of the functionality either doesn't work, or it shows up incorrectly in the Vera.  Examples being, the motion sensors I have are Zigbee Motion sensors, but also should relay temperature... The temperature does not relay and there's no way to change the settings of the device to add it (without cracking open a programming book).  One of the GE Switches I have installed is ACTUALLY a Fan switch not a Light switch, and there's no way to change the device icon to match the device.  One of my plug-in Jasco dimmer modules won't turn on half the time because it keeps saying the battery in it is dead (when it's PLUG IN module and contains no battery's) The Garage Door opener I installed showed up as a door lock, so everytime I clicked on unlock all, my garage doors opened as well... NOT something I wanted by any means...

5)  Your app integration is not reliable.  I had applications crash, or mysteriously delete themeselves, and they all show up under the DEVICES menu under apps cluttering this interface even more.

6). The Bluetooth radio serves no function apparently.  I could never get it to find devices, nor I find and pair with it from any device.

Smartthing's IDE backend was more user friendly, allowing you to create custom applications and device types easily.  I have kind of read up on how to do it with Vera, however, it's going to require a lot more time than I'm willing to spend learning.  The UI is slow and laggy... I have problems with adding devices because the configuration screen times out or the device will be added but the page never continues forward.  So I'm at a loss as what to do except go back to SmartThings. It's looking a lot better than this.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 14, 2016, 12:23:47 pm
Hi jamieboy05,

You say a lot here, I only saw your post because it required approval by an Admin. Much of what you have said here really should be in a Customer Care ticket so we can help you resolve the issues. Email support@getvera.com and enable remote access by going Settings--> Customer Care and include the code in the email me. Please CC me so I can track you ticket.

Regarding the apps, we do not maintain them nor are we responsible for them. There are a few that the authors have chosen not to update their plugins to UI7, unfortunately there is little we can do to force them, the reason they are still available is that we have users who still use our older user interfaces.

Regarding the Bluetooth device functionality; we have lots of plans there. Be patient. There are a lot of exciting things coming to the platform, the hardware was the fist step.

There are many more Z-Wave devices that are compatible with the platform. To be included in the list the device had to score over a 7/10 in compatibility. Devices that are included in the UI are ones where we have taken the the time and effort to create a wizard that walks you through the steps to include/pair the device.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Trotsky40 on March 14, 2016, 01:20:47 pm

6). The Bluetooth radio serves no function apparently.  I could never get it to find devices, nor I find and pair with it from any device.


At least the Bluetooth radio is active in the VeraPlus. The Smarthings V2 hub has the radio but it is completely disabled so you can't do anything with it.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on March 14, 2016, 03:13:30 pm
@Marc, I think it would be useful if there was a list of known problems and ranking in severity.  It is hard to be patient when we are in the dark on when things might be fixed.  I opened a ticket a couple of weeks ago and have no idea when and if a resolution will be coming.  As much as I want my Vera Plus to do what I want, I am not sitting back idling.  I purchased a Wink Hub and have a SmartThing hub  on the way.
Title: Wow!
Post by: Z-Waver on March 14, 2016, 05:24:43 pm
A scathing review and ALL of it is valid! There's no real fix for him at Customer Care, there's only explaining why it will not work.

@Marc Shenker - This thread really needs to be pushed upstream in your command chain. My tone seems to be directed at you personally, but what follows is directed at Vera Ltd. not (just) you. As you may have seen from my posts, I'm a long time user of Vera and even I have been "guilty" of explaining away issues. But all of @jamieboy05 issues are 100% valid and most are LONGSTANDING issues, well overdue for a fix.

1.)  System alerts on the dashboard. - People have complained about the inability to clear these since they were first implemented in UI6. Forum members have figured out how to zero the log file and implemented LUUP to do it, but a {Clear} button that works should have been in place long ago if not outright removing the banner.

2.) Energy reporting/monitoring. - Ergy has be a massive pain point and a problem since UI5 or maybe even earlier. That PoS plugin should have been completely removed from Vera when you launched UI6, but it's still bundled by default in UI7 and it's still causing confusion and issues. It's not at all unreasonable for people to expect Ergy to work and expect it to NOT break Vera by simply enabling it and exploring its existence. It's not unreasonable for them to find some documentation on it either.

3. Wonky weather. - Meh. But, Vera failing to remember her location? That needs fixing! And it should not be so hard/unintuitive for people to manually enter their Lat/Lon. The "fancy" hidey bits javascript interface is not intuitive and it just increases the slowness of an already slow interface. Dump that rubbish.

4. Limited compatible devices. - There are a few Z-Wave devices that need to be incorporated - device files and functionality- into Vera. Some users have been begging for them to be updated for a year. There's zero excuse for Fibaro sensors or others to still not work with Vera. And, launching Vera Plus with Zigbee compatibility as a selling feature with only three or some such compatible Zigbee devices takes some marketing balls. I know that there was a lot of demand for the Plus, but people should have been warned up front that ZigBee didn't support any devices. There's still time to add a banner with cautionary warnings that the functionality is pending to the Vera Plus product page and avoid further future ill will and angry customers.

5. App integration. - I'm not sure if the user is referring to Vera plugins. Naturally, these are beyond Vera's control. But, if he is referring to Vera smartphone apps, then he's got another valid point. The Native Vera smartphone apps are atrocious! Ooh, it's got geofencing. But it only "works" with one phone and it mostly doesn't work worth a hoot. Vera could have bought one of the existing third party apps and had a better offering. Furthermore, unless Vera Ltd. is going to RADICALLY improve the smartphone app, buying out one of the third parties might still be a good idea.

6. Bluetooth serves no function. - The front of the Vera Plus box proudly and prominently advertises ZigBee, Bluetooth and WiFi functionality. Bluetooth is completely unusable at this time. Vera Ltd. didn't even offer an option to use it for some sort of Home/Away presence against a smartphone. It literally is unusable. ZigBee is only slightly better. The WiFi implementation is barely usable, still lacking configuration capability for the 5GHz radio, and no client mode configuration option.

It's a sad state of affairs. Hearing the constant complaints since the launch of Vera Plus has got to be demoralizing for the Vera Ltd. staff and it cannot be good for business either. But, so many of the complaints are long standing and valid. I'm not talking about the countless; 'I wish it did this' or 'I mistakenly thought it did that'. I'm talking about stuff advertised on the box that never worked. Vera Plus literally does NOT do what it says on the tin!

In my opinion, Vera Ltd. has enjoyed a market leading position in the past, certainly in terms of Mios. But recent releases from large scale manufactures and retailers quickly, almost instantly, eclipsed Vera's market. Fortunately for Vera, most have been miss starts, so far. Vera Ltd, cannot afford to squander what little lead it may currently enjoy. 

Piling on poor quality will establish a very negative connotation for Vera in the market place. Known issues need to be fixed. This is much more important to Vera's future than releasing a security and monitoring option that will be even more fraught with issues and complaints. Development resources - good ones - need to be focused on the current product. Development on future product needs to be deprioritized, at least temporarily.

Ignore your customers at your peril.


You have my permission, indeed my encouragement, to delete this post. But, show this thread to upper management. "Your house is on fire" and it seems that you've mistakenly chosen to use Z-Wave smoke detectors.  ;)

Edit: I forgot to rant about the lack of a manual. People can't RTFM if there is no FM.

