Homey Community Forum

My 9 month personal review of Using a Homey - Spoiler alert -> Disapointed

Hey,
I think i would not mention it before I really got to the grips with Homey.
I wanted first to find out if I am the one at fault, or I hit the limits of the device on DAY one when I got it out the box.

After countless hours, of researching, of learning, of trying and testing things.
I came to the conclusion, I feel conned, and disappointed in Homey. ( Now to the point of deciding to leave the homey behind and switch to smthn more powerfull.)

So I turn to the community to see if I am at fault, or if it’s my Homey.
I bought the Homey because I wished to try “smart home” living out.
Carefully I wanted to do this step by step. Learning in-depth what I could do. And add things along the way. The salesman told me, “go with homey” you can do the most with that.

Day one, startup one problems arise.
Main of witch: range, stability of signal and software.

What are my problems with homey?

  • Range = rediculous.
    I have wired - powered Zwave devices all around now. And still i had to walk around with the Homey to find the exact point, where the Homey could actually do anything.

It is now in the middle of my living space. Actually not where i wanted to put it.
( as i do not like the design, i wanted to somehow hide it away. -> Not now :frowning: ) -> Still looking for a solution to that. )

- Range extenders are also needed on the road. :(…

-Stability.
More than once, when I add a device, all the others don’t work any more, or some don’t work anymore, etc etc.
I can’t count the times i’ve restarted the homey, and/or had to add all devices AGAIN to make them work… Redoing many flows.
-> The lack of an option to add wired network, is also a bummer.

- Adding new devices.
Almost NEVER the homey detects the device from try one.
even if i sit 3cm away from the Homey.

- Homey software Blocks. a lot.

- Speed !?

- Compatibility.
Yes “homey works with that”, no one says it’s only with Version 1 of Homey, but as Atom forced me to upgrade to V2 at first startup. Things become incompatible. And there is no way to find out before you buy if it’s V2 or not…

More than once this happened. It’s extremely annoying.

- Expandability.
Just give us at least the option to hang things on it? Things we need?
A Range extender for instance? Or I don’t know external IR, or TCP/IP cable?..
Just for stability?

- Lack of “log-in” interface,
or an Ipad app. ( or android)
It’s horrible to have to do everything on a small screen of a phone.

I would be fine with Ipad, but there isn’t an iPad app… a bit bigger screen. More comfort to install…

On V1 I see one could do this on his laptop or computer? …
Why did this disappear! it was great!..

So any remarks?
Does anyone have the same problems as I have?

I am at the point now, not daring to add things, or try things out.
Because I know things that worked before will not any more…

thanks
ju

P.S. I guestimate, the real Z-wave range of the Homey itself to be 1.5m maximum in clear sight.
I know this because I did measure it out…

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cant you please fix the layout on your post , its a mess to read.

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There are a lot of people that found Homey did not meet there demands / wishes.

I use homey as an atomization device and am very happy with that.
I use it’s zigbee only for Xiaomi doorsensors (batterie powered) throughout the entire house and have no problems. My lights go through the Hue hub so that’s a seperate zigbee network (and i have Ikea’s tradfri as well but more to play with etc.)
I have a few 433 KAKU switches that i also use outside and 868 Somfy sunscreens it all works flawless.

Some wifi led strips needed a fixed ip to keep working and the z-wave plugs are only stable on the same floor as homey is and one above. (Zigbee and 433 reaches way further in my house.)

Although it’s not perfect, I’m very satisfied with my homey and since 2.x it only got better.
B.t.w. if you install the phone app on an ipad you can use it with a bigger screen and there is a web based flow design interface as well.

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Hey Michael.
Thanks.

Well “on paper” the Homey would awnser to all my needs, and wishes.
It’s just the reality that doesn’t work.
And i can’t find out why!

Flow Designer web-based?..
Where can i find this?

And yah , phone app on Ipad, -> Doesn’t realy solve the problem,
It only zooms, not using the space… :slight_smile: hahaha yr funny

https://flow.homey.app/

better?

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THANK YOU! … Djesko.
So clearly they can make a “browser” management system…?
With a pretty good layout. That is Many times better than on a phone…
It most-probably even uses the same system and protocols.

