cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

How does Vera compare?

Frequent Contributor

Re: How does Vera compare?

Hey Josh, glad your still here. Any chance you could release partial results, like maybe just those items confirmed, and / or what other devices you will be checking?

Rookie

Re: How does Vera compare?

For those of you researching different platforms/systems to replace your Iris...

 

I actually did a lot of research on this, and came across a lot of platforms, like Abode, Iota, SmartThings, etc.  I was NOT AT ALL impressed with the customer support for those companies, IF I got someone on the phone in support!  Those that I did speak with seemed to be bothered by my call.  Now, I did tech support for a software company for 14 years, and that is NOT the way to assist customers looking at purchasing your product!

 

I did contact GetVera (Vera) and I was sincerely impressed with the knowledge and support I got from them!  I spoke with one representative, Jonatan, who was very helpful and helped me immensely with answering my questions, and making sure that I understood his answers.  After I hung up with him, I did some more research, and Vera seemed to have outstanding reviews, from what I found.  I called Jonatan back, and spoke with him, and he assisted me in placing my order for the system.

 

Based on my research, and the minimum of devices that I had with my Iris system, although Vera was offering different bundles at a reduced rate for Iris customers, I decided on the VeraPlus controller (the brains) https://getvera.com/controllers/ , and a Vera VistaCam 700 https://getvera.com/portfolio-posts/vera-vistacam-700/ to fit my needs, since I had Z-Wave and ZigBee devices, and the basic VeraEdge really couldn't handle those.  My order was shipped out and I just received my package today.


Here is what I wrote to Jonatan regarding the install:

  • Took me about 3 hours total, between running up and down stairs, mainly for the camera.

  •  

    I initially set up the First Alert Smoke and CO detector to pair, then worked on the 2 First Alert Smoke detectors (the ZSMOKE ones). These were a bit of a pain; I had to select the Generic Z-Wave device in the Device Wizard, then had to go to select mode, then sync and get the light flashing, the insert the batteries into the smoke detector to pair, then go through the process of naming them and assigning to room, etc.

     

  • After getting those paired, I tried to get my ZigBee water/flood sensor to pair, I could not get that one to pair AT ALL!

    Then, upstairs to do the Vista Cam 700. Following the instructions for both methods, wired and wireless, the image would not come up to show that it was paired. However, after getting out of the Device Wizard, the camera was showing as added, so all I had to do was assign a room, etc.

     

  • Lastly, I was able to pair the UtiliTech flood sensor (Z-Wave, using the same process as I did for the 2 plain smoke detectors). However, that sensor is a bit touchy when trying to pair it, and I had to work with it to get it to pair, which was the same as the Iris system.

  • I was unable to pair the Iris Flood (water) sensor puck, although I tried and tried.  I went ahead and purchased the Fibaro Flood Sensor puck, which sets on the floor and detects any water on the floor.
  • I also couldn't pair the Iris camera, nor the Range Extender.  Vera MAY possibly be able to incorporate that, but, at this time they don't pair.

NOTE:  I must say that the main concern that I have is that I have a woodstove which we use for heating, and need to monitor our laundry room, which is where our water enters the house and goes to the pressure bladder tank, as that we have well water, and in the event that a clothes washer line breaks, or a PVC pipe breaks in the room, I want to be notifed if no one is home.

 

Overall, I am very happy with the Vera system, albeit I've only had it up and running for a couple of hours.  Set up is easy, paring is relatively easy (the plain First Alert smoke detectors did take some time, and they reflect BOTH a CO and smoke detector, but they work!).  Ran a test on the smoke detectors and got an almost immediate message that an alarm had gone off in my home, and then, when I canceled the alarm, another message that it had been canceled.

 

At this point, I'm very happy with what I spent, and used my Iris redemption card to pay for it!  If anyone does have any questions, feel free to reply to this and I'll check back in occasionally to see and reply.

 

One thing that Jonatan did say was that Vera is working to get a GoogleDrive or Dropbox type connection to record any video when the camera (also has a motion detector, unlike the Iris cam I had) is armed.  He also stated a few more things in the works that should be out later this year, once they are refined.

 

BUT, the nice thing is that there isn't any charge for self monitoring your home!


Hope that helps!

 

Ted

 

 

Frequent Contributor

Re: How does Vera compare?

I was waiting to comment on this until I got mine up and running, but given your comments I wanted to throw my experience out there also.  I emailed their support probably within a week of Iris announcing they were shutting down.  I just wanted to learn more about the system, how much is support, satisfaction gaurantee, etc.  I was shocked to actually have a response in only a few hours!  I've never gotten support from any company like that.  I responded with additional questions and again, they responded in only a few hours.

 

I was impressed with their service, but still on the fence of which route to go.  After more research, the discounts, and my experience thus far with them, I ordered a Vera Plus also.  Before I buy additional devices I was going to see what all I could transfer over.

 

Just some additional advice for those switching over, there are ways to keep Iris cameras working on Vera but it's a bit complicated and takes some research.  Basically, you can use a program like Blue Iris which has a plug-in with Vera.  I haven't done it yet, but I've got them working with Blue Iris on their own as IP cameras.  Like I said, from what I've read on livingwithiris, it can be done but it takes some work.  I haven't gotten my Vera Plus yet to try it out yet but just thought I'd throw that info out there!

Frequent Contributor

Re: How does Vera compare?

Josh,

 

Seems to be taking a long time to test products, I think you answered in this forum, 4 weeks ago.  Any progress?