I also forgot to address the inability to change device icons. People have been asking for that since Vera's inception. I presume that Vera Ltd. has made a conscious decision to never implement such a feature.
Title: Re: Wow!
Post by: integlikewhoa on March 14, 2016, 06:06:59 pm
A scathing review and ALL of it is valid! There's no real fix for him at Customer Care, there's only explaining why it will not work.

@Marc Shenker - This thread really needs to be pushed upstream in your command chain. My tone seems to be directed at you personally, but what follows is directed at Vera Ltd. not (just) you. As you may have seen from my posts, I'm a long time user of Vera and even I have been "guilty" of explaining away issues. But all of @jamieboy05 issues are 100% valid and most are LONGSTANDING issues, well overdue for a fix.

1.)  System alerts on the dashboard. - People have complained about the inability to clear these since they were first implemented in UI6. Forum members have figured out how to zero the log file and implemented LUUP to do it, but a {Clear} button that works should have been in place long ago if not outright removing the banner.

2.) Energy reporting/monitoring. - Ergy has be a massive pain point and a problem since UI5 or maybe even earlier. That PoS plugin should have been completely removed from Vera when you launched UI6, but it's still bundled by default in UI7 and it's still causing confusion and issues. It's not at all unreasonable for people to expect Ergy to work and expect it to NOT break Vera by simply enabling it and exploring its existence. It's not unreasonable for them to find some documentation on it either.

3. Wonky weather. - Meh. But, Vera failing to remember her location? That needs fixing! And it should not be so hard/unintuitive for people to manually enter their Lat/Lon. The "fancy" hidey bits javascript interface is not intuitive and it just increases the slowness of an already slow interface. Dump that rubbish.

4. Limited compatible devices. - There are a few Z-Wave devices that need to be incorporated - device files and functionality- into Vera. Some users have been begging for them to be updated for a year. There's zero excuse for Fibaro sensors or others to still not work with Vera. And, launching Vera Plus with Zigbee compatibility as a selling feature with only three or some such compatible Zigbee devices takes some marketing balls. I know that there was a lot of demand for the Plus, but people should have been warned up front that ZigBee didn't support any devices. There's still time to add a banner with cautionary warnings that the functionality is pending to the Vera Plus product page and avoid further future ill will and angry customers.

5. App integration. - I'm not sure if the user is referring to Vera plugins. Naturally, these are beyond Vera's control. But, if he is referring to Vera smartphone apps, then he's got another valid point. The Native Vera smartphone apps are atrocious! Ooh, it's got geofencing. But it only "works" with one phone and it mostly doesn't work worth a hoot. Vera could have bought one of the existing third party apps and had a better offering. Furthermore, unless Vera Ltd. is going to RADICALLY improve the smartphone app, buying out one of the third parties might still be a good idea.

6. Bluetooth serves no function. - The front of the Vera Plus box proudly and prominently advertises ZigBee, Bluetooth and WiFi functionality. Bluetooth is completely unusable at this time. Vera Ltd. didn't even offer an option to use it for some sort of Home/Away presence against a smartphone. It literally is unusable. ZigBee is only slightly better. The WiFi implementation is barely usable, still lacking configuration capability for the 5GHz radio, and no client mode configuration option.

It's a sad state of affairs. Hearing the constant complaints since the launch of Vera Plus has got to be demoralizing for the Vera Ltd. staff and it cannot be good for business either. But, so many of the complaints are long standing and valid. I'm not talking about the countless; 'I wish it did this' or 'I mistakenly thought it did that'. I'm talking about stuff advertised on the box that never worked. Vera Plus literally does NOT do what it says on the tin!

In my opinion, Vera Ltd. has enjoyed a market leading position in the past, certainly in terms of Mios. But recent releases from large scale manufactures and retailers quickly, almost instantly, eclipsed Vera's market. Fortunately for Vera, most have been miss starts, so far. Vera Ltd, cannot afford to squander what little lead it may currently enjoy. 

Piling on poor quality will establish a very negative connotation for Vera in the market place. Known issues need to be fixed. This is much more important to Vera's future than releasing a security and monitoring option that will be even more fraught with issues and complaints. Development resources - good ones - need to be focused on the current product. Development on future product needs to be deprioritized, at least temporarily.

Ignore your customers at your peril.


You have my permission, indeed my encouragement, to delete this post. But, show this thread to upper management. "Your house is on fire" and it seems that you've mistakenly chosen to use Z-Wave smoke detectors.  ;)

Edit: I forgot to rant about the lack of a manual. People can't RTFM if there is no FM.

I also forgot to address the inability to change device icons. People have been asking for that since Vera's inception. I presume that Vera Ltd. has made a conscious decision to never implement such a feature.

I'll quote it so it sticks again...... but Bravo on your post. I couldn't agree with you more and I think over the last few years I just learned to work around the issues, not use built in home mode, geofence, stock app...... And others but that wasn't the real solution but it's the only one VERA offers. These are just some of the reasons for my slow exit.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: BOFH on March 14, 2016, 06:11:12 pm
I've been watching the Vera Edge and Vera Plus since I got them and they have the exact same location as my Vera 3 using Ui7 and show the same temperature. I set the location on one using the town and the other using the lat and long values gleaned from the geofence for my home location. The temperature also matches what WU reports from a local station less than a 1.5 miles away. I am not sure why yours is causing you these issues.

On the Ergy plugin and prominent slide taking up space on the UI, I agree, that thing really needs to go and be made optional. It was barely usable under UI5 and I have never been able to get it to work under Ui7 so I really do not use it. I believe I am far from the only one in the community with that sentiment.

On the notifications I again agree. They are confusing and I've been ignoring them for the longest time due to the amount of useless 'notifications' popping up. Which is a sad state for when there really is a notification I should take note of.  That really needs a rework to make it do what it is supposed to do.

As far as applications go, I'm assuming you mean community written plug-ins. I have no problem with them showing up under Devices as that is what they basically are. That is what the Dashboard is for. You select the devices you want to view by clicking the 'star' in the upper right corner. Only those devices with a 'yellow star' show up in the dashboard. Allowing you to hide any devices you don't want to see but preserving full access to them in the Device view. To be totally honest, I rarely use the Web UI, but control most of it via Android phones/tablets used as wall controllers using AuthomationHD and Imperihome. I only use the Web UI if I have to make changes or add/configure devices. I've been spending a lot of time on it lately though as I am starting to make the switch from 2 Vera 3 units to a Vera Plus and a Vera Edge unit.



Title: Re: Wow!
Post by: sre on March 14, 2016, 09:11:55 pm
I fully agree with Z-waver and Integlikewhoa, some one should own this project and get it off as soon as possible.  Emiting feelng that the company is not really interested in the products they sell, is bad indeed.

A scathing review and ALL of it is valid! There's no real fix for him at Customer Care, there's only explaining why it will not work.

@Marc Shenker - This thread really needs to be pushed upstream in your command chain. My tone seems to be directed at you personally, but what follows is directed at Vera Ltd. not (just) you. As you may have seen from my posts, I'm a long time user of Vera and even I have been "guilty" of explaining away issues. But all of @jamieboy05 issues are 100% valid and most are LONGSTANDING issues, well overdue for a fix.

