Insteon Fiasco

Food for thought…

Another perspective:


Does not paint a pretty picture for people who are heavily dependent on a smart home technology. Kinda one of the reasons that have done very little outside of cameras with Wyze. Those at least I can load with RTSP firmware and still function.

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I haven’t gone insane with my smart home stuff. I have some plugs (Kasa, Wyze) and some smart wall switches (z-wave, kasa). The z-wave and kasa devices CAN be controlled locally. I’m also using some YoLink stuff which will also work without the cloud. Also the Wyze V2 sensors and hub.

As to cameras, I have some Amcrest IP cams, Z-modo analog dvr and the Wyze cams (mostly V2s). I stuck with the V2s just so I COULD load the Dafang RTSP firmware.

This is my big fear.

Wyze is expanding into a lot of product fields and the big risk is obvious: Doing a lot of so-so products and underestimating the competition on their big core sellers (I’m assuming the cameras but I could be wrong).

Because we don’t have a right-to-repair if Wyze were to go belly-up then everything I own gets bricked (server is needed to authorize the app login and, I presume, communicate with the local devices).

It makes me reluctant to trust Wyze or recommend it to others except for the smallest of investments. I’d love a promise from Wyze that if they stopped providing the services they’ll open up the code. That backstop promise would make it easy to invest more.

Similar to what happened with Pebble – the watch is dead but the cause lives on, much to my surprise and delight. But it’s not ideal because the Android apps eventually get old and Rebble has to fight with that extra layer of complication.

Has Wyze ever put out what it would do if it had to shutdown? Is anyone aware of any promises or commitment to open up its app software and device firmware so our devices could still work?

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No information from Wyze but there is an additional thread over here:

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Yeah, it appears to me the risk of most of us losing our investment is higher now than it was in 2018. We’re in a growth phrase, they biffed this last security issue and it seems like a real question whether their revenue can keep up with their added product line.

But I don’t have access to their books. It’s ahrd to know whether they would insteon us or do like Pebble or something better.

From a business perspective the only virtue in talking about this stuff is as a way of differentiating from the competition – someone on Wyze’s marketing team would have go make a case that it actually matters to people which seems iffy – along the lines of “The competition might disappear but Wyze has made the commitment to right-to-repair and opening up all the software necessary to make sure your equipment doesn’t become obsolete if the worst happens to us.”

That would be damn compelling for me, in the same way well-supported open source projects are compelling. Would anyone else care? Would anyone who has never written code think it is important? Does it sell more widgets?

Even if it did, I don’t think I could convince Wyze that it did. So my hope is mainly in the adoption of the Matter protocol. If Wyze is able to thoroughly implement Matter so completely that we are no longer dependent on the Wyze app for the vast majority of the functionality then there’s a real chance that hardware lasting longer.

Fingers crossed.

I have 24 cameras in use currently 16 being V3’s on my Wyze camera network.

If Wyze did go belly up and pull an Insteon, I would just move on to the next manufacturer as the way I look at I already got my money out of these cameras in their 1st year of usage.

Calling these cameras an “Investment” is kind of laughable in my opinion, they are just electronic toys, gadgets, current fad, etc… There will always be something better with these types of products.

That’s fair I guess but it does result in a junk-for-all society where we don’t build quality, we build for consumption and disposal. That’s a lot of waste. It will catch up with us eventually.

Plastic comes from oil and, eventually, oil runs out. Maybe not in our lifetime but when it does happen it means the cost of plastic will go way up because the only options will be more expensive (whether it’s recycling or more extreme drilling or some new thing).

So, yeah, if you don’t have kids and you don’t care whether society becomes a giant trash fire of plastic then I think it’s fine if we keep pumping out toys that go obsolete every year. Que Será, Será!


You can read a lot of things into this, but how about Wyze just recognizing they need to stay in business? Something Insteon didn’t?

What makes you think Insteon wanted to go out of business? They made mistakes and couldn’t get the funding needed to stay in business. The same could easily happen to Wyze.

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I didn’t say Insteon wanted to go out of business. I was saying maybe they didn’t think about cash flow, like so many complain about here. :slight_smile:

Keep in mind, Wyze almost went out of business last year or was it 2020 because of poor planning and lack of cash. They were fortunate because they found investors, that time. Insteon wasn’t so lucky. Now Wyze is scrambling to generate cash by increasing subscriptions and pushing new products out the door. To me, it seems far too familiar.


Well as I see it you’re both right. I don’t put much stock in the cameras surviving but I also would like to get the most use possible for both economic and environmental reasons.

So I’ll use them as long as they work and see what else can be done. I’m pretty disappointed there doesn’t seem to be an independent Dafang style alternative for the V3s yet.


I started double checking to see if maybe Dafang worked in the V3 after all, but no dice. The most substantive old thread is below. If the now-deep-sixed Wyze V3 RTSP really doesn’t work offline, and other projects like WyzeHacks and TinyCam rely on Wyze services, then the V3s really become paperweights when Wyze folds up shop.


See also

I haven’t seen the complaints about cash flow. Except maybe my personal lack of cash flow?

I hope Wyze is doing okay. Inflation plus cash flow issues would be bad news. The vision, their design ethos really seems quite good. In the rush to diversify their product line are they able to apply that vision as well as they must to keep a good reputation and the cash flow.

It gives me a question: Are they keeping that vision in mind?

When you have a small product line (say, a camera?) it’s easy for the leadership to act as QA on the interface because that’s what they are looking at. When you have a bunch of products you need a larger software quality assurance and testing team to do the same job: bridging the cheap hardware from China with the consumer demand in America.

I hope Wyze is giving their QA team the support and personnel it needs. You don’t necessarily want to just throw more developers into the mix, could make things worse but making sure the firmware/software being released is delighting the customer is critical.

Including giving them the power to :-1: a release if it has too many bugs. Fingers crossed! They represent true competition to the big companies.

Just a reminder of how close Wyze was to folding:

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Just to be fair, for many it isn’t just cameras. If Wyze goes away so will the robot vacuum, home monitoring, light bulbs, switches, plugs sensors, etc. Many have a substantial investment in Wyze devices and, like Insteon’s customers, would be have to replace many items at a substantial cost.


Universal Devices’ ISY-99i supports Insteon devices, no cloud needed. That device also supports Zigbee and some other standards, even going back to X-10 from the 1970s! Mine has been the single most reliable device on my LAN since 2017 (and no, I don’t have any connection with them except as a customer).

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That’s good to know, but this is more about what happens if Wyze fails. Glanced at the product and plainly, it doesn’t support the Wyze devices.

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