Favorite FeaturesWorks with Amazon Echo (Alexa) and its variants
Works with many Z-Wave devices, plus support for Bluetooth LE, ZigBee, Kidde, as well as Lutron’s Clear Connect
Choice between Ethernet port or dual band WiFi connection
Better “manual” Z-Wave inclusion/exclusion controls
Biggest DrawbacksNo generic IP camera support
A ReviewWhen I reviewed the original WINK, two years ago, my complaint was the touchy nature of the WiFi. If the hub was too close to the router, the WiFi signal got overloaded; too far away and the WINK fell off my network. It was annoying. With the WINK team's help (they were excellent, BTW) soon I had the WINK up and running. The new WINK 2 has an ethernet port. This allows my hub to sit next to my router, which works great for my network. Better WiFi in the '2' helps those without easy access to a CAT5 cable, but plug it in if you can.
WINK 2 does not have a computer interface. The free smartphone app is your link to the hub. The app is very simple, and unlike other apps/gateways, items are organized by device type first, not room. You can further define each of these categories with groups. Groups could be rooms, purpose, or just smaller collections of device type. Paired devices can be scheduled by time or sunrise/sunset, or by 'Robots'. Robots are WINK’s way of creating events. This is the heart of home automation, and this hub offers many ways to configure your home with an app that is not unwieldy or confusing.
WINK 2 still holds onto the same "business model" as its predecessor; the inclusion wizard for official WINK supported devices is accessed via a prominent ADD A PRODUCT button on the interface, while third-party device inclusion/exclusion is more obscure. Presumably this is a way for WINK to direct accessory sales back to their own partners, but since the power of Z-Wave is in its interoperability, many of the devices we sell work great with the WINK 2 (see below for a list). Due to WINK's ability to control Z-Wave and Lutron's Clear Connect devices, this hub is a good replacement for Staples D-Link and Linksys hubs, for those who are looking to add Alexa voice control to their Staples Connect network.
In addition to voice access via Amazon Echo, WINK 2’s Robots have the ability to control paired devices automatically based on geofences. Your smartphone knows you are home, and the WINK 2 turns on your lights, adjusts the temperature, or kicks off any robot you create, based on where you are. Geofencing is a boon for those of us with ever-changing lives that don’t stick to schedules.
The WINK 2 does not have a battery backup, or any port to store your device library (which is on the cloud). For those coming from smart hubs that have these features, this may be a miss for you. If you’re new to home automation, I don’t think you’ll miss it. A caveat on the new WINK, for those who want to include cameras in their home automation, is non-compatibility with generic IP cameras. I do not see any workaround to include third party security cameras into the mix, leaving only WINK's rather expensive cameras as an option.
While the WINK 2 will not be every solution for every automation project, its Amazon Echo functionality, ease of use, relatively low cost, and reliability make it a great choice for the average homeowner looking for voice and smartphone control of his or her home. It is very responsive, allows inclusion of many device types, and it requires little previous knowledge of home automation.
The WINK 2 can be purchased from Zwaveproducts by clicking here.
Here are a few items to help you setup your WINK 2
The z-wave controls menuTo access the Z-Wave inclusion/exclusion menu,
• Find the screen on your smart device that shows your WINK hub
• Choose the 'gear' in the upper right hand corner
• Choose the hub that you want to modify
• Scroll down to Settings, and choose Z-Wave
Z-Wave Network Rediscovery
Z-Wave Network Rediscovery makes the WINK rediscover the Z-Wave mesh network, and forces each Z-Wave device to update its own internal map of the mesh network.
This button erases the Z-Wave network so you can start from scratch, or use the WINK in a new place
Learning Mode & Shift Controller
(Advanced) Learning Mode allows the WINK to be included into another Z-Wave controller’s network
(Advanced) Shift Controller changes the primary rights of one controller to another.
Allows you to include a supported Z-Wave device into your WINK network without going through the WINK wizard
Allows you to remove a supported Z-Wave device into your WINK network without going through the WINK wizard
LED FLASH MEANINGWorking without the WINK wizard to guide you, the LEDs on the hub itself are suddenly more important. Here is a breakdown of what those flashes mean:
(from the WINK website)
COLOR - MEANING
Solid white - Starting up
Breathing green - Updating radios or Transfer in progress
Breathing white - Not added to Wink
Breathing blue - Connecting to network and adding to Wink
Solid blue - Connected to Wink
Building green - Downloading update
Solid green - Successful update
Solid yellow (4 sec) - Failed update
Rapid flashing white - Hub is updating
Flashing blue - Hub is in pairing mode
Solid green (2 sec) - Device successfully paired / message from a connected device
Solid yellow (2 sec) - Device failed to pair
Flashing yellow - Z-wave inclusion / exclusion failure
Solid red - Corrupt memory
Flashing red/green - Problem with an update
Flashing white - Preparing to reboot
Breathing yellow - Disconnected from network
Red/Blue flashing - Performing factory reset
Solid green (0-5 sec) - In reset mode, release button to initiate reboot
Flashing green (5-30 sec) - In reset mode, release button to delete WiFi information
Flashing bright green / dim green (30+ sec) - In reset mode, release button to fully factory reset
INCLUDING A Z-WAVE DEVICE USING THE Z-WAVE CONTROLS MENU1. From the Z-Wave Controls menu, select INCLUSION MODE (Hub LED flashes blue)
2. Perform the inclusion steps on the Z-Wave device.
3. Wait for the process to finish. Your new device will have a generic name and be in the menu of its device type.
ie: A Z-Wave LED bulb will be called Light Bulb and it will be under the Lights and Power Menu.
4. Long press on the device icon to bring up the Edit Menu. Choose EDIT THIS (DEVICE), set the name and any other details.
A list of devices that will work with WINK 2This list is not an all-inclusive list. It shows a wide variety of stocked devices that will work with WINK. Click on each link for more information.
Wall Switches and Plug-in Modules
GE Plug In Dimmer 12718
GE Plug In On/Off 12719
GE Smart Switch 12722
GE Smart Dimmer 12724
GE Smart On/Off Toggle 12727
GE Smart Dimmer Toggle 12729
Go Control TBZ48
Go Control CT100
Aeon Labs Water Sensor DSB45-ZWUS
Go Control Door & Window Sensor WADWAZ-1
Go Control Wireless IR Motion Detector WAPIRZ-1
Door Locks and Deadbolts
Yale Push Button Deadbolt YRD210-ZW-0BP
Yale Touchscreen Deadbolt YRD240-ZW-0BP
Yale Touchscreen Lever Lock YRL-200-ZW-0BP
Have a question about this setup, or any other?
In the bottom right corner of this website is a link to Leave me a Message.
Alternately . . . Ask An Expert by filling out this form.
I hope this was helpful.