Most reliable way for bedridden mom to control a light using Echo…

rustywriter

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rustywriter
Hi,

My 93-year-old mom lives 300 miles away, is mostly blind and deaf and now, completely bed ridden…but her minds still sharp. However, any tech I get for her needs to be as reliable as possible (she lives with my sister who can’t help w/tech…if it stops working it’s gone). I’ve been testing Dot w/headphones to read audio books and answer questions and this will be a Godsend. The one thing I’d like to add right away is giving her the ability to turn off/on her lamp (and if it doesn’t impact reliability, dimmer capability and maybe ‘colors’ which she’d like).

For weeks I’ve been pouring over reviews for the different options and brands…bulbs/plugs/switches, w/wo hub requirements…but I’m only more confused. I could really use some guidance and/or suggestions from someone who has actually tried various solutions. Again, the main thing is reliability…if it stops working for any reason it’s gone until I can get out there.

Thanks so much for any help!
Rusty
 

pc747

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Hi,

My 93-year-old mom lives 300 miles away, is mostly blind and deaf and now, completely bed ridden…but her minds still sharp. However, any tech I get for her needs to be as reliable as possible (she lives with my sister who can’t help w/tech…if it stops working it’s gone). I’ve been testing Dot w/headphones to read audio books and answer questions and this will be a Godsend. The one thing I’d like to add right away is giving her the ability to turn off/on her lamp (and if it doesn’t impact reliability, dimmer capability and maybe ‘colors’ which she’d like).

For weeks I’ve been pouring over reviews for the different options and brands…bulbs/plugs/switches, w/wo hub requirements…but I’m only more confused. I could really use some guidance and/or suggestions from someone who has actually tried various solutions. Again, the main thing is reliability…if it stops working for any reason it’s gone until I can get out there.

Thanks so much for any help!
Rusty

Similar boat here.

Unfortunately (at the time of this post) you will need Google Home to do that as echo does not support those features (as far as I know).
 

Rowlette

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From my experience being an early adopter using Alexa enabled speakers to control smart devices the Belkin WeMo Wi-Fi controlled are the easiest to setup and use.
They have worked flawlessly with Echo and the easiest to activate and doesn't need any extra controller. The WeMo Smart Switch Smart Plug just plug in a 3 original outlet and with very little effort using the WeMo App it active and ready to run.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BB2MMNE/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Next The WeMo Wi-Fi enabled Light Switch is just the Best. It takes about 10 minutes to install but Amazon has the service to install them for you.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DGEGJ02/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Again it very easy using the WeMo App to get it active.( I have quite a few connected... hall lights; high hats; bedroom lights switches) You do not have to change you bulbs and they still can be manually switched on/off.
After you have all your switches set up it not very difficult to connect them to Echo unit by running discover and setup groups.

I use Tp-Link, Hue, Honeywell thermostats with different type controls but a lot harder to to get to connect and they are finicky with the voice activation using Echo. I hope this helps.

Laughter is the key to happiness
 
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Rowlette

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Similar boat here.

Unfortunately (at the time of this post) you will need Google Home to do that as echo does not support those features (as far as I know).
Not correct from my experience and I started in DIY Smart Home ?Dec10? I cannot remember the switches they are someplace in the attic.

I control lights, change colors, varied lights coming on and off to give a live-in experience, control TV to turn on/off, control when holiday light to switch, control my ionizer, Turn sprinkler on/off, change Temperature. Control cameras! Yes the Amazon Echo can and does all this with some IFTTT help. I have been a Google fan boy for many, many years but Amazon has the heads up in this area.
I am waiting for a Security Alarm integration with my wired system to come available. You can purchase SA wireless system now but I have a good system and would like to merge the systems so I can have the best of both worlds which is controlled by Echo.

Laughter is the key to happiness
 
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Rowlette

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WeMo switch is still on special if order through Echo at around $21.00 it was suppose to be @19 but Alexa said 21 but order an extra one.

Laughter is the key to happiness
 

me just sayin

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for future reference in case anyone is doing a search

there really needs to be someone local to take care of things. being 300 miles away will make it near impossible to do simple maintenance.

I have the echo and a couple of dots. there are times they have to be rebooted after updates, whether the update is with the echo itself, the individual device/hub apps, or the firmware in the devices themselves. In addition, there could be issues after a power outage which could also require a reboot. finally since they all require wifi, there are also times you may need to do a power cycle on the router, especially if it is an older router.

I would strongly recommend the echo for the elderly, for the disable and others with limitations but not if the only tech help is hundreds of miles aways.
 

Rowlette

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A Router plugged into TPLink Plug and a smart phone with will handle a lot of issues. The Echo and Dots has from my experience has never been an issue or needed to be rebooted from updating. I use Echos, Dots, and Wemo Light switches, TP Link Plugs and Hue Lights. I would recommend Hue Lights got elderly because of the technical issues but WeMo light switches and Wi-Fi A/C controller controlled by Echo voice has worked flawlessly from day one. As long as the Router is functional then all is good. Now you can call another Echo from your voice)send email etc. and from what I have read 911 should be available in the not to distant future which will bring this system as a great ability for the elderly.

Sent from my SM-N910P using Tapatalk
 
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me just sayin

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that is if you can trust tp-link, wemo and others 100%. you are right, plugging the router into a switch is an option but it is not perfect. That is why, in this specific case, it would be best not to do the long distance tech support.

I may be a bit off subject, but I have been burned by tcp connected, I have had recent issues with wemo, and and after a recent power outage, things got a little hairy with the echo. I have wemo switches, cree, ge and hue bulbs, in addition to a honeywell thermostat, a wink and hue hub. I have an echo and several dots and been using them for over two years (well, not the dots). Most of the time things are okay but some of the recent problems could not have been fixed over the smartphone.
 
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