Great way of putting it!
Great way of putting it!
Alexa/Google the tobacco/alcohol of the HA world.
Agreed It’s a selling point.
As much as I like it when it is free, I do recognised that it is not a viable business plan. I am using a few plugin made by very good people and somehow I wish they would be rewarded for their work. I made some modest voluntary contribution to the well developped and SUPPORTED plugin. In all fairness, I think that all plugin should be on a paid basis if they are maintained.
I am not too keen on the montly payment approach. I preffer to go with an upfront payment. This way I know exactly what it will cost me before hand. I also understand that some plugin does require regular updates while others are more static.
I am using the DSC Alarm panel plugin. This one is very static and never got updated at least not for a long while. Since the DSC alarm panel does not really changes, there is no need to change the plugin regularly. I would not mind paying a one time price for a new version, fixing some known shortcoming and proper documentation. Since this one never changes, I really would not understand paying every months for maintenance.
Some other plugin like the MyQGateway is requiring constant work because the MyQ is changing on a regular basis. For that one, I could understand a monthly contribution.
For the “How Much” again it depens on the complexity and maintenance required. But I think that for a first, one time procurement, something around $20 to $40 would be that maximum that I would pay for a plugin working 100%. For the monthly stuff, $1 to 3$ a month again for a well SUPPORTED and documented plugin.
Remote access, like it or not, is part of HA. This should be included. Now, facy addons, could be offed for a modest price.
I also think, like suggested by others, than a 30 days trial would be required.
Hope this help
Great response. Cheers
I really like what vezimpl said and probably agree. I use the AD2USB Honeywell alarm app and I don’t think it has changed in 20 years. But, I would pay for an upgrade if it were useful. But really, here is what I would pay for. 1). Stability. I can’t go on vacation knowing my wife will have access to a working vera for the entire trip. And frankly, I can’t right now even go away for the weekend and know that it will work while I am gone for three days. 2). Something I could value add. I am really no longer interested in this situation, but when I first started, I wanted to be able to develop systems for homeowners, cabin owners, airbnb owners that would just work. I quickly realized that I could never support these systems because they could not be depended upon to work and I couldn’t explain that to the owner that I was billing to make a house call.
I would agree that Alexa should be free, but I would pay a minimal charge for Security system integration, IFTTTT integration, MyQ, and Sonos. For older stable stuff it should probably be a one time fee, but for modern integration services a small subscription fee would be OK.
I do NOT want to pay for stability except from when I buy the system (controller + firmware). It should work reliable from the start and keep on doing so
Yea, I probably didn’t express my comment well. Probably feel more like I will not pay anything more until stability is there.
I agree with most of what has been said above. I don’t like subscription models at all, but especially for stuff which doesn’t have (or require) ongoing maintenance.
I like “lifetime” subscriptions, however, I do understand from a developers POV that is an unsustainable business model.
Somewhere in the middle, lies the version license - I get free support for the current version, a discount off the next version - but my version (if I choose to stick with it) doesn’t get crippled. That way, the Developer is going to get my hard earned, if and only if, he adds value to the next version.
Voice control and remote access - both essential as “built in” - I wouldn’t pay extra for either.
I’ve had Vera for about 8 years, it now forms part of my Home Assistant setup and works well. I used to have a VeraLite, but couldn’t run all the plugins I wanted. Ended up stripping them all out, and eventually upgraded to a VeraPlus. I have some scenes, but I’m in the process of migrating all the automations over to HA
I do not agree to pay, some do it for money, think that all work deserves salary, but in this case the paid plugins should work properly from the start without slowing down the machine since it is thought like a professional, then the result must be professional. But most of the time it is done on free time, for its own use at first and then it is shared with the rest of the users: why pay for the free time spent and the passion when it is for the community ? Me when I do a few things and I offer it it’s not to earn three cents in return, it’s because I want to share it and help when I can
I would pay for electricity. Any electricity company who offer IoT technology to lower the consumer electricity bill have my money. Its already starting to happen here (Norway) with a couple of electricity companies integrating IoT pretty heavy to their service. Being able to turn light on / off by your voice is cute, but its awesome when your Tessla (btw, the most sold car over here) starts charging automatically when electricity are at the cheapest.
I would’ve payed for google home integration, but if I was looking to buy a new platform today I’d expect it to be included. In the same vein, I would pay for any new function I want for my smart home that didn’t exist or was uncommon at the time I bought the product since my only other option would be a replacement (or just not having the feature of course).
The issue I have with a subscription model to fund ongoing development is that you have to keep paying for stuff you don’t want. If you’re lucky the features you want get developed, but if you’re unlucky you have to keep paying just for the privilege of using the product you already bought while all of your money goes into developing useless stuff. With a product like this I think there are far too many directions development could go for a subscription model. I’m sure someone will say “What if there’s a road map?”. The road map would have to span for way too long of a time to work in a space that is developing this quickly, you don’t want a new cool gadget to not be integrated for years just because it wasn’t in the road map.
When it comes to paying for specific apps/modules/integrations it’s always going to be a tightrope walk. You need to include the right features in the initial purchase to get the product off the shelf, but you want to sell as many of them as possible. This will also interfere with the community developed stuff since it would mean there is free/cheap competition to the first party stuff.
Any of these models, of course, would have to come with a significantly reduced unit price.
I’m happy to pay for additional work, and ongoing maintenance fees. If someone has to spend maintenance time because the Alexa API changed, I’ll pay a share to get it fixed. If it costs Vera to host remote connectivity, I’ll pay. Keeping up with security issues alone is worth a price.
But when I pay an ongoing fee, I expect the service to be a responsible owner, and part of that means being responsive to issues.
I’d also like to see some model of support for the most popular community plugins. MyQ is a perfect example. I like having the garage door integrated with Vera, but it would be nice if Ezlo picked up support for it, so I don’t have to be worried that some volunteer is what keeps the integration alive.
Perhaps a more robust App Store model for plugins, where the author gets a cut, and Ezlo gets a cut. Ezlo could offer to buy out the popular ones to support them. But the whole current MiOS App Store is not a shining system.
The reason I keep coming back to Vera is that the out-of-the-box usability is very high; it’s certainly much better than any of the open source offerings. It’s also nice that the community plug-in model is robust, and the random devices I tend to buy are usually supported. Perhaps the biggest positive is there is no vendor lock-in like there is with Apple, Google, Samsung, etc. If I had to start looking for “works with Vera” on my light switches, I wouldn’t spend another dime.
So if Ezlo wants to know why I spend money on Vera, that’s where to focus.
Nice reponse, well said.
Fully agree however like to add one remark
i would pay $200 if it worked at all … >SMiLE> I have been trying for nearly a month to get this thing stabilized at all. anyone interested in buying mine?
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