There is definitely something magical about leaving your house and having your lights shut off and your door lock automatically, then coming home after a long day and having your door unlock and lights come back on.
It's not such a drastic improvement or change, but it feels like attention to detail. IMO, reducing the number of things I have to think about on a daily basis to live my life is an improvement.
I can see how it would feel that way if one didn't know too much. Google home devices were caught with their microphones stuck open constantly uploading within weeks of release.
What makes you think you won't get a doorlock that gets stuck in an open/close loop and just oscillates, allowing a burglar to just stick their shoulder against the door and wait for the bolt to retract? Are you going to remember to check after every firmware update? Are you even going to know if a firmware update is issued?
Will it still be magical if you get declared a legacy customer and your door is programmed to unlock and stay unlocked? Will you even follow IoT news close enough to be confident that this hasn't happened to you?
Myself, I'd prefer a door lock that locks only when locked, and unlocks only when the correct key is inserted into it. I've /certainly/ seen one too many crazy software errors to believe in a stove that has the ability to turn itself on and off.
Door locks are security theater anyways. If someone really wants to rob you, it's not difficult to get into a house.
> Are you going to remember to check after every firmware update? Are you even going to know if a firmware update is issued?
No, for the same reason I don't check if my computer requires my specific password every time I log in. I'm not that paranoid.'
> Will it still be magical if you get declared a legacy customer and your door is programmed to unlock and stay unlocked?
That has never happened. Even in the example you cite, they caved and offered users a full refund.
> Myself, I'd prefer a door lock that locks only when locked, and unlocks only when the correct key is inserted into it. I've /certainly/ seen one too many crazy software errors to believe in a stove that has the ability to turn itself on and off.
Go for it. While you're at it, make sure you don't get a car that has a remote start or an unlocking keyfob, or a safe that unlocks with a code. Wouldn't want that scary technology near your locks.
That doesn't compute. If that's the case, then why pay for a smart doorlock? Just stop locking your door.
>That has never happened. Even in the example you cite, they caved and offered users a full refund.
They caved in and offered a full refund /for the hub/, which is the minority cost. No refunds on the compatible bulbs, thermostats, etc that it was made to work with.
>While you're at it, make sure you don't get a car that has a remote start or an unlocking keyfob, or a safe that unlocks with a code.
You're trying to be sarcastic and paint me as a luddite, but you don't know the domain you're opining about. You really /don't/ want a car with a remote start mate, they're already well broken and have been for years: https://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/16/style/keeping-your-car-sa...
Your insurance company might feel otherwise. Security theatre serves a purpose, but acting like a deadbolt is some amazing security measure is ridiculous.
> They caved in and offered a full refund /for the hub/, which is the minority cost. No refunds on the compatible bulbs, thermostats, etc that it was made to work with.
Which is why standards are good. Buy ZigBee bulbs and compatible items. Lack of standardization is common in all new industries. Taking one token example and using it to paint the entire concept as bad is also ridiculous.
> You're trying to be sarcastic and paint me as a luddite, but you don't know the domain you're opining about. You really /don't/ want a car with a remote start mate, they're already well broken and have been for years.
I'm well familiar with the issues with remote start. I'm also familiar with the ability that spark plug has to thwart a traditional key.
Once again, if you want to steal a car it's not hard. This is what I'm talking about. For some reason people insist on holding digital locks to this ridiculous standard, when we all know that 99% of consumer locks are intended to "keep honest people honest" and not to actually thwart a real criminal.
Digital/IoT locks meet and exceed that standard IMO. You're letting perfect be the enemy of good, and it does come off as luddite FUD. "I'm scared of this change and what it could do, so better to just stick with the devil I know."
The door refused to open. It said, “Five cents, please.”
He searched his pockets. No more coins; nothing. “I'll pay you tomorrow,” he told the door. Again he tried the knob. Again it remained locked tight. “What I pay you,” he informed it, “is in the nature of a gratuity; I don't have to pay you.”
“I think otherwise,” the door said. “Look in the purchase contract you signed when you bought this conapt.”
In his desk drawer he found the contract; since signing it he had found it necessary to refer to the document many times. Sure enough; payment to his door for opening and shutting constituted a mandatory fee. Not a tip.
“You discover I'm right,” the door said. It sounded smug.
From the drawer beside the sink Joe Chip got a stainless steel knife; with it he began systematically to unscrew the bolt assembly of his apt's money-gulping door.
“I'll sue you,” the door said as the first screw fell out.
— from Ubik, Philip K Dick, 1969
(Dick failed to foresee the convenient ability to have everything automatically debited from your Alexoori account. That, and the annual applobe variation so you can't unscrew your door with a knife.)
I call this “life UX,” and you’re exactly right about the way these small, subtle changes add up to surprisingly significant improvements.
One way or the other, for example, automated cars are coming. We can say "but trolleycar problem!" Sure, we need to worry about that! But, no matter how hard we gripe about all the problems and scary things about the new tech, it is coming. It will happen, because there is profit to be had there and it is more efficient than having humans drive and a million other reasons that more than overcome the obstacles.
So, an IoT lightswitch may not be as inevitable as self-driving cars, but IoT valve meters sure as heck are, or IoT lightswitches for an oil rig, or IoT smoke detectors... in fact, some of these might become legally required, once they get robust enough! (similar arguments have been made that it may become illegal to drive a non-autonomous car without lots of training/licensing)
So, people like you and me, that prefer zippos and straight razors and automatic watches over quartz watches and fountain pens and manual-transmission cars, we'll still be able to have our mechanical switches, we just won't live in a world where everyone wants those things.
If you find manually managing those things easier than the occasional firmware update and making sure you buy things from companies that are reasonably reputable and have decent security practice, then by all means stick with regular options.
People once groused about the complexity of fuel injection, too.
People have an annoyance. They think, "I know, I'll add more technology to my life." Now they have two annoyances.
Wait, in this scenario am I blind & deaf or something? Because I can see my lights turn off when I leave and turn on when I arrive. I can hear and see the lock close when I leave and hear and see it open when I return.
I'm definitely not saying IoT is perfect, but this argument is idiotic. I can also leave my lights on and forget to lock my house with a manual setup, both things I have done before as I'm sure we all have.
Honestly, for a community of users that is entirely focused on tech startups, this is a ludicrous amount of FUD.
I'd like houses to have something like central locking, like cars have had for ages. I just don't want it to depend on the Internet, except if I deliberately choose to connect it somehow.
I'd also like to be able to read my gas meter without having to change my clothes afterwards having fought my way through dense vegetation and spiders' webs and knelt down in the mud. But I don't want a "smart" meter connected to the Internet. I just want a local radio link to my own hardware.
Any chance I could have these things without having to build them myself?
80% of the comments in this entire thread are about the woes of connecting everything to the internet which is a fair concern but it's not like non internet connected equivalents haven't been available for decades.
Of course you don't. You'd have to be an idiot to believe that. So my main point, that technology makes shit more complicated with more failure potential, stands.