Shape the NEEO future

Today we have announced that NEEO is joining the Control4 family. Read the blog post here: the huge news NEEO has released today This is a huge change. We mentioned in the post:

 

We totally understand that you don’t want your NEEO to stop working. Some of you may be interested in doing more – providing support or development work for current NEEO customers. We are open to discussions if you have an interest. We can’t promise anything, yet we are open to all discussions. You have ideas in that regard? You want to be part of that future?

 

This thread is intended to gather your ideas.

We are here to listen.

Every thought is welcome!

 

Note:
In the sense of keeping this thread future-oriented, please do post general feedback to the news over here.

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  • Make a good documentation a cloudless function and let the user use the hardware fully featured. Means just open the normal neeo for everyone.

    Reply Like 25
    • Markus Mahr At least i think, that make it open would bring it back, because you stop selling new units. Get over COntrol4 and keep selling units, make them open for the community, and get income from the selled units only. dont focus on software anymore and let a community handle this. Make it available as Github so everybody can implement changes and a small Team of developers can check the availability. But without new Hardware, all this is nonsense, as there are only round about 10.000 Units out there that are becoming older, no new Battery, no usage and only a small amount of users are able to code the Firmware!

      Sadly to say, but i think this will end on the wrong regardless what will be done! I was a big fan of the approach you make with the SDK and the general Hardware, but now it seems to land in the "Devils Hands" and is spread wrongly. It was a nice journey as a User, saw many good approaches in the Product, but now it will never compete again, it is like a car with engine failure now!

      Reply Like 21
  • I suggest and would appreciate a similar approach like pebble did. Otherwise I will have an expensive souvenir I could never use propperly. With this way the Community might keep it alive

    Reply Like 4
  • I'll admit, as someone who was very calm through basically all the crap storm about your slow updates and lack of major features that were promised my initial response to all of this is that this %&$#ing sucks.

    There's no reason my remote that works great in it's current form and has plenty of room for improvement should suddenly be frozen in time for 2 years and then unusable after that.

    That said my second thought is that if you guys are willing to open source the backend and the current controller software this could still end up being a reasonably good investment. I'm sure there's community members who would be interested in continuing development or at the very least keeping the remote functional.

    But as it is, wow, what a disappointment.

    ---

    To be slightly less negative on the tone there are some things I truly love about this remote. I like the speed, the responsiveness, the fact that I can plug into other systems via the developer API, etc... it's a unique product and that's why I've stuck with it for so long despite the frustratingly slow release schedule (can it be called a schedule when we never knew what the schedule was?) and the pretty awful communication from the company leadership about what was happening and why.

    The product is itself still so full of promise and the things it does right it does SO RIGHT and we invested in it by paying a relatively premium price that's why we are upset.

    ---

    All of that said open sourcing the code as I mentioned above is honestly the only way I can see you doing right by the many people who invested in you and the product. I know it's not the easiest thing to do to always, but it's the only thing that would be RIGHT.

    Show us that those of us who kept trust in the product and in you weren't just pissing in the wind.

    Reply Like 31
      • Bhushan Ahire
      • Photographer, Software Engineer
      • Bhushan_Ahire
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Jamie Poitra Agree 👹

      Reply Like 1
    • Jamie Poitra I agree with you and do hope this will happen and that the community would be interested enough to keep developing on this. Being no developer and quite a sh*@%& coder, that is my only hope as of now...

      Reply Like 1
      • Jamie Poitra
      • Developer
      • Jamie_Poitra
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Cédric Dörig I am a developer but probably the wrong kind.

      I'd be happy to help on backend stuff if there's any need for someone with LAMP stack experience. But, like I said I don't think that's what we'd need.

      I'm pretty sure the NEEO code backend and front end is all written in Node.js and that's not something I have much experience with besides hacking around with existing projects occasionally when I'm forced to.

      That said, the Node.js community is HUGE and I've seen plenty of evidence that there's a fair number of Node.js developers already a part of community.

      Reply Like
      • Malcolm Cox
      • Neighborhood Home Theater Guru
      • Malcolm_Cox
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Jamie Poitra is it correct that after 2 years it will no longer work? Or will we just lose support?

      Reply Like 1
      • Jamie Poitra
      • Developer
      • Jamie_Poitra
      • 8 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Malcolm Cox There's a server element that NEEO manages themselves. They say they are dedicated to keeping that "running" for 24 months. This is where the device IR codes and so forth live so you need it to add devices. 

