Android/iOS App Status?


#1

Ok so I have been lurking on here for a while and I get the feeling this is sort of a sore subject, but seriously, is there ever going to be an official Android/iOS app for Hubitat?

I just ordered a Hubitat, and as many other people say, I'm technical enough to be cool with using the dashboard via a browser on a mobile device but others in my family may struggle with it. I'm coming from Wink, and would like to convert my parents over to Hubitat too. But let's face it, having an app is table stakes these days and Hubitat must be working on it, right??

I know I know, there's Alexa and Google integration, and that's great and it helps, but seriously there needs to be an app. I don't understand the reluctance to just develop an app, even if it's basic and limited functionality initially. I guess maybe the developers feel Hubitat is not at the point that it can be used by the average person? Like having an app would open the floodgates?


#2

When It's Done™ :grin:


#3

Welcome. The mobile apps have been /are in development and I'm sure will be coming soon. It was actually accidentally released into the wild a few months ago. There isn't any reluctance to develop an app.


#4

Awesome, that's good to hear. I can be patient, just good to know that it's actually being worked on. There seemed to be a lot of silence surrounding availability of apps.


#5

I gather that the app is predominately being tailored for notifications and presence, with likely some control features added as well.

I will say though, after spending some time reading about how folks here approach their automations, it made me realise that the biggest win is having the house smart in a way that you don't need to 'control' it much at all anyway. Regardless of there being an app/dashboard/voice control available.


#6

I'm on my 3rd different smart home platform with Hubitat, and I have to say their model is far superior by getting the automation's perfected first and worrying about an app last....I have far less need for an app to manually switch a device on/off, when the automation's actually reliably work when you actually want them to. That's actually the "purpose" of home automation, is to be automated, and not necessary for constant manual adjustments from an app.


#7

Yup I totally get that too, if things are truly automated you don't need to fiddle around in the app. But there's times you just want to pop in and see the status of some things, or override something that did or didn't happen. (Yes of course the dashboard serves that purpose....but you know, wife acceptance factor etc. etc.)

I never got into much automation with Wink because of the limited device support, so that's one thing I'm really looking forward to with Hubitat is being able to purchase better sensors and take full advantage of them.


#8

Ok, so say the app existed, You'd have a button on the home screen of your phone or tablet that opens up a page that allows control of Hubitat. With a shortcut to the dashboard page you've already got exactly that. If your family insists on an app, set up a shortcut to the dashboard and tell them it's an app. Functionally it's identical.


#9

True, I used the leaked app and it is an app with a shortcut inside to your dashboards, and the presence map and notifications settings. Creating the shortcut in the smartphone to the dashboard is the same, one less click by the way..


#10

An "app" pretty much goes against what the Hubitat is designed for (imho). Hubitat is meant to be a local solution for home automation that can (and does) work without a cloud connection. It's meant to be a secure, home automation solution.

An app is basically just a dashboard with a wrapper that adds notification and presence. The control scheme is still going to be the same. Administration will only happen from the local network and control will be through Dashboards.


#11

Just chiming in with others here. When we were on ST the app was really required because the home automations were not reliable to trust they happened. Lights wouldn’t go off, ST alarm would be in a hung state because someone tripped it earlier and didn’t reset it, locks wouldn’t lock reliably, etc. So we used the ST app extensively BECAUSE the home was not reliable.

Now that isn’t true on HE. With over 90% of the web interface for HE designed for the admin of the home and the last 10% for external access (dashboards and MakerAPI). There is no need for my Wife and kiddos to have access to the administration stuff and honestly they do not care about how to configure things.

What my wife wants is the ability to quickly see that doors are locked/closed, furnace is off/away mode and that the HSM armed. Outside of that she has no need for any of the other functionality. The house is automated to where lights turn on/off based on motion and presence. So wifey has no worries that lights are on/off. The only app she would like access to is the Lock Code Manager as she does like the ability to add/enable/disable ppl from access to our home. Also, Alexa/GH/Siri; yes we use all three as I still can’t decide between GH/Siri or Alexa/Siri, are rock solid to turn on TV and adjust ceiling fan controls which are the only user initiated tasks in the home. As you can see if you design your home with the house should just work then realistically an app isn’t needed for end-user control/access.

When the app does come out we would be happy with just the dashboards (which we use today), presence (which we use locative for) and lock code manager. No need for an overly complicated app as the home is reliable to do the automations it is being requested to do.


#12

My wife is the complete opposite. She could care less about having to look at an app or anything if she doesn't have to. All she has to do is ask Alexa for a status report and Alexa tells her what's locked/unlocked or opened and/or closed.

Home automation that just works is a beautiful thing. Granted, she keeps me busy building all the interfaces and such for her to speak to, but she's happy, so my WAF is high. :smiley:


#13

How are you doing a summary with Alexa? Very interested to learn. Also, my wife’s needs are only when she is away from the home and she tends to be discrete and never uses a voice AI in public. Hence the need for an “app.”


#14

NodeRed. :slight_smile:

She can say "Alexa, turn on status report" from any speaker and it will output the report. Weird syntax, I know, but she's OK with that.


#15

I'm thinking the same thing.

If the app that is released is just a wrapper around the dashboard (with push/presence integrated) I'm starting to wonder how people are going to react.

I'm starting to feel the app that people are expecting is not the app that we may get. This is all speculation based on leaks and things I've read on the forum.

I'd personally be happy if the app launched the proper dashboard (cloud/lan based on your location) as well as had push and presence (do both geo and lan for reliability) only.

Hub management I'm good with keeping off the cloud as is.


#16

Well I'm glad I kicked off some healthy discussion about this :slight_smile:

I'm not sure what others are expecting for the app, but to me the dashboard wrapper with push/presence sounds just fine. I get that creating a shortcut blah blah blah is basically the "same" as an app but it's just the semantics of it. You buy a 'smart home' product in 2019 and it damn well better have an app, that's just how it is. You shouldn't have to piece together a solution with shortcuts and 3rd party bandaids connecting it together.

I'm totally fine with the heavy lifting, so to speak, being done elsewhere, as far as adding devices and rules and all that. That's how it should be. That's one obnoxious thing about Wink is that it's the opposite, everything must be done via the app and it's clunky as hell in that regard.


#17

I hear you. I disagree, but I hear you.

I have zero need for an app, and unless presence detection works significantly better than Life 360 (which I used long before I had Hubitat) I would have zero need or use for it.

I know I'm not alone in not needing an app, or even caring if Hubitat makes one... But there is a segment of the market that wants/expects one.


#18

Just my $0.02

Yes, some users have great home automation which reduces the need for controlling devices from an app or dashboard, but I would say the majority of users have more of a smart home than an automated home and thus rely more heavily on an app or a dashboard.

Personally I prefer an app. It's faster to access all the relevant stuff than going to a browser and it's usually designed with visual aesthetics in mind so it usually looks better as well. Having an app in no way hinders those who don't find it necessary to use one, but in 2019 having a good app is a necessity. Heck, Coca-Cola has an app...why? Because it's 2019 lol.

So I say full speed ahead on getting the app launched!


#19

An app is not faster than going to a shortcut to a dashboard, though. It is literally one press to open my dashboard on my phone. You can't get faster than that.

Again, it's fine if you want an app. But let's not pretend it's faster than a dashboard shortcut.


#20

Not to be technical, but your one press launches a browser which goes to a website. With an app, I can have a shortcut to the app on my home screen. One press opens the app and I'm done. No opening another app then opening a website.