What happens if Tado seizes operations?
If I equip my entire house with tado, Im looking at well over 1000 euro; not an inconsequential amount of money.
What guarantees do we have that we can continue to use the system at least as a basic programmable thermostat for the next 10+ years, given that every temperature change or scheduled event, even if its triggered via third party automation platforms, has to go through tado's cloud ? How can we know we wont ever be charged for cloud access or per user or per schedule or whatever, and is there some iron clad guarantee that the API will be opened up and/or firmware opensourced if Tado for whatever reasons, stops operating their cloud ?
This is genuinely holding me back. Anything is possible, but If I buy a system from Google or Amazon or Honeywell, I may not like if they lock me in to their cloud, but I also have little concern they will go bankrupt in 2 years. tado is still a relatively young and small tech startup and the system is entirely dependent on a functional cloud, as there is no way for me to run my own server or connect to someone else's server. Without their cloud, its literally less functional than a 10 euro mechanical clock thermostat.
Would the same be true of other smart heating systems like nest or hive?0
I havent researched all the alternatives but I do know nest works just fine without internet access. You will miss some features obviously, but it still works as a standalone programmable self learning thermostat. You pretty much only lose remote control. A quick search on Hive shows it also keeps working at least as a programmable thermostat and AFAIK it runs over Zigbee protocol so you can host your own hub or automation server and use whatever app you want to control it.
More over, Nest is owned by google, and Hive by centrica. These are large publicly traded companies. Even if one day they decide to pull out of the smart thermostat business, they are very unlikely to just disappear any time soon and being forced pull the plug on their cloud server on a cold december morning.
Tado may not be the only thermostat and certainly not the only smart device that requires cloud access for the most basic functionality, but I do think its one of very few that is both 100% reliant on the cloud and is not owned by a large multi billion euro publicly traded company. And selling a product that is "mission critical", unlike a smart bulb or wifi socket that may stop working.0
We have no plan to cease operating any time soon, but we have also a fail-safe that would ensure that the servers keep operating for several years if something were to go sideways. Just FYI, Amazon is one of our key investors.
Additionally, if you use HomeKit, this is a fully local control and therefore independent of the servers, therefore would continue to function as long as the tado° devices are supported by HomeKit.
> but we have also a fail-safe that would ensure that the servers keep operating for several years if something were to go sideways. Just FYI, Amazon is one of our key investors.
It wouldnt hurt to make that public. What exactly is this failsafe? Whatever it is, you should tout it. A cloud connected and dependent light bulb or socket is entirely disposable, but something that controls the heating of my house is a long term commitment that I need to trust. Reassurances matter.
I didnt know amazon invested. That is reassuring in the sense that it makes it less likely you will go out of business overnight, at the same time, it scares me they will further lock us in to their cloud.
Amazon bought ring not so long ago, and ever since i have literally no control over my ring doorbell and it doesnt do anything without access to amazons cloud, not even ring, and it does all kinds of things I did not ask it to do, like sharing my video recordings to third parties, but not with me (unless I pay a subscription). And thats exactly why Im going to replace it with something that I control, that works on my own network, that records when I want it and where I want it, and that I share only if I want it. I dont mind clouds, I do not necessarily object to paying subscription fees for services, but I do mind not being in control of hardware I purchased or the data it collects.
Ring sees everyone at my door, Tado knows a lot more even, exactly where every family member is at any point, who is home when. Put those things together, and its get scary quickly.
I didnt know homekit controls it independently. If Im honest, I dont know homekit well at all, since Im not an apple user (you could have guessed, as I like control over my devices ;). I If you can do it for homekit, then why not for other platforms, like openhab or home assistant? I can control tado via them, but they do depend on your cloud, so, that doesnt solve the issue. If they could control tado directly, then that would totally remove my hesitations and make tado a solid recommendation. Even if I end up not using it, and just use the standard app and tado cloud.0
As mentioned Nest are owned by Google and hence unlikely in the extreme to go bust but that alone is no guarantee of future service.
As an example Nest/Google discontinued support for older DropCam models. They also more recently planned to discontinue the 'Works with Nest' API which whilst it would not have resulted in products stopping working would have meant customers may have lost various additional integrations and features.
Still the response from Tado is indeed good news. Tado will not be able to answer and indeed no decision may have been made but Amazon themselves have previously acquired outright various other smart home companies like Ring and Eero and might eventually do so with Tado. This might be more likely if Tado started offering versions of their products suitable for the US market.0