1.)  System alerts on the dashboard. - People have complained about the inability to clear these since they were first implemented in UI6. Forum members have figured out how to zero the log file and implemented LUUP to do it, but a {Clear} button that works should have been in place long ago if not outright removing the banner.

2.) Energy reporting/monitoring. - Ergy has be a massive pain point and a problem since UI5 or maybe even earlier. That PoS plugin should have been completely removed from Vera when you launched UI6, but it's still bundled by default in UI7 and it's still causing confusion and issues. It's not at all unreasonable for people to expect Ergy to work and expect it to NOT break Vera by simply enabling it and exploring its existence. It's not unreasonable for them to find some documentation on it either.

3. Wonky weather. - Meh. But, Vera failing to remember her location? That needs fixing! And it should not be so hard/unintuitive for people to manually enter their Lat/Lon. The "fancy" hidey bits javascript interface is not intuitive and it just increases the slowness of an already slow interface. Dump that rubbish.

4. Limited compatible devices. - There are a few Z-Wave devices that need to be incorporated - device files and functionality- into Vera. Some users have been begging for them to be updated for a year. There's zero excuse for Fibaro sensors or others to still not work with Vera. And, launching Vera Plus with Zigbee compatibility as a selling feature with only three or some such compatible Zigbee devices takes some marketing balls. I know that there was a lot of demand for the Plus, but people should have been warned up front that ZigBee didn't support any devices. There's still time to add a banner with cautionary warnings that the functionality is pending to the Vera Plus product page and avoid further future ill will and angry customers.

5. App integration. - I'm not sure if the user is referring to Vera plugins. Naturally, these are beyond Vera's control. But, if he is referring to Vera smartphone apps, then he's got another valid point. The Native Vera smartphone apps are atrocious! Ooh, it's got geofencing. But it only "works" with one phone and it mostly doesn't work worth a hoot. Vera could have bought one of the existing third party apps and had a better offering. Furthermore, unless Vera Ltd. is going to RADICALLY improve the smartphone app, buying out one of the third parties might still be a good idea.

6. Bluetooth serves no function. - The front of the Vera Plus box proudly and prominently advertises ZigBee, Bluetooth and WiFi functionality. Bluetooth is completely unusable at this time. Vera Ltd. didn't even offer an option to use it for some sort of Home/Away presence against a smartphone. It literally is unusable. ZigBee is only slightly better. The WiFi implementation is barely usable, still lacking configuration capability for the 5GHz radio, and no client mode configuration option.

It's a sad state of affairs. Hearing the constant complaints since the launch of Vera Plus has got to be demoralizing for the Vera Ltd. staff and it cannot be good for business either. But, so many of the complaints are long standing and valid. I'm not talking about the countless; 'I wish it did this' or 'I mistakenly thought it did that'. I'm talking about stuff advertised on the box that never worked. Vera Plus literally does NOT do what it says on the tin!

In my opinion, Vera Ltd. has enjoyed a market leading position in the past, certainly in terms of Mios. But recent releases from large scale manufactures and retailers quickly, almost instantly, eclipsed Vera's market. Fortunately for Vera, most have been miss starts, so far. Vera Ltd, cannot afford to squander what little lead it may currently enjoy. 

Piling on poor quality will establish a very negative connotation for Vera in the market place. Known issues need to be fixed. This is much more important to Vera's future than releasing a security and monitoring option that will be even more fraught with issues and complaints. Development resources - good ones - need to be focused on the current product. Development on future product needs to be deprioritized, at least temporarily.

Ignore your customers at your peril.


You have my permission, indeed my encouragement, to delete this post. But, show this thread to upper management. "Your house is on fire" and it seems that you've mistakenly chosen to use Z-Wave smoke detectors.  ;)

Edit: I forgot to rant about the lack of a manual. People can't RTFM if there is no FM.

I also forgot to address the inability to change device icons. People have been asking for that since Vera's inception. I presume that Vera Ltd. has made a conscious decision to never implement such a feature.

I'll quote it so it sticks again...... but Bravo on your post. I couldn't agree with you more and I think over the last few years I just learned to work around the issues, not use built in home mode, geofence, stock app...... And others but that wasn't the real solution but it's the only one VERA offers. These are just some of the reasons for my slow exit.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 16, 2016, 12:28:36 pm
Guys let me start by saying that if you really think that we put our products, our products being both the hardware and the software, out there and don't care about our users and their feedback and how they are received you are very mistaken. We had a senior management meeting yesterday with members of the team from all over world, focusing on the quality of what we do and putting in place more and better process to better insure the quality of our products.

So far this year we have increased our staffing by over 20%, we have added members to the Dev Team, Customer Care, QA and the Mobile Apps Teams amongst others as well as having promoted our best from within into management and into positions where their talents can be better used to benefit our platform and our users.

The VeraPlus puts the hardware in place for some very exciting things that we are working on. We have chosen to release it with all of the radios active even with limited product support today. It would not surprise me if there were already members of the community already playing with the Bluetooth radio. We have large companies coming to us asking to be integrated into the platform including Samsung with their connected appliances which they announced, and included us in, in their CES keynote speech.

Device integration: as many of you know, as a company we want to be compatible with as many devices as we can but it is a two way street. We had tried to get the documentation from First Alert's Zcombo for a significant amount of time to no avail; it took me shaming them publicly and asking the Executive Director of the Z-Wave Alliance to get involved in order to get the documentation we needed to integrate their device. In the case of Fibaro, pressure on them to work more closely with us from the community would help. Note that the devices listed on the compatibility pages of our website are not the only devices that are compatible on our platform; they are the devices that work best and have scored over a certain threshold. They have been certified, that means that our field Application Engineers have tested them and we that we have also included the inclusion instructions into the UI.

Z-Waver, if you do not think that we value your opinion you are very mistaken. You and others who have posted comments in this tread are both valued users and are voices who's opinion we have great respect for and we listen to very closely. I do not respond to everything I read in the forum but my lack of response should not be mistaken for us not listening. I respond to as much as I can but there are only so many hours in the day, in my opinion not nearly enough. I respond when there is something of value that I can add but I will try to respond at least an acknowledgement more often and I will ask that if there is anything that any of you think I should see to email me a link, with the volume of posts we get on a daily basis I and the others who watch the forums cannot see everything.

Z-Waver, I appreciate your mentioning that posts to me are not directed at me personally, I don't take them that way, I am the spokesperson here, that is one of the many roles that I serve at Vera. I do take what I read here in the forum and pass it to the appropriate people and over time as I percieve a prevailing attitude I pass that on as well.  I could go on for some time about the other hats that I where; most of us on the management team wear lot of hats but take note, as we are adding to the ranks of the company we are adding mostly developers and engineers whose impact will have the most and fastest impact on the platform and our users.

Note: we do not edit or delete posts from the forum unless inappropriate language is used, the post is spam or there are complaints from other members; we then judge what action should be taken. We believe that the forum belongs to our users as much as it belongs to us. If we were to delete posts for any reasons it would erode your, our users, voice and confidence that you can post here whatever you want to say whether we like it or not. There have been some very negative posts and threads in my tenure here, some very incendiary as well as posts about what platform people are leaving us for; it is not our place to edit or delete them. We do not censor the forum.

