Wink, the smart home app and device manager by giving its customers just a week’s notice to switch to their new subscription model of USD$4.99 per month or face the prospect of your previously working Wink devices no longer being accessible via their app, voice control or their API.

Setting aside whether this is a good idea or not (it isn’t) or whether the communication or amount of notification to its customer base was sufficient (it isn’t) it leads to a bigger discussion of whether it’s really worth using a home automation aggregation service like this. I struggle to find the virtue of a home aggregation platform like Wink or Yonomi compared to a platform like Apple HomeKit or Google Home. The big two (three if you include Amazon) platforms already have strong integrations with many 3rd party providers and devices so it’s . In markets outside of the US like Australia or the UK pretty much all the smart home devices available at retail stores would feature Google or HomeKit compatibility out of the box. It takes a lot of marketing budget to promote a platform and one that is compatible with your current setup. Wink certainly does it have it, especially internationally. Seeing the “works with Google Assistant” or “Apple HomeKit” on packaging gives comfort to consumers that their new device will work with their existing setup at home.

“Works with” labels are important to ensure confidence in compatibility

No matter what, Keep Calm and Automate On!