Further Exploration of Loxone
It has been a while since posting and I think that a good old fashioned rant is in order. That being said, none of this will be in order. It will just be a random smattering of frustrations since my last post while trying to come up with something extra ordinary.
Loxone doesn't really do cloud. Their solution is local mini servers with remote access being established through port forwarding. They tout this as safer, but is it really? Open ports open the doors to a wide variety of penetration methods and are inherently less secure then VPN or encrypted cloud communication the way that Nest and Ecobee systems use.
Security overview of Loxone remote access.
In addition, the lack of a proper Loxone cloud is most like holding back progress on integrations like Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit if Loxone is attempting these at all. This was forgivable a year ago, but the lack of voice control in a smart home now is a tradeoff that is hard to make. Of course this can be done by utilizing 3rd party services like 1Home, but this adds even more to the Loxone cost and requires extra setup time.
We don't need no standards! Take a look at this Loxone lighting that uses a proprietary Loxone Tree communication. Oh, you don't like a proprietary wired connection? Try our this proprietary wireless connection called Air! Does it work with door locks? No. Does it work with wireless in wall dimmers? No. What about thermostats? No. Shades? Nope.
It is made to work only in the very limited ecosystem of Loxone devices and because they are pushing this, they avoid any real wireless communication standards such as Z-wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth or LoRa. This is baffling as they don't have any option for door locks, wireless dimmers, and other devices that could vastly expand their ecosyste.
Loxone is a security system that isn't actually a security system. You cannot use it with a monitored central station, but can self monitor using their paid service in the same way that the Ring and Nest security systems operate. Their security keypad is a doorbell / security keypad. Do I use it at the front door or inside of the house? If I am supposed to use it outside, why doesn't it have a camera and microphone for video doorbell functionality. If it is supposed to be used inside then why does it have a doorbell button. Also, why is the doorbell/security keypad more expensive than an entire security system from DSC, Honeywell, or Interlogix? The NFC is cool, but maybe it should be a separate module outside of the security keypad so that it can be used independently. Why have a keypad when using NFC? Why have NFC when using a keypad?
Loxone has a DALI interface. It is the most expensive DALI device that I have been able to find on the market and it only controls one DALI bus of up to 64 devices. If using this DALI bus it would add more than $10 to every Dali device on the network. Even comparing this device to the Creston module at $800 it falls short. The Crestron module has two loops to at least double the amount of control that you can get per module. The pricing on this piece gives me pause as to what their goals are. I can add a DALI to KNX adapter and control the lighting through the KNX/EIB connector on the Loxone module which I can do for 1/3rd the cost but with a bit more hassle. Who is actually buying this module and why?
Matthew Mathis has designed home technology systems since 2003 and has been involved in construction even longer. This site used to be devoted to this company but it now it is a place for me to rant and rave.