Wo why not just put all function of the homey on that?.. @Atom Homey?
Settings? App Settings, ? etc?

Well, then it’s bigger on a ipad right?

And yah , phone app on Ipad, -> Doesn’t realy solve the problem,
It only zooms, not using the space… :slight_smile: hahaha yr funny

It does solve the problem if you want a bigger screen… it’s bigger right?
i now know you don’t want a bigger screen, you want a different app that uses more of the screen size of a tablet / ipad and also has to be maintained and developed by Athom. I rather have them focus on 2 (android and iphone?) apps so they can focus more on bug fixing and enhancing.

I’m very glad they made the choice to focus on mobile and keep updating a good (i)phone app so i can install my apps and devices on the spot and don’t have to have my kid sit behind my pc to observe (or have to drag the laptop to every device) while i keep pressing the buttons on the devices i want to add.
And i do like the web based flow designer has been added so when you really want to sit down with a cup of coffee and want to write a load of flows it’s possible.

If you do stop using your homey, i don’t know where you live but there are probably some community members interested in buying it. Also, if and when you find some better alternative, please come back after 9 months of use and tell us your experience. Maybe you can make some people swap there home automization device.

yeah the search started…

Just for info, Athom will be forced to make a dedicated Ipad app, if they want to keep Iphone users…
As with IoS 13, it’s mandatory, by apple to have an app for both devices,
To be in the App-Store…

So will be a problem solving it self I think :slight_smile:

It’s a pity though,
Homey has the nicest GUI, :frowning: …

F

Too bad it does not work for you. The Z-wave issue is really weird, as Z-wave makes a mesh network so no need to place your Homey in the center.
I don’t recognize most of the issues you are mentioning.

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I have Homey on my third floor, behind my wedding photo🤫. Range is not a real problem here. Have a few smart plugs, only the devices in the garage(fire door in between) and outside my house give sometimes problems. That’s annoying. At this moment I am installing a new wall outlet next to that door so zigbee and zwave can go right through. A tip from Sonos look into which channel Zigbee is on and change your devices as much as you can to another channel, for me Homey Zigbee is channel 11 and I experimentend with this in mind.

I made some flows restarting homey every week automatically and all the apps every day and the Sonos App every Three hours. Works fine for me. Dont’t have any problems since that moment. But I do not update anything unless there is no other option.

I only have a problem with aqara, have to pair it about three times, only the vibration sensor did not succeed and that is annoying.

I agrea. Would be nice. I would love to mod my Homey. But at this point I haven’t the guts to do this by myself.

This is personal. I hate computers and for me the mobile possibility works pretty good. Despite the crashes for the larger flows.

Overall we have a saying here in Friesland As ut net ken so as ut mut, dan mut ut mar so as it ken When is doesn’t work the way you want, you have to do it as it is possible.

Homey is leading for me as for buying. I have sold the devices that do not work or work good with homey and replaced them with devices that work with Honey. Also my Logitech Harmony Hub contributes to those new and older devices that don’t work with Homey, but do with Harmony, best of both worlds as I can import those Harmony devices inHomey

Hope you get a bit feeling how it could work for you. Also other controllers do have other problems. Some Fibaro, Vera users adore Homey, but it is also the other way around, some hate Homey. I am taking the middle of the road.

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Out from what you are describing I have the feeling you dont know the possibilities in Homey to the full extent. Like making flows to restart crashed apps etc, I have over 200 units connected with over 400 flows, I dont have much bugs or problems, if I have them it`s my own configuration that is the limitation! What I would say is that Homey requires a bit more knowledge and interest than other hubs compared! If you know the possibilities and how to exploit them Homey is just genious! There are still issues I would adress, like network connection (miss the RJ45), an other related stuff!

What I read from your post is that you probably should go for Samsung smartthings!

The Homey Pro is earning my a lot of savings, I should actually send a present to the Homey staff!

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Just curious how it can be that you waited 9 months to join this community and didn’t ask your questions a lot earlier. How can it be that you didn’t know about the web based flow page, because it is
widely discussed here. Do you even know there is a developer page where you can see your Z-Wave and Zigbee network and their meshes that can be at aid with troubleshooting?
So, research i believe, but then it looks like you missed a lot on this community.

