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Why is it so hard to add new integrations to HA hubs


TimothyWMurray
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I have a Staples Connect.  I'm not sure this was the right solution for me.  I like it because it has 8 bazillion radios.  But I don't like it because there is not fiddle option, no community development, no experimental feature section.  

 

For Example: Vera has a pretty open environment where users can exchange or even sell add-ons that enable integration with other devices (I am most jealous of MyQ integration).   Smart things has experimental integration that are developed by the community.  

 

I don't have any direct experience using these community developed integrations, but reading the forums for hubs that I don't have got me to wondering:  Why has staples connect added support for exactly 0 useful devices since I bought my hub in April. 8 months and zero new integrations announced?  

 

How hard can it be?  I mean that as a real question not a criticism.  I've written a lot of code in my life, but never a driver for a radio.  Is this a hardware driver issue, or a code difficulty issue or a business partnership issue?  Earlier this year there were "unauthorized integrations" springing up for Sonos and Drop Cam that got some attention, so maybe the issue is a business issue not a technical issue.

 

Especially with Z-wave, my understanding is the integrations should not be too difficult.  And why not let the manufactures of the end devices write the integrations? But then the z-wave integrations on Staples Connect are of varying quality.  So according to the manual Nexia hubs have more features for Schalge Locks than the Staples Connect hub.

 

I remember reading on the Revolv Blog (before it was deleted) that they planned to add 10 devices per week.  And then that they were change from a no SQL to a traditional RDBMS and then that they were trying to create an integrator channel and then that they were gone.  So something was harder than they expected (other than selling a $300 hub in a market where other hubs were literally free).

 

By contrast I have a Synology sitting under the xmas tree that I will open later this week, and from their website I see a major upgrade to the surveillance station component for IP cams has been released between the time I ordered and now.  

 

So I'm hoping someone can post a technical enough explanation for why each device takes so long to add to home automation hubs, and then I will be better able to be a patient consumer.  

 

 

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I think most people don't understand why and that's the reason companies charge too much for home installation. $20,000 for labor is not unheard of.

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