      There's also the iOS/Android app that they maintain and that provides important functionality. I'd imagine that disappears from the stores at the 24 month mark too.

      That's if Control4 doesn't just decide they're not interested in honoring the original commitment in a a year or less which happens all the time in these types of acquisitions.

      I can't say that the hardware device itself calls in to the server so much that it would just immediately stop working but we'd lose access to important features like the ability to add new devices so it might as well stop working at that point.

      Reply Like 3
    • I'd like to see the server side, if not made obsolete (IE unnecessary) by an unlikely firmware update just before the sunset of support, either privatized so at least there's a hope of continued functionality, or made available as a windows/mac application for each end user to install for themselves.  

      The NEEO name and all existing hardware is effectively wiped from relevance with the aquisition - the target audience for a small high end DIY remote company and a luxury home automation installation conglomerate are almost totally separate.  It wouldn't bother Control4's future sales one bit to allow continued functionality for us.

      Reply Like 2
    • Jamie Poitra You just touched on an important point there about the apps (iOS/Android) 

      Now here is my wish if and when hope fails, for Control4 to create us new apps with in-app purchase as external users so we can still tap into the database ( say, could be with limited functionality) and yes for the current users as we slowly sail away into the darkness🤔

      They could also use this board for gathering our cool ideas (remember the idea voting board?)

      "One head cannot hold all wisdom"

       

      Maybe not?🤔🤔 .............It's me! I think too much! But hey, who doesn't?

      Reply Like
    • Jamie Poitra are you able to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
      • Jamie Poitra
      • Developer
      • Jamie_Poitra
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Niels de Klerk I'm not sure how useful my skill set would be in this case since we're talking hardware mostly.

      I have 15+ years of experience doing front and backend web development. Mostly using PHP/MySQL for the backend and the usual mix of Javascript/HTML/CSS for front end interface stuff.

      I've got plenty of experience doing API interface work and stuff like that usually with REST style APIs.

      I've played around with Node.js a few times but it's not something I have any particularly useful experience with.

      And I have no experience at all with programing for actual hardware devices.

      I do this kind of work full time for my actual job though I do have some bandwidth for side projects. I develop and maintain an open source WordPress plugin (with roughly 2000+ active users) on the side for instance.

      Before the Web Development stuff I was a hardware/software QA tester for a big printer company. And before that I was an Elementary School Teacher. :P

      Reply Like 1
    • Jamie Poitra This is what makes me annoyed. RIght now, if we have a special device, we have to contact NEEO to add it. In 2 years, when new devices come to market -- no way to add it to NEEO. So you are frozen with the devices that you have now, essentially making the remote useless. Sigh Markus Mahr

      Reply Like
  • As someone who works in the Home Automation industry and has seen Control4 buying companies left right and centre, this is no surprise.

    What will be a surprise is if any of those who bought a remote have something that functions at the end of this year, if I remember correctly after they bought Extra Vegetables the shockwaves to those who used their drivers was felt immediately and left a sour taste in many peoples mouths.

    Reply Like
    • Wintermute Not sure what you're referring to. When Control4 purchased Extra Vegetables, they made all of Extra Vegetables' drivers free to Control4 dealers.

      Reply Like
  • this is a joke, right???

     

    opensource this shit so 'we' can make, what neeo always wanted to be - but you couldn't do.

    Reply Like 8
  • To sad, at the end it is always about the money.... don‘t tell us orherwise... make the software open source, as a last step of fairness for all the backers supporting the neeo dream, which is over now :-(

    Reply Like 5
    • Simon Saado are you able to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
    • Niels de Klerk basically coding, testing, infrastructure, but it depends on the toolchain ;-) can you give us some insights about the technology stack used for the brain / remote? (programming languages, libraries, IDE, build automation, etc) I read somewhere parts of the code are still written in assembler ;-) last time I did that was at university *smile*

      Reply Like 2
  • I am very sad to hear that you will leave the end-customers, especially since there is nearly no other device like this one.

    please make the software open-source and not cloud-dependent so we can still work with and on that beautiful device.

    Reply Like 4
    • Hanno Wagner are you able to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
    • Niels de Klerk good question. I am a Debian Developer, I work since the 90s with *nix and know system administration. I know python enough to read and copy it and knew perl well enough ;) so, to debug and "explore" the system and debug/test stuff shouldn't be too hard for me.

