People often ask me about my vision for Home Assistant. Before I can describe where I want to go with Home Assistant, I should first talk about how home automation would look in my ideal world. This will be the aim of this post. I’m not going to focus on protocols, networks or specific hubs. That’s all implementation details. Instead, this post will focus on what is most important: the interaction between the users and their home.
When people start using home automation, they always experience home control first: being able to control devices in new ways using a phone or computer. They believe the future is now and their app will be their remote for their lives. They only focus on what they are getting, not on what they are losing. You install some light bulbs and all of a sudden you are no longer able to use the light switches. You’ll arrive at home at night and have to pull out your phone, open the app, let it connect and finally you’ll be able to turn on the light. All while turning the light on could have been a switch away.
Yes, you can solve this with presence detection. What if your phone runs out of battery? You’ll have to resort to the switch again.
If you find that using your new home devices is cumbersome, the promise of home automation technology has failed you. Your lights should work with both a switch (or button) at the entrance of your room and via presence detection. Honestly, there are hardly any valid use cases for being able to control lights from your phone except for showing off.Read on →
First release of 2016 and we are on 🔥! The main repository has passed 2500 ⭐ on GitHub (2596 ⭐ as of now). This release also has a record number of 20 contributors all working on improving and extending Home Assistant. With the continued growth, I am very excited to see what 2016 will bring us 🤘.
- MySensors revamped and switch support added (@MartinHjelmare)
- Full refactor of RPi GPIO. Now includes binary sensor and switch (@sfam)
- Sensor: [YR] platform added (@danielhiversen)
- Device Tracker: Geofancy platform has been renamed to Locative (@philipbl)
- Automation: Add sun condition (@philipbl)
- Switch: command_switch can now poll for state (@happyleavesaoc)
- Switch: wemo now uses subscription to states instead of polling (@pavoni)
- Telldus Live support added (@molobrakos)
- Vera now uses subscription to states instead of polling (@pavoni)
- New template helper method
is_state_attr(entity_id, name, value)added (@andythigpen)
- Device tracker: OwnTracks transition events now supported (@xifle)
- Light: Philips Hue platform now supports multiple hubs (@rhooper)
- Notify: Free Mobile platform added (@HydrelioxGitHub)
- New MQTT Eventstream component to connect two Home Assistant instances over MQTT (@moonshot)
- Media player: Cast huge stability improvements (@rmkraus)
- Media Player: Universal media player added to combine multiple media players (@rmkraus)
- Sensor: Netatmo platform added (@HydrelioxGitHub)
- Alarm Control Panel: [Alarm.com] platform added (@Xorso)
- Thermostat: Proliphix platform added (@sdague)
- New component input_boolean will allow for customizing automation (@balloob)
- Support calling services via Amazon Echo (@balloob)
Alrighty, it’s time for Home Assistant 0.10. A lot amazing things have changed and sadly we also had to introduce a bunch of backwards incompatible changes. I would like to give a big shoutout to Philip Lundrigan (@philipbl) who put a lot in effort in helping the migration to move towards using templates for a wide variety of platforms.
- Device tracker: iCloud platform added (@xorso, @kevinpanaro)
- Frontend: Improved caching using service workers if served over SSL (@balloob)
- Sensor: Twitch platform added (@happyleavesaoc)
- Template support (@balloob, @philipbl, @fabaff)
- Thermostat: Heatmiser platform added (@andylockran)
- Sensor: Dweet.io platform added (@fabaff)
- Alexa/Amazon echo component added (@balloob)
- Device Tracker: FritzBox platform added (@deisi, @caiuspb)
- Sensor: Wink now supports the Egg minders (@w1ll1am23)
- Sensor: ELIQ Online platform added (@molobrakos)
- Binary sensor: REST platform added (@fabaff)
- Sensor: Torque (OBD2) platform added (@happyleavesaoc)
Exposing your Home Assistant instance outside of your network always has been tricky. You have to set up port forwarding on your router and most likely add a dynamic DNS service to work around your ISP changing your IP. After this you would be able to use Home Assistant from anywhere but there is one big red flag: no encryption.
Read on →
You could also do this with the automation component instead so whenever you put your house to sleep mode for example your Android device will open up Google Play Books or the Kindle app ready for you to read as well as dimming your lights, but this tutorial is all about the switches.Read on →
It’s been a few weeks but we managed to polish a nice new release of Home Assistant for y’all!
- New lock component including Wink support (@miniconfig)
- New binary sensor component including aRest and MQTT support (@fabaff)
- New rollershutter component including MQTT support (@sfam)
- New InfluxDB component to store data in InfluxDB (@fabaff)
- Thermostat: Ecobee now supported (@nkgilley)
- Thermostat: Homematic now supported (@goir)
- Support for parsing JSON values received over MQTT (@mcdeck)
- Bunch of bug fixes and optimizations
To update, run
pip3 install --upgrade homeassistant.
From time to time we come along things that are worth sharing with fellow Home Assisters. Here a list of some cool stuff from last week:
First is the public beta of Let’s Encrypt. Let’s Encrypt is a new certificate authority that is free, automated and open. This means that it will now be very easy to secure your connection to Home Assistant while you are away from home. W1ll1am23 has written up a guide how to get started.
The next thing is a show-off of some of the cool stuff people do with Home Assistant. This is miniconfig talking to Home Assistant using the Amazon Echo!
And last but not least, Midwestern Mac did a microSD card performance comparison for the Raspberry Pi. If you’re using a Pi, make sure to check it out!
Around a week ago we started with the first survey. Now 30 people have participated. Thank you very much if you did. We think that’s enough time to have some “only partially representative” data. It’s hard to tell how many Home Assistant users are out there. Currently there are 215 members on our Discord chat server and last week PyPI counted 5063 downloads.
The idea was to anonymously collect some details about the usage of the different parts of Home Assistant and a little bit about the environment its running in.Read on →