Opening defense: this is my first IOT install. I thought adding a Web-enabled dimmer would be cool. The install was super easy (if you have very basic DYI skills and can imagine yourself replacing a light switch and what that entails: turning off the breaker/fuse, basic wiring, etc.) Instructions for install were clear and very well done. They even included color-coded labels for each wire so you couldn’t get it wrong after removing the old switch/dimmer.) The enclosed documentation is just about right: early warnings for the less-skilled/qualified, step-by-steps how-to directions for basic DIY, good illustrations, and troubleshooting tips. What’s missing? See my last paragraph.
Feature set is nice: You can control the lights on the dimmer “from the bed, the boardroom, or Barbados” — cute marketing copy! — but basically from anywhere. You can set lights to a schedule, set an auto-off time limit, and — my favorite — set the lights to a default brightness based on time of day. Great for late-night bathroom lights!
Also, setup lets you calibrate your lights for dimming without glitches. You can choose from LED, compact fluorescent, or incandescent. Then you can set the dimming range so there is no buzz or flicker. Works great!
As mentioned at the beginning, this is my first such install and it went very well. Without realizing it, I found out that this is partly because this is one of the few devices of it’s kind for home use that doesn't require you to have a “hub” in order to use it; it’s completely stand-alone.
Now for the less-than-great parts: after install, I downloaded the app (easy) and calibrated my lights (also easy). To finish, the app asked for my email (“In case of recalls" — yeah, ok…) I entered my email and got the “Congratulations. Your setup was successful!” message. I closed the app, attached the faceplate and wanted to try out some of the many promised features. I went back to the app only to have it ask me to start the calibration again (ok, I did that again) and then for my email again. I figured I must have missed something, so I closed the app and tried to find out what I missed by checking the enclosed documentation. Nothing there… So I launched the app and went through the calibration AND email again. This time after getting the “congratulations” prompt, I was able to access the rest of the app’s features. In fairness, I may have done something the first time that prevented me from getting to this same point, I’m not sure. But I DID get the “successful setup” message, so I found the process confusing.
Closing thoughts: a great dimmer with many nice Web-enabled features. My biggest complaint: first use as a basic light switch. This should be a no-brainer: how to turn on a light or how to change the light level. Sadly, all the bells and whistles hardly matter if you can’t use it as simple dimmer. Ok, in fairness, it doesn’t take long to figure it out, but my complaint is that you SHOULDN’T HAVE TO FIGURE IT OUT! It’s a light switch — it should just work! This should have been addressed up front by the design and testing team. Let me explain: the on/off is a push movement done at the bottom part of the panel. There’s a glowing circle there that might invite you to push there, but me and three other people I asked didn’t guess that first. Then there’s a cool capacitance dimmer slide that lights up a row of tiny LEDs as you slide your finger up or down. If you’ve already figured out how to turn on the light, then the dimming function actually dims or brightens the lights. If the switch is off, then the dimmer function acts as a pre-set to where the lights will come on when you subsequently push the power on at the bottom of the switch. NOWHERE in the documentation does this get explained. As a result, it was trial and error to figure out how to turn it on and dim it. Not rocket science for sure, but I maintain that basic user testing would have pointed this out at a very early stage. As much as the Web-enabled features are great, the basic function is something that you’ll use everyday; it should just work!