      Reply Like 2
  • I knew this would happen.  This is extremely disappointing.  

    Control4 will definitely not invest in new features for us 'old' consumers seeing as how it will no longer sell directly to customers.

    This is an unbelievable kick in the nuts...  

    Reply Like 4
  • Sadness...

    please strive, in the next two years, to open the hardware and software, to those of us who have invested so heavily in this particular product.  I, for one, have no current use for Control4 and their offerings.  Neeo filled a valuable niche in our home & will be sorely missed...please allow the community to help with more than just ideas.  Let us open source develop.

    Reply Like 4
    • Harry jones are you able to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
    • Niels de Klerk unfortunately, my skills lie in the medical equipment repair field.  I only dabble with hardware and coding as a hobby. (Even less now that I’ve got two little kids to wrangle every day!)e

      Reply Like
  • As a parting gesture, please make our NEEOs work independently of any NEEO service/servers.  And please add sub-recipes/macros/complex shortcuts.  For example we should be given the ability to self program a "netflix" action for our media device recipes.

    Reply Like 4
  • Here are some aspects that I would like to see happening, besides further investing in to the products obviously.

    - remove any ties to cloud services. This means that a user would be able to add its own iR drivers. Including learning Ir codes and a possibility to include text encoded Ir codes. Ie prontoHex.

    the user would be able to add channel logos. And other now cloud based services.

    Reply Like 25
    • Niels de Klerk follows exactly what i've been trying to put in the BETA section

      Reply Like 1
    • Niels de Klerk 

      Yep - and there is a whole host of ideas that I have as well that would simplify it but make it much more powerful than now.  I'll reserve comments until we learn more - but there is alot that can be done quickly (especially if we could cobble together a team to work on different aspects)

      Reply Like 6
      • Emanuel
      • Builder @AWS
      • cro13
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Niels de Klerk Well, it's not necessarily a good idea. I think those could become open sourced modules themselves so that the community can contribute and everyone could benefit from that.

      Reply Like 2
    • Emanuel are you able to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
      • Emanuel
      • Builder @AWS
      • cro13
      • 8 mths ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Niels de Klerk Architecture, Development. Former NEEO

      Reply Like 4
    • Niels de Klerk It seems that you are trying to find people in the community to help keep Neeo alive, I am a web developper (PHP/SQL/MongoDB and javascript/vueJS for frontend), I understand nodejs even if I only developped small functionalities with it, bu I would be glad to help :)

      Reply Like 1
    • Romain Prevost there’s little difference between JS and nodeJS. So it’s good to know.

      Reply Like
  • I'm sad. I was just getting ready to purchase a NEEO. One of the major reasons was that NEEO wasn't following the Control4 business model. 

    I looked at Control4 and decided the company wasn't for me. Their customer demographic is a wealthy and non-technical user who wants to pay them $100k plus to automate their home. Then any time you want to add or change something, you have to continue to pay Control4 to add to or fix your system. Control4 works great but I don't want to pay the high upfront cost and also be locked into their service for the rest of my life. 

    Reply Like 3
  • Being a SW developer myself I was super happy to get a platform I can contribute my own custom divers to fit my specific needs; with your move you destroy all the efforts and possibilities. I can only +1 the request to remove the cloud binding and make the whole platform open source. I‘m sure we the community can keep it alive. 

    Reply Like 10
    • Stefan Riesen are you willing to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
      • Emanuel
      • Builder @AWS
      • cro13
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Stefan Riesen In order for the benefits to reach all NEEO customers, the cloud have to be maintained/transformed one way or the other, so that they would get regular updates as if nothing happened.

      Reply Like 2
    • Niels de Klerk I would be up for it, given I‘d be not the only one. I have a history that entails a completed degree as electrical technitian. After that I switched to technical software engineering. Coded mainly Java, JavaScript and Typescript, did some IOS stuff, also had some low level C and Assembler exposure. At the moment I‘m serving my duties as software architect. The only problem with the platform (as I think you pointed out) is that it‘ll have a dying user base since our Friends are abandoning the hardware. To your question to what extent: I believe the user base consists of many tinkerers, therefore I would try move the platform to a state where it‘s easy for technically savvy people to keep their set-up alive, this would fit my needs. I don’t fancy doing end-user support for a dying product.

