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Lowe's now entering into Home Automation


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#1 Work2Play

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 09:58 AM

As we all know, Home Automation is turning into the next big thing - for security, convenience, energy management, etc. Especially with the increasing popularity of SmartPhones - people want an app for everything, including managing their house. And EVERYONE wants a piece of the action. We're seeing ISP's, Alarm Companies, and everyone in between trying to get their piece. Now it's the neighborhood hardware store.

I just came across a new system being offered by Lowe's called Iris. They have motion, door/window contacts, an all-in-one keypad/siren for security, outlet modules to turn outlets on/off, controllable outlet receptacles, on/off, dimmer and 3-way switches, Cameras, and a keyfob. The switches are made by GE - I haven't seen yet if they're using a standard like zigbee or z-wave.

http://www.lowes.com..._1337707661000_

Given the super low cost and the fact that the motions are straight PIR (no dual-tech or pet immunity) and the overall "cheapness" of the system, it reminds me of the X10 security systems and the like.

The system does seem very affordable - so I'm wondering what technology it uses, and if we can use the components in a real HA system. It's hard to beat $35 for a receptacle when a UPB one costs $75; or $30 for an appliance module when a UPB one costs about $70. And the Iris appliance module also monitors energy consumption for an added bonus.

Edit: Instead of being post-happy, I should finish my research. Apparently the GE switches are Z-Wave and the door/window sensors are Zigbee (by AlertMe.com). I'm still looking to see if anyone has successfully integrated these with any other systems, but apparently they're still quite hard to come by.

#2 JonW

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 12:17 PM

The product is just a rebranding of the UK based AlertMe system which I believe is all ZigBee based. I didn't see any reference to Zwave products for AlertMe. Obviously, that could have been added though as having Lowes distribute this through all their stores probably puts them in the drivers seat in terms of product direction.

#3 Neurorad

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 01:37 PM

brief discussion of this at RC forum

http://www.remotecen...8686&highlight=

#4 JonW

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 02:29 PM

I read the CI Lounge forum there sometimes as a source of entertainment. :wacko:

#5 az1324

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 03:04 PM

Iris takes advantage of multiple well-proven technologies: Z-wave, ZigBee and WiFi.


So the gateway is also made by AlertMe but has the dual radios and is powered by an ARM9.

Get a feel for it here: http://www.lowes.com..._1339427453484_

AllThingsD Video Review: http://www.ustream.t...corded/24580222

Edited by az1324, 16 August 2012 - 03:36 PM.


#6 drvnbysound

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 05:34 AM

As we all know, Home Automation is turning into the next big thing - for security, convenience, energy management, etc. Especially with the increasing popularity of SmartPhones - people want an app for everything, including managing their house. And EVERYONE wants a piece of the action. We're seeing ISP's, Alarm Companies, and everyone in between trying to get their piece. Now it's the neighborhood hardware store.

I just came across a new system being offered by Lowe's called Iris. They have motion, door/window contacts, an all-in-one keypad/siren for security, outlet modules to turn outlets on/off, controllable outlet receptacles, on/off, dimmer and 3-way switches, Cameras, and a keyfob. The switches are made by GE - I haven't seen yet if they're using a standard like zigbee or z-wave.

http://www.lowes.com..._1337707661000_

Given the super low cost and the fact that the motions are straight PIR (no dual-tech or pet immunity) and the overall "cheapness" of the system, it reminds me of the X10 security systems and the like.

The system does seem very affordable - so I'm wondering what technology it uses, and if we can use the components in a real HA system. It's hard to beat $35 for a receptacle when a UPB one costs $75; or $30 for an appliance module when a UPB one costs about $70. And the Iris appliance module also monitors energy consumption for an added bonus.

Edit: Instead of being post-happy, I should finish my research. Apparently the GE switches are Z-Wave and the door/window sensors are Zigbee (by AlertMe.com). I'm still looking to see if anyone has successfully integrated these with any other systems, but apparently they're still quite hard to come by.


I am not yet convinced that the GE dimmers and switches are Z-Wave. Not that GE couldn't have changed model numbers, but they are different that the ones I purchased from Radio Shack about a year ago. The dimmer listed on the Lowe's site has a model # of: 45639, whereas my dimmer is a 45606. I also don't follow why the Lowe's site information states that the dimmer, "Requires Iris Smart Hub," other than possibly marketing for the rest of the products.

#7 Frunple

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 07:31 AM

I am not yet convinced that the GE dimmers and switches are Z-Wave.


Even though they have the zwave symbol on them?? Look carefully at the outlet and you can see it plain as day.

#8 DELInstallations

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 08:09 AM

Yuck.

People aren' t necessarily looking for a way to manage their house remotely, it's more of turning all of these systems (automation, security, etc.) into a plaything to be played with their smartphone, tablet, pc, etc.

#9 drvnbysound

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 03:02 PM

Even though they have the zwave symbol on them?? Look carefully at the outlet and you can see it plain as day.


Ahh... and that looks just like the receptacle I have (I only looked at the dimmer and the switch). I guess I just don't understand why they put things like, "This product requires the IRIS system" in the product description when it's obviously not true if it's Z-Wave.

Edited by drvnbysound, 17 August 2012 - 03:03 PM.


#10 Work2Play

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 04:18 PM

I just hope they didn't cripple some normal functionality to make it easier for Iris; I was reading a page where someone was trying to pair Iris products with a vera without much luck... but I couldn't find a lot of details on it.

#11 Teken

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 08:54 PM

There are some basic problems with these devices. Such as none standard CR2 batteries, motion sensor can not be set for night mode. Surprisingly quite a few items are simply re badged items such as the power monitor from Blue Planet. I do however like the controlled outlet which is an amazing deal at $35.00.

In terms of security: FAIL

These type of wireless alarm system are for people who simply don't know any better, or worse, just cheap aszz's. At the end of the day people get what they pay for. In terms of how it will affect the whole HA industry, I am all for it.

Competition no matter how small always fosters growth, new ideas, and drives down prices across the board.

Teken . . .

#12 az1324

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 09:02 PM

I just hope they didn't cripple some normal functionality to make it easier for Iris; I was reading a page where someone was trying to pair Iris products with a vera without much luck... but I couldn't find a lot of details on it.


That's because they were trying to pair the Iris products which are zigbee devices with vera. I don't think anyone tried the GE products which are the only ones that are z-wave.

Edited by az1324, 17 August 2012 - 09:03 PM.


#13 Frunple

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 08:15 AM

That's because they were trying to pair the Iris products which are zigbee devices with vera. I don't think anyone tried the GE products which are the only ones that are z-wave.


I hope that's right cuz I want some of the outlets. One thing I missed from the Job Lots sale.

Edited by Frunple, 18 August 2012 - 08:15 AM.


#14 ellisr63

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 11:48 AM

Does anyone know if it will work with insteon or UPB?

#15 Work2Play

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 12:34 PM

Not sure I'm following - work with insteon or UPB how? These are zigbee and z-wave devices; they won't interfere with UPB or insteon, but they won't talk to them either without something to bridge them together.




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