Furthermore, your story is very shallow and general. You talk in general about trouble, “a device” or “some devices”, not specifying if it is Zigbee, Z-wave, 433, 868. You don’t mention the firmware version you’re on and which apps you have etc etc. This makes it nearly impossible to interpret what is going wrong and help you to solve things.

So, i understand what you say, but i think a lot of your problems can very likely be solved with some understanding how your situation really is and a lot of help from here.

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First of all, I am NOT an enthusiast. Homey is an expensive gadget and you have the right to expect a lot. That being said, I am using my Homey to control a number of Philips Hue lights along with Nexa switches and sensors as well as old fashioned X10, my home entertainment system including an Onkyo receiver and a Harmony Hub , a Danalock, my Tesla. It’s linked to both Google Assistant and IFTTT. To be honest, I don’t believe there is a more versatile device out there. The open architecture where anyone can write add-ons benefits a lot to that but it also adds vulnerabilities. Maybe you have to experiment some with different plugins, as I have. Don’t give it up just yet. :slightly_smiling_face:

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for the range issue did you see this mod ? may be it helps ? Homey antenna mod

Marcel, would you share your restart scripts with us? I was looking for something like that :blush:

So, I do not agree with most of your points but some are valid. A lot of your points are lack of research or lack of understanding. I’m sorry to put it like that, but there is no way around it. The web flow option has been released the week after the release of Homey 2.0. If you missed that, you never read an annoucement email, read the homey blog or read the community forums. That’s basic research. If you are disappointed, look in the mirror because a lot of that is of your own doing, or lack there of.

Some plugins or apps are not stable. But a lot of those are spare time projects of people who dedicate their free time to create something others may use. The quality varies and some projects are more succesful than others. This is the nature of community projects. Some are better than others. And sometimes an app is made by the Athom boys and ihas a bug. But it may come as a surprise to you, but even they are human and to err is human. Important to know is that bugs are fixed and most of them are quite rapidly.

With regards to range, I’m happy to report that my homey is situated next to a window on the side of my livingroom on ground level and it reaches sensors in our bathroom on the first floor, through a concrete construction, on the far end of our house. It’s about 12 meters to the side and 4 meters up. So 1.5 meters, erm no.

I do agree with Homey crashes or memory leaks. Roughly after a week, Homey tends to get “tired”. We have a couple of scene masters here, one button of each I dedicated to rebooting Homey. If we notice Homey is getting sleepy, we push the button and it reboots. Obviously this should be fixed but for now we find this an acceptable workaround.

I do dare you to find a better solution than Homey to steer the same variety of smart home hardware with the same out-of-the-box experience. I have yet to find it. I owned a HomeWizard before and let me tell you, Homey is far more versatile.

Homey isn’t flawless, we can all agree on that. But it is one of the best allround solutions out there. You may be disappointed, but a significant part of that is your own doing and there rest is something you have to learn to live with, unless you want to lock-in to a vendor-specific solution that is less flexible and more expensive.

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I’m surprised so few come to these sort of conclusions. Objectively speaking, the Homey is a real disappointment. Subjectively speaking, it is alright compared to its competitors, as Hubitat is a nightmare of its own. I just think it is an absolute shame the amount of wasted potential lies in this product.

Myself, I spent way too much time, tinkering with way too many different home automation systems. To be honest, it just simply is not worth it, unless you like wasting a metric shit ton of time getting little things to work.

My recommendation to people will usually be to get really simple things, like Philips Hue, and just work with that. If you want to connect it somehow, just use HomeKit - to be fair, it just works…

My own system at home that I ended up with after wasting way too much time, is a mix of Home Assistant, deCONZ and HomeBridge.

To be honest, no one should waste their valuable time on something like Home Assistant - it is never going to be worth a damn. deCONZ is alright, as it is extremely simple to set up, and enables me to share a ZigBee mesh between Xiaomi, Philips and Osram devices easily. But damn, it is absolutely mind blowing how slow development is, and absolutely essential features are pushed for not days, not weeks but months or years. HomeBridge really, to me, is the most valuable tool to date, and its been around forever.

Question is really, when is Home Automation going to mature even a little bit, so that it actually makes sense to “use”?

A little bit off topic, but here is my restart flow

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