      Reply Like 2
  • Please just do the right thing, make sure it will work locally after all your servers are shut down. An make sure we can at least add and update IR-codes, thats the least you can do. 

    A sad sad day!

    Reply Like 10
  • Big companies take over small companies if they find them threatening and then kill them. I am sure Control4 will kill Neeo in matter of months after they have fully integrated them into their system

    Reply Like
    • The thing is that Control4 doesn't compete with NEEO - if NEEO is a fixed wing plane, Control4 is a black tie only Helicarrier with condo space.   When our plane breaks down, we're looking for a new plane - not shopping for a tux and getting another job to finance a butler and lifetime dues so we can buy a condo in the helicarrier instead.

      Reply Like
    • Ryan Guenther The Neeo Pro was much, much closer to Control4's market. 

      Reply Like
      • Steveeo
      • Steveeo
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Mike Whooley But as far as we know, Neeo Pro was just a concept, not an actual product. Maybe the entire Neeo Pro announcement was a sham. See my comments on that possibility here: https://planet.neeo.com/t/q5wbv4.

      Reply Like 1
  • I think it would be awesome if the software could be open sourced. The hardware is fantastic and It would be exciting to see how far it could be taken.

    Reply Like 2
  • If they sold NEEO plus the source code, how can they open source it? am I missing something?

    Reply Like 1
    • Derrick Very good point. Following the popular saying hope for the best and prepare for the worst, let's hope they still can open source the code and prepare ourselves to throw out a nice but useless piece of hardware sometime in the next 2 years.

      Reply Like 1
    • Derrick 

      They cannot. So it is probably going to be the inevitable reverse engineering by some clever German dude that saves us.

      Reply Like 4
    • Derrick they can’t, this is a nonsense thread to make everyone think they actually care what happens to you or the money you spent. 

      Reply Like 2
    • Derrick 

      It's possible that this is just an "acqhiring" deal - i.e. purchasing a company merely to hire all their staff. Control 4 would gain a team of experienced engineers etc. who work in home automation, and already are familiar with each other as a team. It's fairly common..

      And as potential bonuses for Control 4, they remove a potential competitor from the market, and - possibly - gain some new customers from Neeo -> Control 4 upgrades.

      If so, they might have little or no interest in the Neeo IP. It might overlap greatly with what they already have. Of course, that still doesn't mean they would necessarily release it to the public domain!

      Reply Like 2
  • I'll repeat the two key things that have to happen for Neeo to have any future. Eliminate the cloud bindings and open source the software. Even if you just open source all the software, we may be able to solve the cloud bindings ourselves. But, if we can't modify what is already available, there isn't a future for Neeo.

    Reply Like 7
      • Jamie
      • Jamie
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Richard Thomas What do you think C4 got when they bought Nero, staff, IP and a customer base. They are not likely to give the software up, firstly they just paid for it, secondly it could be used to support or even make a product to compete against them... Which I'm sure is partly when it was handy to buy Nero to start with. We will just be collateral damage in all this.

      Reply Like
    • Well, they certainly didn't get the customer base.  How many NEEO users do you think will give up all control of their systems to strangers, paying mega bucks for any small change to functionality, at BEST paying $100 a year for the privilege to make changes?   I certainly will have to look elsewhere for what NEEO promised, filling the huge hole in the high end universal remote category.

      Reply Like 1
    • Jamie We don't know the details; but it's entirely possibly Control 4 have no interest in the Neeo IP, and it's merely an acq-hiring deal; buying the company for their staff.

      Reply Like
    • Mike Whooley they want the hardware platform , already announced it. I guess they have drained all the IP from the current neeo tech team over the last couple of months. I guess NEEO´´s board members will get handed a cheque and the tech team will be let go as soon the platform is stable at control4, I assume they have their own engineers for their current remote product and therefor will not need additonal headcount. 

      they want to make it sound like they chose which buyer they want, I guess they where close to beeing "underfunded" and control4 was there to take whats left, and probably very very cheap

      Reply Like 2
    • Daniel Sütel Thanks - do you have a link to that announcement (where Control 4 stated they were interested in the Neeo hardware?) Would love to read the details.

      Reply Like
    • Mike Whooley I saw it somewhere here in one of the users posts, sorry dont have the link saved. 

