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Author Topic: The Future of X10  (Read 109891 times)

Tuicemen

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #120 on: March 28, 2013, 10:33:16 AM »

There has been a few new Wi-Fi devices available for the HA setup.
I like the programmable Wi-Fi thermostats.
Most however require you to use their server to interact after the failure of X10s myhouse attempt at this I'm leery of using something like that.
Some say they'll offer a SDK but most likely after they suck everyone into getting their software/hardware combos.
However doing some research I found a free piece of software that will sniff out the packets these devices get and receive.
I've even found posted packets to send some led Wi-Fi lighting for ON/OFF and Bright/dims
The software? Wireshark
Will X10 get into Wi-Fi HA?
I sure hope so!
After all, lots of this stuff is coming out of China. rofl
 >!
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dhouston

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #121 on: March 28, 2013, 10:50:42 AM »

I've even found posted packets to send some led Wi-Fi lighting for ON/OFF and Bright/dims
The software? Wireshark
Will X10 get into Wi-Fi HA?

Thanks for the link. I saw some for hacking the Belkin API but they may be too esoteric.

AFAIK, Belkin doesn't require a dedicated hub but their offerings are limited - they lack dimmers. LIFX puts the WiFi receiver in their dimmable LED bulb but it then acts as a mesh network hub for additional bulbs. Hue requires a dedicated hub and is rather pricey. But, given all the activity, I suspect we'll start to see better offerings.

If X10 doesn't get into WiFi (or some other wireless protocol) they won't survive. PLC is doomed.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2013, 10:53:01 AM by dhouston »
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bs2000

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #122 on: May 09, 2013, 08:30:02 PM »

Ok it has been a long time since x10 update its software and had any real innovative things happening. Is x10 dead? never saw the 2nd QT 2012 software date....
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dave w

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #123 on: May 10, 2013, 01:17:40 PM »

Ok it has been a long time since x10 update its software and had any real innovative things happening. Is x10 dead?
Not yet, but the life support machines are making funny noises.
I agree with dhouston that PLC is doomed, but I do not think X10 has the resources to do anything about it. $0.02.
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JeffVolp

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #124 on: May 10, 2013, 07:49:41 PM »

I agree with dhouston that PLC is doomed, but I do not think X10 has the resources to do anything about it. $0.02.

The fact that X10 has finally added AGC to its newer switches and modules may be the transplant needed to give some extra life.  The Leviton switches we have here incorporate AGC, and have worked extremely well since I installed them a decade ago.  Only that Lumoform 4W LED light that pumps out almost 2Vpp near 120KHz caused problems for the nearby Leviton X10 switch.

Jeff
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HA Dave

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #125 on: May 10, 2013, 10:29:44 PM »

I agree with dhouston that PLC is doomed.....

Doomed.... can take a very long time. I'd guess for many of us regulars here at the forum.... we will have many modules that last longer than ourselves.
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dave w

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #126 on: May 11, 2013, 10:57:46 AM »

Doomed.... can take a very long time.  
Yes. Like I said I think X10 is on life support. The X10 problem I see is "newbie frustration" when they buy new CM15A and AHP, when they can get it, with (new) modules and things don't work. X10.com insinuates all one has to do is plug stuff in and instant automation abounds.
Really, this forum is the main way a newbie finds out why modules do not respond. Even the WiKi's do a lot of tip toeing and glossing over.
As Jeff points out, the AGC addition helps with noise problems, But hasn't been the silver bullet, based on forum requests for help. Also leaves phase coupling relativly unaddressed "Why does only one of my three new 'wireless doorbell' chimes work?".

My perception is X10 isn't getting many "new" customers in the automation field (no growth). Hence I think X10 PLC sales is mainly to existing users (the life support).

PLC is saveable, but I just don't see X10 having the development/design resources to pull it off. Besides they would likely have to step on Insteon patents.

Saying this a different way: If X10 were to do an IPO tomorrow, how many of us would be in line to buy stock? $0.02.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2013, 11:08:14 AM by dave w »
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JeffVolp

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #127 on: May 11, 2013, 11:42:24 AM »

As Jeff points out, the AGC addition helps with noise problems, But hasn't been the silver bullet, based on forum requests for help. Also leaves phase coupling relativly unaddressed "Why does only one of my three new 'wireless doorbell' chimes work?".

Most X10 problems are due to weak signal levels or powerline noise.  AGC should help with powerline noise, but it can  exacerbate the signal level problem.

I'd be happy to help X10 with the signal level problem if they care to contact me.

Phase coupling is indeed a problem, and X10 should offer some sort of simple plug-in phase coupler.  It could plug into a high-current 240V receptacle like the discontinued SmartHome units, or it could be a simple RF link between modules plugged into both phases.

Noise was the real killer with the proliferation of CFLs, LED lights, and modular power supplies.  At least that issue is being dealt with.