So to wrap up, there is a lot going on at Vera, we are expanding our team and improving platform. We are listening to you and value the feedback we get from you. I will try to be more vocal in the forum so you know that we are listening. We as a company are always trying to put forth the best products that we can and address all of the needs of the very diverse cross section of users that we have. We as a company are continually reviewing and improving our processes and focusing them on providing all of our users the best platform with the most choice.
Title: Re: Wow!
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 16, 2016, 12:50:05 pm

Edit: I forgot to rant about the lack of a manual. People can't RTFM if there is no FM.

I also forgot to address the inability to change device icons. People have been asking for that since Vera's inception. I presume that Vera Ltd. has made a conscious decision to never implement such a feature.

I forgot to comment on documentation. We couldn't actually compile a manual and print it. Thing change too quickly. http://support.getvera.com/ is the place where we put documentation. We have recently revamped the content there, it was confusing, there was content for UI5, UI6 and UI7. It now contains documentation for UI7. We have added links to the videos here as well. Why is that important besides the fact that you get to see my pretty face? They are produced to help new users better understand the platform, I got an email the other from a user who watched the UI overview video and it answered all of the questions he was going email customer care about. Why is this important? One of the tasks on my plate is answer user questions in the videos so that they don't have to ask Customer Care so that Customer Care is available to work with users with more significant  issues which can't be handled with out a Customer Care interaction. With the advent of the new portal, users are shown links to the most important videos that will help get them oriented. Again, a deliberate step to free up the Customer Care Team.

There are a lot of other points here, I am passing this thread on to the entire management team.

We are taking steps to improve the documentation and we will continue to.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: jlind on March 16, 2016, 01:24:57 pm
@Marc - Maybe a little more transparency would help with the frustration about bugs.  I suggest that you use a system similar to what MediaMonkey uses: (http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view_all_bug_page.php).  It logs bugs/improvements and allows customers to view the progress.  Customers can even read programmer notes.  I imagine you can filter any proprietary knowledge with it.

Here's a link to MediaMonkeys changelog, which links to their bug tracker..
http://www.mediamonkey.com/information/changelog/

It is the best system I've seen or used.  It could free up a lot of support time and complement this forum tremendously.
Title: Re: Wow!
Post by: margo on March 16, 2016, 03:18:46 pm
Thank you for your post, it was dead on!
Cheers

A scathing review and ALL of it is valid! There's no real fix for him at Customer Care, there's only explaining why it will not work.

@Marc Shenker - This thread really needs to be pushed upstream in your command chain. My tone seems to be directed at you personally, but what follows is directed at Vera Ltd. not (just) you. As you may have seen from my posts, I'm a long time user of Vera and even I have been "guilty" of explaining away issues. But all of @jamieboy05 issues are 100% valid and most are LONGSTANDING issues, well overdue for a fix.

1.)  System alerts on the dashboard. - People have complained about the inability to clear these since they were first implemented in UI6. Forum members have figured out how to zero the log file and implemented LUUP to do it, but a {Clear} button that works should have been in place long ago if not outright removing the banner.

2.) Energy reporting/monitoring. - Ergy has be a massive pain point and a problem since UI5 or maybe even earlier. That PoS plugin should have been completely removed from Vera when you launched UI6, but it's still bundled by default in UI7 and it's still causing confusion and issues. It's not at all unreasonable for people to expect Ergy to work and expect it to NOT break Vera by simply enabling it and exploring its existence. It's not unreasonable for them to find some documentation on it either.

3. Wonky weather. - Meh. But, Vera failing to remember her location? That needs fixing! And it should not be so hard/unintuitive for people to manually enter their Lat/Lon. The "fancy" hidey bits javascript interface is not intuitive and it just increases the slowness of an already slow interface. Dump that rubbish.

4. Limited compatible devices. - There are a few Z-Wave devices that need to be incorporated - device files and functionality- into Vera. Some users have been begging for them to be updated for a year. There's zero excuse for Fibaro sensors or others to still not work with Vera. And, launching Vera Plus with Zigbee compatibility as a selling feature with only three or some such compatible Zigbee devices takes some marketing balls. I know that there was a lot of demand for the Plus, but people should have been warned up front that ZigBee didn't support any devices. There's still time to add a banner with cautionary warnings that the functionality is pending to the Vera Plus product page and avoid further future ill will and angry customers.

5. App integration. - I'm not sure if the user is referring to Vera plugins. Naturally, these are beyond Vera's control. But, if he is referring to Vera smartphone apps, then he's got another valid point. The Native Vera smartphone apps are atrocious! Ooh, it's got geofencing. But it only "works" with one phone and it mostly doesn't work worth a hoot. Vera could have bought one of the existing third party apps and had a better offering. Furthermore, unless Vera Ltd. is going to RADICALLY improve the smartphone app, buying out one of the third parties might still be a good idea.

6. Bluetooth serves no function. - The front of the Vera Plus box proudly and prominently advertises ZigBee, Bluetooth and WiFi functionality. Bluetooth is completely unusable at this time. Vera Ltd. didn't even offer an option to use it for some sort of Home/Away presence against a smartphone. It literally is unusable. ZigBee is only slightly better. The WiFi implementation is barely usable, still lacking configuration capability for the 5GHz radio, and no client mode configuration option.

It's a sad state of affairs. Hearing the constant complaints since the launch of Vera Plus has got to be demoralizing for the Vera Ltd. staff and it cannot be good for business either. But, so many of the complaints are long standing and valid. I'm not talking about the countless; 'I wish it did this' or 'I mistakenly thought it did that'. I'm talking about stuff advertised on the box that never worked. Vera Plus literally does NOT do what it says on the tin!

In my opinion, Vera Ltd. has enjoyed a market leading position in the past, certainly in terms of Mios. But recent releases from large scale manufactures and retailers quickly, almost instantly, eclipsed Vera's market. Fortunately for Vera, most have been miss starts, so far. Vera Ltd, cannot afford to squander what little lead it may currently enjoy. 

Piling on poor quality will establish a very negative connotation for Vera in the market place. Known issues need to be fixed. This is much more important to Vera's future than releasing a security and monitoring option that will be even more fraught with issues and complaints. Development resources - good ones - need to be focused on the current product. Development on future product needs to be deprioritized, at least temporarily.

Ignore your customers at your peril.


You have my permission, indeed my encouragement, to delete this post. But, show this thread to upper management. "Your house is on fire" and it seems that you've mistakenly chosen to use Z-Wave smoke detectors.  ;)

Edit: I forgot to rant about the lack of a manual. People can't RTFM if there is no FM.

I also forgot to address the inability to change device icons. People have been asking for that since Vera's inception. I presume that Vera Ltd. has made a conscious decision to never implement such a feature.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Chrisfraser05 on March 16, 2016, 08:00:38 pm
Very good posts on here.

I've been both delighted and pulling my hair out frustrated with Vera so far in the 3 months I've been using it.

Stability seems to have been a key failing, in my case Support were not too slow to get back to me and they have actually fixed the issues I've had.

