New buyer looking for basic advice

Extending the system, interesting uses and API twiddling.
Post Reply
JimR123
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:32 pm

New buyer looking for basic advice

Post by JimR123 » Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:58 pm

Hi,

I'm interested in the AlertMe system as I'd like to monitor my energy usage, and apply some security and automation to my home. I like the sound of being notified on my phone when somebody rings my doorbell, for example, so I know if somebody has attempted delivery while I'm out.

So looking at the AlertMe website shop, they list the SmartEnergy and the SmartMonitoring kits. I would've assumed that I could buy either and add accessories to build a big system with everything I want, but a few things have thrown me...

1. The SmartEnergy comes with a small black "Hub nano" and the SmartMonitoring comes with a big white "Hub classic". What's the differences, other than appearance? For example, does the nano have stuff like the speaker saying "security disabled", etc?

2. The SmartMonitoring kit description mentions a £4.99 pm subscription, but doesn't say if you really need it, and what you get for it. Can anybody please enlighten me? I'd really prefer not to pay a subscription, when the only thing I can see that I should pay a subscription for is an SMS being sent to my phone. Email notifications and remote control facilities should be catered for by the technology I've already purchased such as broadband and the kit, surely?

I would do an online chat with the folks managing the online shop, but apparently, despite it being within their working hours, nobody seems to ever be there. So I've sent them 3 emails, to which their automated reply suggests I'll get a response within 3 hours. 2 days later, and still nothing.

So any help would be much appreciated!

User avatar
roobarb!
Site Admin
Posts: 203
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2011 4:56 pm
Location: Manchester, UK
Contact:

Re: New buyer looking for basic advice

Post by roobarb! » Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:40 pm

JimR123 wrote:1. The SmartEnergy comes with a small black "Hub nano" and the SmartMonitoring comes with a big white "Hub classic". What's the differences, other than appearance? For example, does the nano have stuff like the speaker saying "security disabled", etc?
The nano hub doesn't have quite the same functionality as the normal one; from a software point of view, I believe it can only access the new-style dashboard and won't connect to the security devices. I've never owned one, but this is my understanding. How much of this is an arbitrary limitation and how much is hardware-based, I'm not sure - though I do know the nano has half the memory of the normal hub.
JimR123 wrote:2. The SmartMonitoring kit description mentions a £4.99 pm subscription, but doesn't say if you really need it, and what you get for it. Can anybody please enlighten me? I'd really prefer not to pay a subscription, when the only thing I can see that I should pay a subscription for is an SMS being sent to my phone. Email notifications and remote control facilities should be catered for by the technology I've already purchased such as broadband and the kit, surely?
The subscription is a condition of having the full security kit, although I must agree that it does seem a little backward these days. There used to be an option to have a subscription-free hub (it was called the 'Starter Kit'), but this had email functionality removed, really so that you had to pay for your notifications. That kit has long since vanished, though.

You're a little stuck on that one, really. Even the British Gas security kit (based on the AlertMe platform, if you didn't already know) charges a wild £8pm for their system. That seems crazy to me. And their accessories are more expensive than buying the same things direct from AlertMe.
JimR123 wrote:I would do an online chat with the folks managing the online shop, but apparently, despite it being within their working hours, nobody seems to ever be there. So I've sent them 3 emails, to which their automated reply suggests I'll get a response within 3 hours. 2 days later, and still nothing.
That's weird. I've rarely phoned them, because I almost always use their online chat and they've always been very helpful. Give them a call and speak to someone in person. You're much more likely to get a quick answer that way.

Your alternative would be to try and pick up a system from eBay. They usually need to be reset and then have the code number transferred to a new account (you need to contact customer services for that), but it could be a cheaper route in.
Alerty - control your AlertMe system with my third-party app for iPhone and iPod Touch. Available on iTunes!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest