Smart Devices Mean Computer-Like Problems

Richard Lawler, Engadget:

[…] a number of users have a box “so secure that it is unable to connect to the Wink servers” (Wink’s words, not ours).

The problem? Expired certificates. You may ask, “Huh?!?” and that is exactly the point: start adding easy-to-use smart devices to your home and you’ll soon end up needing to hire an IT professional just to help fix them.

What’s Wink? According to Wink: “The Wink HUB allows your diverse collection of smart products to speak the same wireless language, so that you can easily control them — and customize their interactions — from the Wink app.”

Imagine you’ve installed the Nest Thermostat, a bunch of Philips Hue “personal wireless lighting” LED bulbs throughout your house, a couple of Canary home surveillance devices, and a few Aros smart window air conditioners. You didn’t want four separate apps to control these devices, so you got the Wink HUB and connected them all. It’s set up so when you’re coming back from a long day’s work, the temperature is set to your liking, and the lights turn to the color and brightness you like. You’re enjoying your smart device-enabled life, until the Wink HUB — and everything else — stops working.

I’ll wait, until there is a standard and secure operating system for these devices, a standard and secure communications protocol, and a financially solid company that will back up both hardware and software with consistent and frequent updates. And a quick, on-time, reliable in-person technical troubleshooting service.

I’m not holding my breath.