On the whole though I was hoping for a little more polish, but I do also understand we are at the bleeding edge of home automation technology.

it does sound like things are going to improve, I hope this really happens.

Cheers
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 17, 2016, 10:38:46 am
@Marc - Maybe a little more transparency would help with the frustration about bugs.  I suggest that you use a system similar to what MediaMonkey uses: (http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view_all_bug_page.php).  It logs bugs/improvements and allows customers to view the progress.  Customers can even read programmer notes.  I imagine you can filter any proprietary knowledge with it.

Here's a link to MediaMonkeys changelog, which links to their bug tracker..
http://www.mediamonkey.com/information/changelog/

It is the best system I've seen or used.  It could free up a lot of support time and complement this forum tremendously.

jlind, I replied to ChirsK privately regarding this issue but I guess it is not going to go away. We are in a highly competitive business. Our competitors have gone so far as to copy the style of our videos and they have completely changed the architecture of their platforms to align more with ours. We just can't put out a detailed list of things that are not working properly in our platform. If there is an issue that you are experiecing you can email me and I can look into it. Email not private message so I can forward to other members of the team if I have to.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: jlind on March 17, 2016, 12:07:38 pm
@Marc - I'm not having problems and, in general, the devices I have are pretty stable for the way I use them.  I was just offering a suggestion to help minimize the frustration being voiced.  Thanks for the response.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: xeinth on March 19, 2016, 12:30:13 am
@Marc - Maybe a little more transparency would help with the frustration about bugs.  I suggest that you use a system similar to what MediaMonkey uses: (http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view_all_bug_page.php).  It logs bugs/improvements and allows customers to view the progress.  Customers can even read programmer notes.  I imagine you can filter any proprietary knowledge with it.

Here's a link to MediaMonkeys changelog, which links to their bug tracker..
http://www.mediamonkey.com/information/changelog/

It is the best system I've seen or used.  It could free up a lot of support time and complement this forum tremendously.

jlind, I replied to ChirsK privately regarding this issue but I guess it is not going to go away. We are in a highly competitive business. Our competitors have gone so far as to copy the style of our videos and they have completely changed the architecture of their platforms to align more with ours. We just can't put out a detailed list of things that are not working properly in our platform. If there is an issue that you are experiecing you can email me and I can look into it. Email not private message so I can forward to other members of the team if I have to.

We've had stability issues with VeraPlus crashing since the release, as well as issues with PLEG, the most critical plugin to enable automation.  Vera seems clueless as to these problems.  Users on this forum have been trying to track down the issues, and customer care does nothing to resolve the problem.  No one even acknowledges the widespread nature of these issues and any plan to address them.

The platform has to be stable and work.  It is not reliable right now, that undermines any other feature or future plans you may have.

Do you think Vera under UI7 is reliable at this point?  Is it as reliable as UI5?

I wouldn't worry any about competitors stealing your ideas or work.  The reason Vera is successful is because of the ecosystem.  As long as you have a strong base product, your user base will make it a great product.  The best part of Vera are the plugins (ALTUI, PLEG, etc) that you have nothing to do with directly.  You competition can make that happen unless you lose your third party developers to them.

x
Title: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Freddan101 on March 19, 2016, 02:49:00 am
@Marc - I  don't think being transparent with the top user issues you have acknowledged and are working on will hurt you. Explain how. What could hurt would be to share new features to come and that's not what we're talking about here.

You really need to work closer with the most important plugin developers and put some time and priority into that. Without Pleg for example Vera would be pretty bleak. Look at this issue that is very urgent to us.

Vera3 regularly restarts and reboots. PLEG memory issues?
http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php?topic=36593

I've been a Vera user for seveal years. As a tech guy I can take a lot of pain regaring things that don't work perfectly and that need tweaking. But I'm getting close to the point where I don't want to put all time into trying to fix issues instead of a actually expanding and enjoying my system.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: intveltr on March 19, 2016, 05:06:16 am
I wouldn't worry any about competitors stealing your ideas or work.  The reason Vera is successful is because of the ecosystem.  As long as you have a strong base product, your user base will make it a great product.  The best part of Vera are the plugins (ALTUI, PLEG, etc) that you have nothing to do with directly.  You competition can make that happen unless you lose your third party developers to them.

Very good point. And sharing information on issues can also help Vera Ltd, and reduce the load on their support staff. Case in point: my migration to Vera Plus, which has been a couple of days of pain and suffering. I've had many issues, some of which were resolved by support, and some by me, after hunting for clues on the forum or after tedious trial and error. I have reported all issues and resolutions to support, and they must have gained this info before from others having the same problems. So why is it that this information hasn't found its way into the migration process description yet?  And I'm not sure support even have a decent internal knowledge base; they have been unresponsive on several issues that cannot be uncommon. If Vera Ltd also share known problems with us, we will be spared from spending time on unfixable stuff or filing needless tickets.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on March 19, 2016, 09:46:48 am
If Vera Ltd also share known problems with us, we will be spared from spending time on unfixable stuff or filing needless tickets.

I think the point was they don't want anyone to know they have "known problems" let alone try and list them all out.

The surprise is half the fun as a user and competition wont take the time to find out themselves. So its all well hidden.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Freddan101 on March 19, 2016, 10:10:23 am
You have to spend 10 mins browsing the forum and you know every issue that the users are having. So not that big of a secret.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: intveltr on March 19, 2016, 11:57:08 am
I assure you that is not the case
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Freddan101 on March 19, 2016, 12:14:47 pm
How do you mean?
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: intveltr on March 19, 2016, 12:47:23 pm
Not all problems are reported here, or solved here, or can be found here in a reasonable time frame.  A forum really isn;t a substitute for a bug tracker.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Z-Waver on March 19, 2016, 04:24:42 pm
@Freddan101 - Bug trackers are useless to users. Vera had a public bug tracker not too long ago and it was discontinued because it was useless and was a resource suck to maintain it. Suppose there was another one. What would it do for you? Is there anything that you could do about it? Do you have access to Vera's source code and if you did could you fix it? Would it make you feel better to know that your favorite bug, a show stopper for you but no one else on the planet, has been deprioritized or marked 'will not fix' and cause you to post threads like this one ranting that your favorite bug has been outstanding for six months and you're outraged? Bug trackers are utterly pointless for users.

If you want to see an illustration of publicly unknown issues that @intveltr is talking about, just have a look at the change log for a recent firmware release. There will be dozens of fixed issues that you never knew existed and that were never discussed on the forum or anywhere else outside of the company. There's absolutely zero need or value to publicly post what are likely thousands of bugs, as is the case in any complicated software, that have little or no impact on most users.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Freddan101 on March 19, 2016, 06:05:01 pm
@Z-Waver - You might be right. I'm just reaching for some kind of way getting the feeling that something is actually going on at Vera Ltd. I guess if Vera staff, like Marc here, would be a bit more active in the forum that would be a way to give that "we care" feeling. Just like the one I got when I saw Marc's post.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 21, 2016, 01:20:59 pm
@Marc - I  don't think being transparent with the top user issues you have acknowledged and are working on will hurt you. Explain how. What could hurt would be to share new features to come and that's not what we're talking about here.

You really need to work closer with the most important plugin developers and put some time and priority into that. Without Pleg for example Vera would be pretty bleak. Look at this issue that is very urgent to us.