      Reply Like
    •  Mike Whooley  Quote from C4 quartely business review "Second, on February 1st, Control4 acquired Swiss-based company NEEO for a total consideration of $11 million in cash and the assumption of operating debt which will be paid off 

      NEEO acquisition is a talent and technology investment"

      Reply Like 1
    • Mike Whooley Is this : https://planet.neeo.com/t/18fhyb/neeo-as-control4-remote what you are loopking for?

      Reply Like 1
    • Emmanuel Serebe Yeah, was reading that just now. That's interesting... Neeo was moving more into Control 4's space, with more pro-level features and professional installers. I wonder was that a result of, or the cause of Control 4's interest in Neeo?

      Reply Like
    • Mike Whooley I think it was the idea from beginning to make NEEO a sales object OR they simply ran out of options (money) and control4 made a bargain deal (11MUSD)

      Reply Like 2
    • Jamie  I did think of adding a note asking Patrick to clarify what was realistically possible. He asked for ideas. I expect that Control4 has bought all the IP, but I can't see the software being of any interest to them. Has Control4 bought the IP for the software? Do they want it, or are they willing to release it? Could something be negotiated around access to the platform, or the software itself to allow current Neeo users to support the platform?

      Reply Like
    • Richard Thomas are you willing to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
    • Niels de Klerk Yes, I would be willing to contribute to an open source project. I have development experience in a wide range of languages, and some embedded systems development experience. (My node.js is limited but I can pick it up.) I'm also willing to act as a technical tester.

      I have limited time available, so I'm not able to volunteer as someone who can drive the project.

      Reply Like 1
    • Daniel Sütel Very interesting quote ... mainly the part about "operating debt which will be paid off". I guess Neeo ran out of money and this was indeed the only viable option to sell themselves to Control4. Sad  

      Reply Like
      • Beat M
      • IT Application Manager
      • Beat
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Daniel Sütel So they bought NEEO for a pocket money !!

      Reply Like
  • interesting discussion between Neeo and control4

    https://planet.neeo.com/t/18fhyb/neeo-as-control4-remote

     

    looks like control4 has replaced NEEO. I am sad with no clear path and wasted $ money

    Reply Like
  • You guys are garbage. I hope sleep well at night with this ponzi scheme you’ve put together. Not a bad days work for a little crowd funding theft . 

     

    What you really mean mean to say is, thanks for your money idiots. Enjoy your paper weights. But here’s your message board to bitch while i disregard everything to make you feel better. 

    Reply Like 6
  • What a complete and utter load of BS. Talk about a shit experience from the start. You drag it on for years and years, promising and not delivering on some of those promises. Now you go and do this. So glad we were all about to give you money in order to line your pockets and then f**k us in the a$$ with a remote that will be useless in 24 months time.

     

    Fan f**king tastic!

    Assuming this wont go open source either as I am sure you sold that to control4. So anybody getting excited about that possibility can forget about it!.

    It was looking like it would be a great little product that was evolving and getting better and better, shame that's all going to stop now and we will all have a shiny piece of aluminium that we can show off to people when they say they are thinking of backing something on kickstarter.

    Reply Like 7
  • thinking about possible solution Jeff Raphael

    1) Make an option to run cloud database on premises. Update software to support this. 

    OR

    2) Make it subscription based 

    2a) new software version (paid)

    2b) add new devices and support of existing one (paid)

    2c) support for hardware (paid)

    Reply Like 1
  • thinking about possible solution Jeff  Raphael

    1) Make an option to run cloud database on premises. Update software to support this.   

    OR 

    2) Make it subscription based   

    2a) new software version (paid)  

    2b) add new devices and support of existing one (paid)  

    2c) support for hardware (paid)

    Reply Like
  • So, I just read the news. I'm in agreement with the vast majority of the people here...this is very sad news. I personally have avoided anything Control4 due to the fact they they over-hyped and over-hyped in the home automation sphere.

    Please open source the server sans cloud bindings so that we can continue running our remotes. I do not trust that any real support will come in the next 24 months from Control4. I love this remote but now I may have three bricks in two years time. 

    The search is on for possible replacements soon.

    Sad news indeed.

    Reply Like 1
  • Open source, so people can keep developing the firmware for neeo, and please make IR learning available ASAP before the end of neeo.........

    Reply Like 1
    • Don Tong are you able and willing to contribute to open source and In what way?

      Reply Like
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