Jeff
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Brian H

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #128 on: May 11, 2013, 11:48:07 AM »

As usual. No X10 model number changes or updated manuals.
End users again have to point out changes.  >*<
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dhouston

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #129 on: May 11, 2013, 11:57:04 AM »

I'd be happy to help X10 with the signal level problem if they care to contact me.
But how much cost would it add to their devices?

...or it could be a simple RF link between modules plugged into both phases.
That's easier outside of N. America. RF power allowed in Europe (433.92MHz) is about 10 times FCC limits while other areas (e.g. Australia) allow even more. Given the poor range exhibited by most X10 RF devices, I doubt they would spend the money to allow adequate range.
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mike

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #130 on: May 11, 2013, 12:39:48 PM »

r there enough of us diehards left to support a Dhouston & JeffV replacement/improved pieces store?   I for one rely on my X10's at 3 locations across town to imform me if there is a security problem.  Would I spend $ 1000 on stuff in next year?  no, so maybe my question is just plain dumb if there are not enough of us $ 150/yr cheap folks left?    I do use ihouse at one of these locations also as a supplement.   the range & noise & consistency issues are always still there with most X10...  Security is 100% for me but only by bypassing the range & noise issues by almost hardwiring the various sensors to within 5 feet of the DS unit....  if these wre not issues I would add more buildings to the mix....

 just puttin' the though out there.....
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JeffVolp

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #131 on: May 11, 2013, 02:13:39 PM »

I'd be happy to help X10 with the signal level problem if they care to contact me.
But how much cost would it add to their devices?

Not much in high volume - a beefier power supply, high-current MOSFET, and big inductors and capacitors in the output stage.

...or it could be a simple RF link between modules plugged into both phases.
That's easier outside of N. America. RF power allowed in Europe (433.92MHz) is about 10 times FCC limits while other areas (e.g. Australia) allow even more. Given the poor range exhibited by most X10 RF devices, I doubt they would spend the money to allow adequate range.

Not much range is needed to relay a command between two AC receptacles on different phases.  The typical range of a motion detector should be sufficient.  The receiving module would use the RF input to trigger a high-power PLC output on the opposite phase..

Jeff
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HA Dave

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #132 on: May 12, 2013, 12:28:44 AM »

..... The X10 problem I see is "newbie frustration" when they buy new CM15A and AHP, when they can get it, with (new) modules and things don't work. X10.com insinuates all one has to do is plug stuff in and instant automation abounds.

That's it! But... even with the no-tools-required cable company home automation installs... people aren't interested. Or... better stated "enough people" aren't interested. The things that CAN be done with home automation are simply amazing. But selling the products to do those amazing things... in enough volume and at a high enough price to make a profit... ain't no easy accomplishment.

When people talk about time and effort saving automation today... they are talking about apps that run on their phones. I think todays average contemporary home owner is more comfortable with downloading a phone app... than rewiring a light switch. But... that doesn't explain why the cable company isn't finding any real success at selling home automation.

I installed motion sensor light switches from the local home improvement store in the garage and laundry room years ago. I could add a few more of those and some old-fashioned timers on a few lights... and get a lot of automation for nearly nothing (and almost NO effort). Maybe that's what people are doings.... and looking at apps for bells and whistles.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2013, 12:32:00 AM by HA Dave »
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JeffVolp

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #133 on: May 12, 2013, 10:23:31 AM »

When people talk about time and effort saving automation today... they are talking about apps that run on their phones. I think todays average contemporary home owner is more comfortable with downloading a phone app... than rewiring a light switch. But... that doesn't explain why the cable company isn't finding any real success at selling home automation.

Technology was a new thing to most people back in the 70ís when home automation was introduced.  We were landing on the moon, and many people were interested in science.  There were no home computers, VCRs, or cell phones.  So automation was a way for the technologically inclined to dive into the new world.

Now pretty much every kid has a cellphone.  His quest for technology is satisfied by downloading another app or buying the next hot computer game.  While home automation can be useful, it takes some work.  How many kids today can even change a light switch?  If you watch the H&G channel, most couples buying homes don't even want to paint a room.

Jeff
« Last Edit: May 12, 2013, 10:31:07 AM by JeffVolp »
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pomonabill221

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Re: The Future of X10
« Reply #134 on: May 12, 2013, 04:02:36 PM »

I agree... it is SAD that kids today don't have a CLUE as to how to do simple repairs.
If they can't push a button, download an app, twist a knob, talk to a phone (or text), they are lost!
These primary and necessary skills have long gone from our education system... no more shop classes and if you have any kind of interest in learning, you have to pay a huge amount to go to a "vocational" school!
And repairing / troubleshooting skills???? Well NOW you are asking too much!

Sorry to get off topic, but I just had to add my .02!
Sad situation!  Wonder what the future holds?!?!?!?
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