Another Kickstarter Controller

I just noticed another new controller is being developed on kickstarter.

This is being pushed by cloudmedia, the people behind popcorn hour and popbox.

For those that are interested.


This seems interesting. The problem is that I and others have been burned on these tech kickstarter projects.

With that caveat, this would be great to see a device with multiprotocal capabilities and an open system.

Lol, love the title of “Upcoming Features as the World Finds Us”…and than using the brand recognition of all those magazines that haven’t heard of them yet.

Very, very sneaky…

Looks nice, like the open hard and software idea. Like the $79 price but as said, too many have been burned by these kind of Kickstarter projects.
Also to much marketing hype on that page making me worry.

I read a little deeper on this one, probably because I am a sucker. They seem to thier hardware certified z wave plus, based in the website

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These are all over the place… I jumped on Almond+ only for them to deliver it 9 months late and about 10x less features than expected. I just sold it on ebay since I never opened it and never planned to due to their lack of HA focus.

I now see Kickstarter as half good and half full of scammers and idiots. These people might be intelligent but they have no clue how to put out products and it seems most don’t even come close to fulfilling even thier initial promises/claims.

With the big boys (Google, Samsung, Apple, etc) now diving big into the HA game I suspect the startups will die.

The only kickstarter product I now own is a Pebble watch. Bought it recently as it was on sale for $99 and there was a Vera compatible app for it. I like being able to grasp my wrist and run a scene (like muting the stereo) from anywhere in the house (I don’t carry around my cell when I am at home but wear a waatch). I’m hoping the developer keeps working on it and adds device support.

But yeah, I’m pretty weary about Kickstarter as well. The only other Zwave solution I am keeping an serious eye on right now is SmartThings and that is because Samsung bought them. They have the deep pockets and clout to do something with it. Hopefully something good rather than a proprietary solution. My worry with Vera is that they are light on both development budget/manpower and marketing budget/manpower and as such my be drowned out by the big players. Iris is not open enough nad I’m not about to go pay a monthly fee. Same for Nexia and StaplesConnect. Wink I’m unsure about but it only being accesible via smartphone and not even via a browser has me worrying about the openness of that solution.

Kickstarter type stuff is very hit or miss. I have had some good and some bad experiences. One thing about this particular devices is they seem to somehow be associated with popcorn hour people, and those are real devices. I am also a bit encouraged by the apparent certification of z wave which seems to make it less likely to be vaporware. Time will tell I guess, but this one I will keep an eye on.

As far as big players vs small, the point is well made and taken. However, I fear the big players will be locked down systems.

My personal experience with Popcorn Hour products was with Popbox, and it was not good at all! The user base for their other older products seemed to be quite satisfied, but with the Popbox they were very much the same as Micasaverde in that their “release” software was riddled with bugs and often broke existing features/functions. They released a newer piece of hardware and then stopped updating the original Popbox at all. After dealing with it and being a beta tester for over a year, I finally cut my losses and spent the cash to build an HTPC. I have been a happy XBMC user ever since.

On the HA front, you just can’t currently beat Vera for the capabilities you get for the price, even with all the quirks. It is good to see other players joining the game though. Everyone will have to step their game up to compete.

My intention was to highlight the competition and new z-wave certification.

I am neither endorsing or pointing any negative towards either this product, cloudmedia or kickstarter. If you are here reading this, I believe you would be able to determine this for yourselves which is quite evident by some of the posts.

What I am hoping for now is MCV to produce their trump card with their upcoming product announcements.

Resurrecting this old threat with all the talk of Wink recently and the new Vera Edge…

Although I didn’t publicly announce it, I decided to back the project and it was announced today that the product will start shipping next week.

I thought a little comparison of the claimed hardware vs the edge might be of interest. According to their materials, they claim the following hardware:

ARM11 640MHz processsor, 512MB NAND and 256MB DDR3 RAM.

According to amazon, the vera edge is:

600MHz MIPS SoC, 128 NAND, and 128 MB DDR2 RAM

Both are z wave plus, both are , or claim to be, capable of working locally without internet connection.

I was a little bit underwhelmed by the new Vera Edge hardware, and am hoping to be pleasantly surprised by the Stackbox. For 79 bucks, I haven’t risked much. The problem that jumps out to me is the lack of developer support on the Stack. They maintain a forum, and since no one has the hardware yet, there is little to no public activity out there on development. I can only hope that will come once it is comes to people. For what it is worth, I thought it should be part f the discussion since I get the impression that I am not the only one looking for a Vera alternative.

I saw it and after the almond+ (which is still coming along…just very very slowly) I decided not to back the stack box.
Now I kinda wish that I had because they say they are going to support openHAB.
Not really sure how they will do this, but it will be interesting to see how it pans out.