The Launch Review: Cozify Smart Home

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May 10, 2016
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Post Script: The Nest Revolv Kerfuffle

After I had written this review but before publication while still awaiting launch details, I noticed an oddity in the news. BBC News did an article about Nest’s Revolv platform shutting down and leaving users in the lurch (Source). I asked Kimmo about this since it’s obviously something that would be concerning to anyone potentially considering buying into a smart home.

His response below:

Currently there is quite a lot of critical buzz around Nest. I believe that some of it is justified but certainly not all. When Nest bought young Revolv in very early stages, everyone knew it was an acquihire. I think they were very clear about the fact that the product will be discontinued and they still kept it running for 2 years before actually closing it down. While I do understand the critics, why did they bring this up now if not just to throw a bit more gasoline to the fire?
Having said that, Nest could have done a much better job to support the existing Revolv users by offering a path to replace the deprecated system with an alternative solution. It is not like there is no other option.
Considering Cozify, total shutdown is very unlikely to happen, since the product works also without a cloud back-end. We concluded from the very beginning that a good smart home is built from autonomous layers. This means that peripheral devices (locks, heating, lights etc) must work without a connection to centralised system such as a hub. And also the hub (i.e. the home) must work autonomously, without continuous connection to the cloud services.
You can also think it from a broader perspective. People who invested a lot of money to traditional home automation during 80’s and 90’s, are now pretty much stuck with it. It may be very hard to get support and almost impossible replace these systems.  Retrofittable, innovative and open smart home systems are actually the solution, not a problem. While the basic technology can still be installed for a lifetime of the house during the construction, the “smarts” can be easily replaced as the technology moves forward. And since the pricing is on reasonable level, the payback time for the investment is only few years, not 20.

So there you have it folks. Hopefully this review/article answered some of your questions about smart homes and Cozify. As always, let us know what you think in the comments.

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