Refering to this Article:http://www.pcworld.com/reviews/article/0,aid,123856,00.asp
This article is lacking in some inportant information. It lacks in details including alternative solutions and common problems. Z-Wave is not perfect. This article makes it sound like it is. I have been a long time user of z-wave and I do like it and I would recommend it. However, the article fails to mention that the ACT Home Pro line of products have had many issue caused by manufacturing mistakes. For instance the hand held remotes are not z-wave compliant. Meaning that you could run into issues down the road with compatability. In fact I have already ran into a few issues with compatibility. How about the flaky usb controller that you tested by Home Pro. If you tested it with HomeSeer as you say you did then I am sure you have visited the site and read about the many users who experience connections issues.
You did mention Intermatic Home Settings line of products which was about the best thing that article portrayed. I think you should have included with that information the fact the intermatic is about to release their own USB Controller Q1 2006. This could be enough to make people wait for a 100% Z-Wave compliant controller. Also to go with that controller you did not mention the new Z-Wave SDK and the fact that you can pre-order the Intermatic Controller with the software developers kit for $49 from www.tech-home.com which is cheaper than buying an act USB Controller and would also get you into the ControlThink beta testing for the SDK.
Other software options should have been mentioned as well such as CharmedQuark.com which supports Z-wave in what I think is a better implementation then HomeSeer.
Before writing articles about Home Automation and related products please stop by www.cocoontech.com and interview some of the people that have actually been using the stuff for a much longer period of time. These are the experts and are the people who should be writing the reviews for these products. We would be happy to help as long as it means the truth will be revealed instead of a "rosey" depiction of a product which may have its flaws.
IMHO, its not the technology or protocol that is necessarily flaky, it is the environment. If it weren't for noise on the powerline I bet even X10 would be pretty darn reliable. And not to knock ZWave, but I'm willing to bet that if you produce enough RF interference on the same or near frequency to what ZWave uses, it would suffer just the same as a PLC technology.The biggest hurdle facing most home automation devices has been reliability: Because the technology underlying them is sometimes flaky, you can't count on many of the products to work properly 100 percent of the time. That appears to be changing, however, thanks to a new wireless radio technology from Zensys called Z-Wave. I tested several new products based on Z-Wave, and each performed as reliably as if I were flipping a light switch.
If not for the noise. And the signal sucking problem. And the inability of most devices to cope with multiple, simultaneous signals that cause collisions. And the one bit checksums that allow a 50/50 chance that an entirely new signal can result from a bit of corrupt data or a signal collision. And the inability of x10 to cross phases without assistance in large installs. And the transmission speed. And the device quality. Aside from that, x10 is probably just as reliable!Steve said: