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Let's look at setting up a simple Smart home system that can grow over time using the Revolv home automation hub and app to control a few devices in your house that can quickly lead to a much more advanced system as you expand it. Once you purchase your Revolv hub you are most of the way there. Revolv currently has a summer bundle for sale at $ 375 that includes an Insteon LED bulb, a motion sensor, an open / close sensor (for a door or window) and an appliance on / off plug.
That bundle is a decent deal, but if you're not ready for some of those pieces you are better off just buying the hub and the devices you really want. I chose a door lock from Schlage, an open / closed sensor for my front and sliding glass doors, and two light switches for the front porch and the garage hallway. This way when I arrive home in the evenings the lights come on in the house and out front so I can see where I am going and open the door based on my proximate to the house. I will also get alerts on my mobile device or in my email should someone open the door without my being there.
Once you get your hub get it set up by following the steps on the Revolv app for your phone. It guides you through a series of steps to correctly locate, plug in, configure with your wifi and connect to your home system. If you have a very large house and are worried about the range of the Hub, (usually about 50-60 feet in a normally constructed home) make sure to get a few Z-Wave devices as they will create a mesh network allowing better control over longer distances and thicker walls.
Once the Hub was up and talking on my network I went ahead and installed my Schlage Home Keypad Lever door lock on the front door. It replaced my previous, boring, keylock without any extra drilling or hardware. The Inseon Hidden door sensor installed inside the door jamb without much fuss, I did have to scrape down the top of the door a little bit and I used a forstner bit to sink the magnet into place so there would not be any rubbing if the wood managed to swell a bit in the wetter seasons. With those two devices in place I launched the Revolv app and searched to see if they had been dropped in.
It did not take long at all for those two devices to show up in the app. Once I had control of them I created a simple "Action" for the devices that would unlock the front door and deactivate the alarm sensor when my wifes or my phone were within range of the geo-sensor. All in all it did not take long at all to set up the alerts for the door and to program in the lock codes. Even programming the revolv Hub and the actions took no more than an hour to set up and test appropriately. Now my hub is ready to go and I can add devices at will without having to purchase extra software or hubs. Currently Revolv supports Wifi, Z-wave and Insteon. You can connect Wifi and Zwave devices to the hub and control them all using the Revolv actions, or configure them separately depending on your preferences.