Vera3 regularly restarts and reboots. PLEG memory issues?
http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php?topic=36593

I've been a Vera user for seveal years. As a tech guy I can take a lot of pain regaring things that don't work perfectly and that need tweaking. But I'm getting close to the point where I don't want to put all time into trying to fix issues instead of a actually expanding and enjoying my system.

We do work with the development community, especially with Richard from PLEG; Richard pretty much has a Bat phone to us. The Vera3 is a fairly old platform with limited memory. In the tread you point at above, Richard rightly suggests using a USB stick to store logs; this frees up memory in the controller. When the controller runs out of memory it usually reboots. If you don't need verbose logging on, turn it off, it takes up memory and processing cycles.

The topic also came up in the other thread about the network connection. One of the uses of the network connection, even when you're not actively downloading is used to automatically backup your configuration and your logs daily. It also syncs the clock. Every time the controller reboots, the clock if offline for a few minutes; over a long period of time without a internet connection it can get out of sync.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on March 21, 2016, 01:29:57 pm
@Z-Waver - You might be right. I'm just reaching for some kind of way getting the feeling that something is actually going on at Vera Ltd. I guess if Vera staff, like Marc here, would be a bit more active in the forum that would be a way to give that "we care" feeling. Just like the one I got when I saw Marc's post.

Freddan, I/we do the best we can to be active in the forum. I could spend days in the forum and not see everything. There is just too much. If there is ever an issue that you come across and want to know if we know about it email me. If you think there is a thread that we should see, email it to me.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 15, 2016, 02:15:00 pm
It has been over a month since the this thread was started.  I thought there might be an update by now, but no.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 15, 2016, 02:51:07 pm
It has been over a month since the this thread was started.  I thought there might be an update by now, but no.

Chris your right a month since this thread, but it's been 4 months since any update was released at all. Even Beta updates seemed to have stopped. You would assume there is no problems or issues to fix. They also lead you to believe that it takes time to put out a quality update, which you would assume will be awesome and fix a majority of the issues since its been months. I guess we will have to see.  ;D 
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 16, 2016, 11:40:04 am
I waited patiently for the Vera Plus.  I waited for firmware to support the devices I have.  It is unfortunate that Vera hyped this product and never delivered on their claims.  I am not waiting any longer.  Time to pull the plug and moving on.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: XA44Owq26HxCq88 on April 18, 2016, 05:53:39 pm
I guess there's a revolving door here for users! As ChrisK bows out, I am anticipating the arrival of my first Vera product (the VeraPlus). I'm reading posts here that comment on issues that users are encountering. I find it enlightening. However, the same (but different) issues were present in my previous HA system.
  Documentation, as in user guides, is significantly better here, something a newcomer appreciates. I'm very happy to see Marc from Vera involved here. The last HA system had wonderful support, I just hope Vera measures up.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 18, 2016, 07:08:57 pm
@XA44Owq26HxCq88, I am not leaving Vera, just giving up with my Vera Plus, it is just too frustrating.  I still have my Vera Lite, and I like it a lot and will continue to use it.

I have yet to find the perfect system.  It seems many of the affordable systems have their good points, but also some major downsides.  I really like the fact that the Vera Lite is not bound to some cloud services.  It is a little under powered though.  And I really like the mobile app HomeWave for Vera that runs on iOS devices.

But that leaves me with a problem, some devices in my network couldn't talk.  To fill a void that I had hoped the Plus would take care of, I purchased a Smartthings hub.  It was a bit of work but now I have the Vera Lite and Smarttings talking to each other via openHab.  Vera takes care of Z-Wave, which it is very good at.  Smarttings takes care of ZigBee, which it does very well.  And it all shows up on my iOS device using HomeWave.  If anyone cares, Smartthings has local LAN control now.



   
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: SteveH2 on April 19, 2016, 07:44:01 am
Well, this is a very illuminating exchange and, for me, actually quite encouraging.   I was beginning to wonder whether or not Vera was going to be around in 3 years time.  It may not be but at least it sounds like the company has a real desire to develop and improve Vera so, hopefully, I have landed on a long term platform that is worth my set-up effort (not to mention my cash).  I too have had many frustrations with my Vera Edge (only been using this for 8 months) but one of the worst has been the lack of good documentation. People on this forum are very helpful but, as with all forums, the help is not always entirely accurate or is contradictory. During my learning curve it has been, and is, very important for me to be able to recover my system back to a stable version but even the process of backing up, resetting the unit and falling back to a known good version does not seem to be documented anywhere other than by various questions and part-answers in the forum.       
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Z-Waver on April 19, 2016, 08:19:35 am
  Documentation, as in user guides, is significantly better here
I can't begin to imagine how bad your former system's documentation must have been.

I was beginning to wonder whether or not Vera was going to be around in 3 years time.
Unless MiOS gets acquired, in which case all bets are off, I'm very confident that Vera will be around in three years. Will they be a niche product or a market leader? That I can't be sure of.

Regardless of what happens to the company, your Vera will still continue to work as it already does.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Marc Shenker on April 19, 2016, 10:00:59 am
Z-Waver, as a company we believe that our approach to what we do is different; we set out to democratize this category and make automation affordable for normal people. When MiOS, MCV and Vera began, there were no reasonably priced options available that allowed a real level of integration or automaton and we still don't nor do we intend to charge a monthly fee for the level of control that we curretnly provide and we still provide Customer Care at no charge for as long as you have our controller. We remain true to those ideals today and they are what continue to guide us as a company. Many companies in our space have come and gone, they have changed how they do things, eliminated fees, changed the location of their logic... all in response how the oldest player in this space has been and continues to be true to how they do things.

We have grown significantly this year, and we will continue to. Have there been bumps in the road, sure, will there be in the future? We hope not. As we grow we continue to grow we constantly evaluate and adjust the processes we have in place to ultimately insure a better product for our users.

With the strategic investment that was just made in our company, things are going to get exciting!
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: XA44Owq26HxCq88 on April 19, 2016, 10:05:34 am
My (soon to be) previous system had NO documentation that I could find, so anything is an improvement. I may use it as a secondary hub, but that's a low priority, seeing as how I have all zwave stuff. I love the local control aspect of vera. I can't wait to explore the possibilities. I see that there is a plug in for the old X-10 system, I've had that for many many year.  What is the Homewave that you are referring to?
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 19, 2016, 12:48:59 pm
HomeWave is a mobile app to control your Vera.  It runs on iOS.  You can learn more about under the topic Remote Control.  I love it, and it is part of the reason I stay with Vera.

From a development standpoint, I thought Smartthings documentation was quite good.  Documentation at Vera is a cluttered mess.  Mark has been doing good things to improve new things.  The community here is a huge asset and without it, I don't know how you would figure things out.

Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: XA44Owq26HxCq88 on April 19, 2016, 01:26:57 pm
I found the online group from my previous HA hub and found them to be invaluable. That's why I'm here, trying to prevent my first experience with VP from being a frustrating event. (At least no too frustrating). I checked out HomeWave, is there a version for android? I couldn't find it.

