Homebridge setup made easy with HOOBS

On this episode of Crazy Will Tech Show, I show you Homebridge setup made easy with Hoobs. So this company contacted me to review a Homebridge out of the box. I was very sceptical, I mean Homebridge out of the box, Really? I tried user interfaces before and they didn’t really work out very well. Let’s see if Hoobs can deliver a user interface that makes it easy to log in, add plugs in, set up config file, and work easily with HomeKit.

Hoobs https://hoobs.org

HOOBS in a Box (Starter Kit) https://hoobs.org/product/hoobs-in-a-…

6 thoughts on “Homebridge setup made easy with HOOBS

  • 17th August 2019 at 10:52 pm

    The Hoobs device looks like it removed several steps from adding non Homekit devices to Homekit. Still not plug and play, but definitely easier. If users have to deal with code, that can scare them away.

    I’ve never added Homebridge because it looks like a lot of continuous effort for little payoff by putting up with lots of procedures and bugs. This definitely makes it easier to deal with. I may give this a shot, but the only devices I have that are not Homekit are my Nest systems. Of course I can just use my Nest app for that so I have to decide is this effort worth adding nest to Homekit.

    • 18th August 2019 at 7:39 pm

      I agree generally. I dabbled briefly with HomeBridge to get my Mi Air Purifier into HomeKit and after a lot of trial and error I managed to get it working, but now that Siri Shortcuts gives me a lot of the instant voice control, I found it wasn’t worth the effort. Now I have to think about how many devices I’ve got, or would like, that don’t work with HomeKit to see if it’s worth the cost. Currently, I’m struggling to think of anything essential. This out of the box solution does seem to make it all a lot more painless though.

  • 21st August 2019 at 6:02 am

    To me, homebridge it’s worth due to the amount of devices I have, around 15; and the fact I use different vendors.
    So Homekit, is the single platform where I have all of them.
    Nest Thermostat, Aqara gadgets, Ikea Tradfri, Devices availability (ping based plugin), Old ffmpeg cameras…

    I don’t like using 8 different applications to manage them, and homekit gives me the screen I need to have all of them in there.

    I use each individual application for fine tuning, or if homebridge fails, as a backup.

  • 23rd August 2019 at 2:51 pm

    If you want to electrify..:-) your roller blinds for excample, Homebridge is the only sensible way. The RF-controlled motors to put in excisting blind tubes cost in Aliexpress like 40-60 euros a piece, Broadlink RM hub for RF-signals costs some 30 euros and PI is around 60 (or Hoobs around 100). I have 8 blinds and one large sunshade and they all move with this setup not to mention that I can control multiple other things that are not Homekit compatible and never will be (somewhat older LG and Samsung TV-s, C&H and Cree Airconditioners, Yeelight products, IR set top boxes, RF water shut off valves etc.).

    • 24th August 2019 at 12:06 am

      Please can you explain how to do that with home bridge. I have the same situation as yo. I have the blinds and the Broadlink, but i couldn’t integrate it in hombridge.

  • 24th August 2019 at 5:17 pm

    Well, this forum space is limited in that sense I think but internet is filled with tutorials, believe me, I started with zero knowledge about Pi, Homebridge, coding, .json files etc. but managed to do that with not so much effort. All thanks to the internet.
    In short on the hardware side I use
    1. RaspberryPi
    2. Broaadlink RM pro
    3. Tubular motors with RF (433 MHz) suitable for your blind tube, if you type “tubular motor” into Aliexpress you will find a bunch of them.
    4. RF remotes to steer the motors and send the codes in order to teach them to Broadlink

    Download the homebridge-broadlink-rm plugin https://www.npmjs.com/package/homebridge-broadlink-rm. Study the documents. Assuming Broadlink is already in your home network once you start Homebridge with appropriate config.json file it is autodiscovered. config.json sample file can also be found there: https://github.com/lprhodes/homebridge-broadlink-rm/blob/master/config-sample.json
    You can remove all the accessories that you do not need and leave only “window covering”.
    For the data section you need the hex codes, for that you need the to see the Terminal window (assuming you have the monitor attached to Pi or you are running it through ssh from Mac). After starting Homebridge with Broadlink plugin the Scan Frequency and Learn buttons appear into Homekit. Learning RF codes can be tricky though, first press Scan Frequency, then hold the button you wish to learn down on the remote (if there is a led on the remote and it goes out some seconds after you hold the button, then release and push repeatedly) and keep an eye on the Terminal window. If the sentence “scanned frequency 1 of 2” (or smth like that) appears release the remote button, push the Learn button in Homekit and then push the button on the remote. Both Homekit buttons need to be active (they time out some after some 20 sec). This sequence works for me, if you do not get the above mentioned “scanned fr…” sentence and the Homekit button times out just repeat this step. If all is good you should see a string of numbers appear in Terminal window, copy and paste it into the config.json file. Repeat the process with all the buttons. Finally measure the time it takes the blind to close and open and insert that in seconds into the json file also. Restart Homebridge. Always run your json file through validator before starting Homebridge: https://jsonlint.com
    Hope it helps a little.

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