Answers to the Most Common I-TOUCH® Home Automation Questions
Home automation means different things to different people, but it is the ability to have functions operating autonomously without the need for user interaction. Each panel within the I-TOUCH® system is designed to operate autonomously without the need to be connected to or communicating with a smart device that relies on internet connectivity to issue commands. I-TOUCH® handles these functions as a standalone system with memory backup. Regardless of internet connectivity, it continues to function.
Yes. However, home automation is a phrase used loosely today. Go down to the local electrical department of your closest retail store and you will find an entire aisle of DIY products marketed as “smart” devices and “home automation” solutions, claiming great features and money-saving benefits. Oh and don’t forget – “Google Home” compatible as its main feature. In reality, what you get is a collection of unsightly aftermarket plugin products that are controlled by mobile apps using cloud servers and that although offer “sellable” features, they really have no benefit in the real world of Home Automation. When you consider the collective cost for a home, it is not reasonably priced. Then add the later frustration that it doesn’t perform as expected. We love hearing that various smart devices exist that allow you to open and close your garage roller door when not at home. Surely though in this security-conscious age we live in, who would want to risk that an unreliable internet connection may mean that it didn’t close when you thought it did? Or that you can control your floor lamp to turn on and off by a device plugged into your power outlet that has to remain constantly on to operate! Better still, the suggestion that having the master brain controlling the collection of devices is simpler as a result of being stored on your smart device, or cloud-based solutions, when more often than not the result is “lost” system messages resulting in failed commands.
Weigh it all up, I-TOUCH® delivers a truckload more than cheaper alternatives and for a fraction of the cost of high-end home automation systems.
Yes. I-TOUCH® is compatible with Google Nest Products and Amazon Alexa. This allows you to use voice commands to trigger actions, as well as set up actions for compatibility with any other smart devices you may have connected to Google of Amazon platforms.
Yes. However, the reality is that every year many thousands of new smart devices come onto the market each year, and many have become out of date. It has become a huge problem for anyone in the industry to overcome in designing one device to control all other proprietary smart devices. The short answer, it’s impossible.
That’s why following the path of the likes of Google or Amazon in the world of IoT is the safest path to take to ensure today’s design doesn’t become redundant tomorrow. I-TOUCH® can be integrated with Google Nest products including Google Home app and Google Assistant, and when purchasing other smart devices share that compatibility, the Google Home App can serve as the master controller of all your smart devices. The reassurance is that Google is here to stay for a long, long time, so I-TOUCH® integration with it is the safest way to future protect your investment.
Yes. I-TOUCH® panels are designed to fit into all Australian format standard-sized brackets with 84mm screw mounting centres. The wall switches will require a neutral connection at the installation point. If one is already present – no further wiring is required. Of course, all electrical products must be installed by a licensed electrician.
Yes. I-TOUCH® panels are designed to operate as a standalone product or in a network environment. So, if you just want to install them because of the aesthetics alone and do not want to link them to other I-TOUCH® panels, then no problem. Remember though, that all the automation features such as timers, auto on/off functions, will still be available within that panel because it operates independently and is not controlled by a central hub.
No. Unlike other IoT smart products and devices that restrict you to using their brand and style of the globe when one needs replacing (and at a hefty price tag), I-TOUCH® allows the flexibility of all types of globes. Of course, we recommend using good quality efficient globes for trouble-free performance. The only restriction is that you must ensure that the total combined power consumption of the globes connected to one button does not exceed the rating of the product. – But then again, we can help you with that also.
There are many factors that affect RF signals, we recommend placing panels no further than 9 metres apart. However, each panel also functions as a WI-FI repeater, so as long as they are kept within a 9-metre range of each other, then technically there would be no restriction to the overall distance.
No. It must be said that the biggest frustration users are experiencing when trying to operate smart devices over the internet of things is a noticeable delay in the time between sending a command from a mobile app and the time taken for the action to occur. Sometimes the action does not occur at all. There are a number of reasons for this. Ranging from poor network connections, slow or intermittent internet connection, subscribing to free cloud-based servers or even simply, poorly designed products.
I-TOUCH® stands alone in our approach because our user integration has been designed with reliability and speed in mind.
Firstly, each panel houses its own “brain” and therefore can operate independently of the internet and cloud-based solutions. The “smarts” are not stored in the cloud somewhere or on a mobile device, so it is not relying on a connection to succeed in transmitting commands within the system.
Secondly, when user interaction is desired via a mobile device, and the mobile device is within WI-FI range of the I-TOUCH® system, the system uses the mobile devices’ local WI-FI connection to your modem which the I-TOUCH® gateway that is also connected to. This results in an almost immediate response to mobile app commands. In fact, commands are executed with no discernible lag time.
When your smart device does not detect a local WI-FI connection and switches to internet mode, the mobile app uses its internet connection to access the cloud broker, which in turn bridges to the local I-TOUCH® gateway to execute commands. Of course, if your device doesn’t detect a local WI-FI connection, you are most likely not at home or within the I-TOUCH® network anyway, so the small delay in command execution is not seen.
33 – without the I-TOUCH® gateway. If using the I-TOUCH® gateway up to 125 panels can be connected and then, of course, you are able to connect multiple gateways together to increase that even further. Of course, if you require the system to be operated using the mobile app, then the gateway must be installed.
Most definitely. Since there is no central hub that controls the system, you don’t have to wire back to one central point. Simply install I-TOUCH® panels in any location you would for any other wall switch or power outlet, and it will link to your existing system using its WI-FI protocol.
No, but the reality is that you get what you pay for. Any cloud-based service that offers you free subscription is going to let you down. How? By limiting the number of actions it allows you to transmit. Perhaps you have used the service to turn on your lights five times and have used up all your free connections, then your commands to the system are no longer sent. Yet there are many cloud-based servers you can subscribe to for a token amount of less than $10 per month that will ensure reliable service and speed that won’t let you down.
5 Years warranty on all I-TOUCH® products. That is, of course, that you have installed the product in accordance with our recommendations.