On another note, is there a way to bypass the verification questions when I try to submit notes here?
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Freddan101 on April 19, 2016, 01:35:56 pm
Homewave is not available on Android. I recommend that you check out Imperihome which has support for many different systems.

The verification questions will disappear after a few posts.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 19, 2016, 01:37:46 pm
I found the online group from my previous HA hub and found them to be invaluable. That's why I'm here, trying to prevent my first experience with VP from being a frustrating event. (At least no too frustrating). I checked out HomeWave, is there a version for android? I couldn't find it.

On another note, is there a way to bypass the verification questions when I try to submit notes here?

Homewave is only ios.... Imperihome is the next best and its for both Android and ios, but it was originally made for Android and it's Android version is far ahead of it's ios version.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: pix530 on April 21, 2016, 01:04:11 am
Interesting, its really hard decision what should I buy - Vera or Smartthings....
Vera works without internet, SS does not.
SS has more devices and some things that not able to work with Vera at all...

Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 21, 2016, 11:47:02 am
SS has more devices and some things that not able to work with Vera at all...

I'm no so sure that there are "more devcies" that work on SS vs. vera. Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices but I know my alarm panel which is a crap load of door/window/motion/smokes that won't work on SS.

There is plenty of goods and bad's to both and even myself have started moving on but SS didn't handle all of my devices. 
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: pix530 on April 21, 2016, 03:50:38 pm
" Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices"
- Weaker? I dont see they are supported at all.

" SS didn't handle all of my devices.  "
- For example? I wonder to know device details please?

Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 21, 2016, 04:20:10 pm
" Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices"
- Weaker? I dont see they are supported at all.

" SS didn't handle all of my devices.  "
- For example? I wonder to know device details please?

The little list vera provides is not all that works. They do have working zigbee devices now but They only started supporting zigbee 2 months ago. I perosnally don't own any zigbee devices only z-wave. I have never bought a z-wave device that does't work, but I also buy local run of the mill devices, nothing that no one has scene before. 

All my alarm panel devices which accounts for more then 60% of my devices and 95% of my smart home logic are not supported on SS. Without this I would be stuck with alot of bulky battery devices. I try to stay away from both wireless and batteries as much as I can.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 21, 2016, 04:34:08 pm
" Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices"
- Weaker? I dont see they are supported at all.

" SS didn't handle all of my devices.  "
- For example? I wonder to know device details please?

The little list vera provides is not all that works. They do have working zigbee devices now but They only started supporting zigbee 2 months ago. I perosnally don't own any zigbee devices only z-wave. I have never bought a z-wave device that does't work, but I also buy local run of the mill devices, nothing that no one has scene before. 

I do own several ZigBee devices and I know that if it isn't on the short, supported list, all bets are off.  I imagine it will improve, but when is the big question.

Quote
 
All my alarm panel devices which accounts for more then 60% of my devices and 95% of my smart home logic are not supported on SS. Without this I would be stuck with alot of bulky battery devices. I try to stay away from both wireless and batteries as much as I can.

I am curious how your alarm panel connects to your Vera?  And is the logic done in a plug-in? 
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 21, 2016, 05:28:17 pm
" Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices"
- Weaker? I dont see they are supported at all.

" SS didn't handle all of my devices.  "
- For example? I wonder to know device details please?

The little list vera provides is not all that works. They do have working zigbee devices now but They only started supporting zigbee 2 months ago. I perosnally don't own any zigbee devices only z-wave. I have never bought a z-wave device that does't work, but I also buy local run of the mill devices, nothing that no one has scene before. 

I do own several ZigBee devices and I know that if it isn't on the short, supported list, all bets are off.  I imagine it will improve, but when is the big question.

Quote
 
All my alarm panel devices which accounts for more then 60% of my devices and 95% of my smart home logic are not supported on SS. Without this I would be stuck with alot of bulky battery devices. I try to stay away from both wireless and batteries as much as I can.

I am curious how your alarm panel connects to your Vera?  And is the logic done in a plug-in?

I'm not only Talking ZigBee when I speak for "Devices" on a list. The Vera List for zwave is very short and I don't think more then a few of my devices are even on the list. So my point is the list is not the end all, even if you say it is for zigbee. Again I don't have zigbee so I can't confirm or deny anything on zigbee side. Same goes for bluetooth. Both Zigbee and Bleutooth are a few months old to VERA and there hasn't been any updates since that was even released so I don't expect vera is as strong in either as SS would be that has had zigbee for years. I also know that zigbee isn't as big as z-wave either in my house, city or state.

Alarm panel is connected via USB and there is no plugin for SS. Without a plugin the devices don't work. Again "devices" not z-wave only, not zigbee only, not bluetooth only, just devices in general using any kind of protocol or connection. They don't work with SS where they do with Vera and Homeseer.

Logic with VERA is done with either built in "Scenes" or PLEG plugin. Homeseer is built in Logic called "Events". In SS without all the devices being able to connect to SS logic won't work for all of the sensors I have. And besides a few virtual sensors all the motions, doors, windows, smokes and such are what make up my "Automation" Logic.

So where SS may excel in one area Vera might in another and neither are perfect for everyone. 
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ChrisK on April 21, 2016, 05:56:47 pm
" Vera definity is weaker on zigbee devices"
- Weaker? I dont see they are supported at all.

" SS didn't handle all of my devices.  "
- For example? I wonder to know device details please?

The little list vera provides is not all that works. They do have working zigbee devices now but They only started supporting zigbee 2 months ago. I perosnally don't own any zigbee devices only z-wave. I have never bought a z-wave device that does't work, but I also buy local run of the mill devices, nothing that no one has scene before. 

I do own several ZigBee devices and I know that if it isn't on the short, supported list, all bets are off.  I imagine it will improve, but when is the big question.

Quote
 
All my alarm panel devices which accounts for more then 60% of my devices and 95% of my smart home logic are not supported on SS. Without this I would be stuck with alot of bulky battery devices. I try to stay away from both wireless and batteries as much as I can.

I am curious how your alarm panel connects to your Vera?  And is the logic done in a plug-in?

I'm not only Talking ZigBee when I speak for "Devices" on a list. The Vera List for zwave is very short and I don't think more then a few of my devices are even on the list. So my point is the list is not the end all, even if you say it is for zigbee. Again I don't have zigbee so I can't confirm or deny anything on zigbee side. Same goes for bluetooth. Both Zigbee and Bleutooth are a few months old to VERA and there hasn't been any updates since that was even released so I don't expect vera is as strong in either as SS would be that has had zigbee for years. I also know that zigbee isn't as big as z-wave either in my house, city or state.

Alarm panel is connected via USB and there is no plugin for SS. Without a plugin the devices don't work. Again "devices" not z-wave only, not zigbee only, not bluetooth only, just devices in general using any kind of protocol or connection. They don't work with SS where they do with Vera and Homeseer.

Logic with VERA is done with either built in "Scenes" or PLEG plugin. Homeseer is built in Logic called "Events". In SS without all the devices being able to connect to SS logic won't work for all of the sensors I have. And besides a few virtual sensors all the motions, doors, windows, smokes and such are what make up my "Automation" Logic.

I see.  I think about getting an alarm system from time to time.  Wires are out of the question, and wireless solutions don't appeal to me for now.  Anyway, what I have is working pretty well.  He's powered by puppy chow.  No wires, or batteries to change. 

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So where SS may excel in one area Vera might in another and neither are perfect for everyone.

I totally agree!
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 21, 2016, 06:53:02 pm
I see.  I think about getting an alarm system from time to time.  Wires are out of the question, and wireless solutions don't appeal to me for now.  Anyway, what I have is working pretty well.  He's powered by puppy chow.  No wires, or batteries to change. 

I have 2 weimaraners but they are not always awake, home or inside the house. The alarm I have is not monitored nor do I use it like I should in a traditional alarm fashion. The keypad is never used.

But with hidden door/window sensors 1-2.00 each
http://www.home-security-systems-answers.com/magnetic-door-switches.html

A roll of 100ft wire was like 30.00
The alarm kit was 120.00 (panel, keypad, wall wort, battery backup, siren)
The motions are 10.00

So for 40 interior/exterior doors and windows along with 10 motions its around 300.00. There is no z-wave issues or including for these 50 devices, there is little load on vera, no batteries to change, no distance or routing to worry about.

With a normal alarm you wouldn't have interior doors or that many motions, but I use them for logic. Pantry door open turn on light, Bathroom door closed with light on turn on fan. Laundry room door and such. I also have alot more motions then needed for an alarm due to the same logic with turning on lights when motion is sensed. When my 5 year old gets out of bed at night dimming lights on come for him to find his way to the restroom.

Z-wave motions and door/window sensors at 25 to 30 each on the cheap side (25.00) 50 devices like above is 1250.00 and an alarm system will last years past my z-wave devices. There is alot more reasons besides price too, some people already have them in a house they bought, other see the long term savings and longevity.
 
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: RichardTSchaefer on April 21, 2016, 08:15:53 pm
Also most motion sensors attached to an alarm system have faster response  for both motion detected and motion not detected which is very important for re-active automation based on motion in the house.

Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: pix530 on April 22, 2016, 01:38:24 pm
I am at design phase for building security/HA system in house. So it is a q for me:
DSC1616+ VERA or just HA device?

My friend runs security company so he insisted on DSC while my setup is pretty simple - 3 motion detectors from security perspective.
Thats it.

So going with DSC would cost me $300 in hardware plus installation fees.
Going with HA device - IVY, SS or Vera would cost me half that price with 0 installaiton fees.

As my final plan is to add smart locks and some lighting control I think about HA device anyway.

Also I am not fan of legacy keypads (I really like to manage from phone, locks or remote). Modern keypad would require additional wireless module so I basically overpay another $200 just to have nice keypad that I am not plan to use at all.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: RichardTSchaefer on April 22, 2016, 04:40:32 pm
Your DSC connected sensors are far more reliable, responsive, and cheaper than Z-Wave sensors.
I have a DSC1664  with about 50 sensors (about half are wireless) and over 100 Z-Wave devices.

I wish I would have wired my house for more DSC connected motion sensors.
For full automation you want a motion sensor in EVERY room ... a door or motion sensor for every closet and small room ... including utility closets/rooms, mud rooms, ... etc .. Any place there is a LIGHT.

So I have a reliable alarm system that is well connected to the home automation system (Vera).
I never use the alarm panel keypad, except when Vera has a problem.
You still need a keypad to program the alarm system. So yes, it seems like a wasted cost, and I have the expensive Wireless keypad because I did not want to run wires to were I needed an entry keypad (in case of Vera Problems, and yes I have needed to use it occasionally).

Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2016, 05:51:41 pm
I am at design phase for building security/HA system in house. So it is a q for me:
DSC1616+ VERA or just HA device?

My friend runs security company so he insisted on DSC while my setup is pretty simple - 3 motion detectors from security perspective.
Thats it.

So going with DSC would cost me $300 in hardware plus installation fees.
Going with HA device - IVY, SS or Vera would cost me half that price with 0 installaiton fees.

As my final plan is to add smart locks and some lighting control I think about HA device anyway.

Also I am not fan of legacy keypads (I really like to manage from phone, locks or remote). Modern keypad would require additional wireless module so I basically overpay another $200 just to have nice keypad that I am not plan to use at all.

If your only talking 3 motions then it's hard to say go with an alarm. And 3 motions only is not going to help with much logic, or alerts around the house with vera either. I also think your over paying for a DSC 1616 and 3 motions. One motion comes with the kit to begin with. And that's only 150 or less depending where you shop for the hardware. If you can't install that's going to jack up the price quick as labor is the expensive part these days. 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/DSC-Hard-wired-Security-System-Keypad-PC-1616-Panel-Complete-w-extras-NEW-/152050791389?hash=item2366eef3dd:g:1rIAAOSwUdlWcN7n

But going back to the 3 motions and that's it. I would not get an alarm for just that, but I think you will end up with alot more sensors soon. And anyone that wants to install a home alarm system with only motions is not a great installer anyways. Motions only trip when someone is already in the house for one. Usually you should try and attempt to discourage someone from even trying to get in, in the first place. I personally start that with outdoor motions and notifications if I'm not home or have been inside for several mins and not went outside.
At min glass break or door and window sensors will atleast trip as they open before they go in not after they have climbed threw the window and stand up in your house. 3 motions also seems like very little to cover bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen or any other areas that have windows/doors or entry points. So that further seems like they can climb in threw a window and move around a room before 1 of the 3 motions gets tripped. Even with a very small house and open floor plan I can't see only 3 motions doing a great job of covering anything but the common areas, but I don't know your floorplan or layout so I could be wrong.   

Are you planning on paying to have the DSC panel monitored? If you are going that far then an alarm is the better option as VERA is not reliable enough or currently have monitoring yet.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Thinkfire on May 15, 2017, 09:49:27 am
Just a bump.  A year later...


And...not much has changed.  How much patience do you want clients to have?
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: integlikewhoa on May 15, 2017, 11:58:06 am
Just a bump.  A year later...


And...not much has changed.  How much patience do you want clients to have?

Waiting for someone else to change is probley not the best approach to actually receive the change you need or want. Balls in your court also.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: Albert1 on June 05, 2017, 05:37:56 pm
I have the same issues as mentioned a year ago. The Zigbee interface is "flaky". When dding a generic Zigbee device either nothibg happens or the Zwave green light start blinking!!!. For me the only way to add generic devices is use one of the existing ones, but it only works some times.  I think the Smartthings or Wink is the only and much easier way.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: kigmatzomat on June 10, 2017, 08:42:17 am
How many ZigBee devices work on both wink and Smartthings? I thought the overlap of support was limited to maybe two manufacturers.
Title: Re: Coming from SmartThings, 1 week into it.
Post by: ccollinscj on June 19, 2017, 10:13:18 pm
Great....I figure I would check back on Vera,  since I have now been a customer of Smartthings for a few years now.  What appealed to me is not having to rely on having an internet connection.  So I figure I would give VeraPlus a go and right out the gate I have errors with energy app which looks like a cluster for the last few years going through this forum.  I called customer support,  I was given the old throw over the fence line saying I will have to get with some one and they will get back with you and we don't know when....wtf.....is that.  If this continues in the next few days I am boxing it back up and sending back to Amazon and letting them know the device and service is defective.  And will invest in a cell connection for my Smartthings.