D-Link D.I.Y. Security Kit ReviewBy - 01/01/2017
D-Link’s been around for awhile. In fact, a D-Link security camera was the first security camera I owned. But cameras aren’t their only focus. They also have other products for security and automation, and today, we’re going to take a look at those.
D-Link Connected Home Hub
I’m not a fan of D-Link’s Connected Home Platform. It’s way too reliant on power-thirsty Wi-Fi devices. But we all have different preferences, and Connected Home might be just what you’re looking for.
Connected Home is centered around the Connected Home Hub that is accompanied by a range of sirens and sensors. The hub works with Wi-Fi and Z-Wave devices, although D-Link’s Z-Wave sensors have been discontinued in the U.S (still available in the U.K.). Nevertheless, the Connected Home Hub is compatible with AllSeen devices (e.g. the AllSeen Wi-Fi lighting solutions) which gives it a lot of potential for smart-home integration.
The Connected Home Hub can be setup by plugging it directly into your home router. It acts as the central control point for your system. By using the mydlink app, you can control all the devices on your system, customize the system, and setup multiple users that can access the devices all at once using the same login information. The app is only compatible with Android and iOS devices and will only recognize devices for which D-link provides support. While this may be limiting, D-Link is planning to rectify this by using an open API.
The Sensors and Siren
The Motion Sensors
D-Link offers a Wi-Fi Motion Sensor (DCH-S150), which as I said earlier is a power-thirsty device. The sensor needs to be plugged into a power outlet to function, which limits its placement. Also, the sensor is not pet-immune, so expect false alarms.
On the brighter side, the motion sensor talks with other D-Link devices. For example, you can set it up to turn your lamps on (plugged into a smart outlet) or arm your D-Link cameras when it detects motion.
Our brothers in the UK are lucky to have the Z-Wave Motion Sensor (DCH-Z120). Unlike the Wi-Fi version, it runs on battery, so placement is flexible. It also comes equipped with light and ambient temperature sensors. It sells for ￡50.
D-Link UK also sells a Z-Wave Door/Window Sensor (DCH-Z110) for ￡42. Similar to the Z-Wave motion sensor, the Door/Window Sensor outshines its lesser counterparts as it is also outfitted with light and temperature sensors. This enables it to send alerts and trigger other devices on the platform via the mydlink home app.
The Water sensor (model DCH-S160)
I’m not a big fan of the Wi-Fi Water Sensor either. Like other D-Link automation products, it relies on Wi-Fi and must always be plugged into an AC outlet. This might not be a huge deal if you end up placing the sensor near the washing machine, under your kitchen sink, or in some other area where an outlet is available, but can be more limiting than a battery powered device.
Regardless of where you place the water sensor, once it detects unwanted moisture from a leaking pipe or toilet, it will immediately send a message to the Connected Home Hub, which will then send you a notification on your connected phone.
The Automation Devices
D-Link offers two smart plugs. Both have similar features, but one varies slightly from the other. The first smart plug is DSP-W110. It enables you to turn on/off appliances plugged into it with a smartphone or to create a schedule. The other plug is DSP-W215. It has the same features as DSP-W110, with the addition of Energy Usage Monitoring and Thermal Shut-Off. It sells for $49.99, while the DSP-W110 sells for $39.99.
Only two of D-Link’s cameras work with the Connected Home Platform. First is the DCS-935L, a 720p camera with a 180-degree viewing angle. It has features such as live viewing via your smartphone, motion and sound detection, and night vision.
These two are not the only cameras in D-Link’s line-up, but they are the only ones that work with Connected Home. Other D-Link cameras include pan-and-tilt cameras, baby monitors, and outdoor cameras.
Personally, I’m not impressed by D-Link’s Connected Home Platform. It doesn’t do anything that other tested systems can’t do, and believe me, there are comparable options that have withstood the test of time. There is limited IFTTT integration, so that’s a plus. But if D-Link really wants to step up their home automation platform, they need to add more devices to their lineup and be more consistent. The fact that they’ve already pulled some products from the US market is not encouraging. You can learn more about D-Link’s Connected Home on dlink.com.