Home Automation: To hub or not to hub? Part 2 – Integrations

One glaring problem with not using a hub is integrating with other brands or platforms. A hub such as Smartthings, Wink Hub, etc. allows you to tie in Z-Wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth, and other technologies with a single control point. I’ve found an easy way around this by creating a virtual hub of sorts using IFTTT.

IFTTT allows cross platform integration between hundreds of technologies. Below are some examples that I use with IFTTT.

During the summer months I have a time based trigger in the Smart Life app to turn on the smart plug connected to the window air conditioner in my bedroom. It turns the A/C on a couple of times during the night. Sometimes it got too cold so I created this IFTTT applet to allow me to say “Hey Google, kill the air conditioner” to turn the A/C off.

To accomplish this task I used the Google Assistant service along with the Smart Life service. I set a phrase of “Kill the air conditioner” as the trigger and for the action selected Turn Off then Air Conditioner as the target of the action. That’s it! Click save and in a minute or so give your new voice commands a try.

Similar simple applets I have in IFTTT allow me to turn on/off the kitchen under cabinet lights, living room lights, bedroom lights, etc.

It’s fun to browse the IFTTT website/app and browse the sample apps that other users have shared.

Check out part 3 for advanced integrations that include timers and multiple actions.

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