How Does Your Smart Home Communicate With You?

Are you someone that likes to have your home speak to you? What is your home telling you and how is it getting in touch with you? Are you experiencing any communication breakdown in your relationship?

Ok, jokes aside, obviously I'm curious to hear about the methods people are using to receive notifications from their HE setup. Use of TTS, smart speakers, notifications sent to mobile devices, use of lighting for alerts, etc.

Aside from Hubitat's mobile app, platforms like Pushover, Tasker, email to SMS, and other locally hosted options are popular. It would be good to hear about what people are using.

Some of the more obscure features like actionable notifications would also be interesting to explore.

Aside from some recent chat about these topics, this also plays into my development of a Tasker-based app that includes notifications as one of the features I am keen to develop. So am happy for any free input to my project :slight_smile:

I use webcore for the majority of my communication with my system. I also use the HD+ app for many notifications/tasks. TTS and SMS are usually to my phone and/or through any of my multiple Echo devices. But the bulk of my daily interaction with my system is through webcore/Alexa.


I use Pushover, but wish other options, such as just having HE more easily email or text me, were available. I use an iPhone, so sadly, Tasker won't help. Good luck with the app, though.

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The system notifications I get are things like "Activity detected in garage", "Back door opened", or "Temperature in lower attic is approaching freezing" at times when I wouldn't expect these things to be happening, or definitely should not be happening. Spoken through my Google Home/Nest Audio devices, as well as notifications through the Hubitat Mobile app. Alerts or warnings pretty much - not general feedback. I also control things by voice through those same devices.

No voice control here. Ecolink chime siren. I also wish SMS was possible, but sadly, for me, not to be, apparently. Pushover is good though.

I also use webCoRE for most automations, so I use it to email me. Also, in some instances, webCoRE initiates Hubitat Notifications function too. I also use webCoRE with my (12) Echo devices and Echo Speaks for a few interactions.

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I’m just using HE app (on our iPhones) and some lighting notifications right now.

For me I don’t want to deal with seething up an external system and I don’t want anything cloud involved. That’s the only reason I haven’t tried anything else.

For things I really need to do something about (e.g., shed door left open) Amazon Echo announcement and text message. For mail arrived, change led color on family room Inovelli switch and echo announcement. Everything else, no communication.

I also use Pushover for written messages and Alexa for speech but really would like a more private speech setup without Alexa or Google.

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Anything that is urgent a dome siren goes off and texts are sent to the wife, and I, cell phones though the Hubitat app. Also, we can display a dashboard that has all the variables of the conditions we alert for. Also I have LANnouncer running on a old Android phone for local TTS that announces though my intercom system. Right now, we are doing alerts for:

  • Too hot in house
  • Too cold in house
  • Water leak detection
  • Battery low conditions

I used to also alert for device offline but after a while we decided that wall switches and bulbs wasn't important enough to alert on say when you are at Church or other public gathering. But offline devices now are really few and far between maybe once a year when a breaker pops and a switch drops.

Alexa announcements and HE notifications to my iPhone pretty much take care of everything I want or need. Visitors are always impressed when Alexa informs me that " A vehicle has entered the driveway" lol.

Pushover for all text notifications, Samsung speakers for voice notifications as well as barking dogs when we are away and outside motion triggers, Amazon speakers announcing when doors open.

Voice notifications are for HSM alarms, weather conditions, and outside camera's detecting motion.

Telegram messages to my phone.

General status:

  • If I want to know I'll look at the hub web page or a hub dashboard. :wink:

For below I get Google Home/Nest announcements, and texts:

  • Contact events (garage, electric panel, outside sheds, doors to outside, outside gates to yard, etc.):
    -- When opened
    -- Contact reports open 5m, 10m, 20m & every 2 hrs depending on how important I think it is to be reminded the contact is open.
  • When any of a set of doors/windows are open when start good night routine (and also turns on an indicatory light)
  • If I turn on whole house fan and don't have windows/doors open to allow air flow (fan also get turned back off)
  • Irrigation leaks detected by Flume
  • House leak events
  • Water softener low salt (leak detector hits water as the salt level lowers)
  • Washer/dryer done (plug w/power monitoring)
  • Refrig/freezer (main and secondary) left open
  • Reminder to take out the trash, and whether recycling goes out as well
  • Either of our cars arrive home (car-based)
  • Either of us leave or arrive home (phone based)

Hadn't thought about this for a while, that's a lot.

I get all of the texts, my wife doesn't want those, but likes the GH announcements. These types of warnings/reminders are one of the few areas of HA that my wife really likes, as I am have been an incredibly forgetful person all my life. Her favorite is probably the laundry annouce, as she hates to leave wet clothes in the washer. :slight_smile:

Everything is near 100% automated (C7 + C8Pro + HA)
but everything has manual controls in case all/any hubs quits.
No Voice Control at all.
Very minimal Buttons/Remotes usage but they do exist.
Messages and Voice Announcements are only for very critical events
(such as water leak, etc.)

I use Echo Speaks to notify us if a person, vehicle or package has been detected by one of our Unifi cameras. Nearby lightning detected by the Tempest weather station in case one of us is working outside or in the pool (there's an Echo device on the patio), when rain is detected, because my wife has a habit of leaving her car windows open, and low battery notifications for the few battery powered things we have.

Pushover for a few things that I want to be notified immediately about, such as motion detected in our vacation house during the winter.

Critical things like smoke, fire and leak detection are handled through our alarm system and the associated phone app.

Shortly in the future Neuralink, no devices needed just beamed into your brain. :thinking:


So to take this a step further... how do you configure your smart home to send a notification using the notification platform you call out..... Are you using Rule Machine or other apps to send a notification....?

Perhaps I'm the only one thinking along these lines, but always imagined it would be sweet if my home automation setup could somehow include a MIDI music player. Like, instead of being told "The front door is unlocked", hearing a nice C# minor vamp played on my Sonos. :smiley:

I see only one other person has mentioned wanting to incorporate MIDI, and their thread went nowhere. Trouble is, because MIDI predates lots of other digital communication technologies (I first heard about it 40+ years ago from an old pen pal of mine, Robert Moog, a couple of years before purchasing my first FM synth), later adaptations sometimes felt kludgy or difficult to implement (thinking: early PC serial adapters, and much later, USB dongles).

Has MIDI carried over into the realm of smart speakers and WiFi? Anyone got a music-enabled setup tied into Hubitat?

I'm still the proud owner of a Yamaha CX5M (I and II) Music Computer, manufactured by MSX (a Japanese computer company then in partnership with Microsoft), for which the MIDI interface looked like a gigantic Nintendo game cartridge, occupying a good chunk of the chassis' I/O plane.

Surely somewhere is a MIDI-enabled device that speaks IP "networkese" by now?

Yes, you’re the only one.

Personally, I’ve decided this solution is superior to all others:

WAF has never been higher.