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post #31 of 69 Old 04-01-2012, 07:16 AM
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Don't get me wrong, I totally understand the hassles a reseller would have to go through to really get a system perfected. And by perfected I mean by the owners opinion of it. I'd daresay that's an impossibility. Mainly because owners won't take the time and effort to understand what truly can and can't be done.

I know, my wife is a fine example of that. What she wants out of the systems is based on only what she's been willing to learn about it (and that's not much). So going to the next stage of translating that to a tech is, well, not going to happen. And when discussing the "possibilities" with salesmen it's nigh-on impossible to separate realistic needs and solutions from the dollar signs rolling around in the saleman's head. Or the salesman GREATLY underplays the amount of money that will need to be spent on really fleshing it all out.

I know this to be true from several friends with Crestron systems. They're astounded to learn what more the system can do that was never effectively articulated to them. All they know is what they got cost them an arm and a leg and really doesn't satisfy a lot of their "real world" needs. Mainly because the people that set it up don't live the same kinds of lives. Too much set up for people familiar with the system and not enough for actual homeowners. One could argue the owners could stand to learn more about the system. But at then the same could be argued about how the system was "designed" and I use that term loosely.

So the in-between ground of having tools available for owners WILLING to go the extra step seems like a pretty good idea. It's one thing to avoid making this public knowledge, that's an understandable means to contain support costs. It's another thing entirely to prevent it. That's short-sighted.

Sure, it raises the likelihood of a reseller not getting customization business. Of course, if they're not competent (again, this is a loosely defined term) that won't happen anyway. There wouldn't be a need for owner configuration if that wasn't a problem in the first place. That and it's extremely unlikely this 'empowered' owner is then going to turn around and be anything resembling competition to reseller either.

So preventing them from gaining access to the tools accomplishes, what, exactly? Antagonizing them so they become active voices speaking against the product line? Because that IS a lot more likely. Instead of them just being negative about the reseller (and who isn't a lot of the time) they're PO'd about the vendor too. Not exactly good PR.
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post #32 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by wkearney99 View Post

Don't get me wrong, I totally understand the hassles a reseller would have to go through to really get a system perfected. And by perfected I mean by the owners opinion of it. I'd daresay that's an impossibility. Mainly because owners won't take the time and effort to understand what truly can and can't be done.

I know, my wife is a fine example of that. What she wants out of the systems is based on only what she's been willing to learn about it (and that's not much). So going to the next stage of translating that to a tech is, well, not going to happen. And when discussing the "possibilities" with salesmen it's nigh-on impossible to separate realistic needs and solutions from the dollar signs rolling around in the saleman's head. Or the salesman GREATLY underplays the amount of money that will need to be spent on really fleshing it all out.

I know this to be true from several friends with Crestron systems. They're astounded to learn what more the system can do that was never effectively articulated to them. All they know is what they got cost them an arm and a leg and really doesn't satisfy a lot of their "real world" needs. Mainly because the people that set it up don't live the same kinds of lives. Too much set up for people familiar with the system and not enough for actual homeowners. One could argue the owners could stand to learn more about the system. But at then the same could be argued about how the system was "designed" and I use that term loosely.

So the in-between ground of having tools available for owners WILLING to go the extra step seems like a pretty good idea. It's one thing to avoid making this public knowledge, that's an understandable means to contain support costs. It's another thing entirely to prevent it. That's short-sighted.

Sure, it raises the likelihood of a reseller not getting customization business. Of course, if they're not competent (again, this is a loosely defined term) that won't happen anyway. There wouldn't be a need for owner configuration if that wasn't a problem in the first place. That and it's extremely unlikely this 'empowered' owner is then going to turn around and be anything resembling competition to reseller either.

So preventing them from gaining access to the tools accomplishes, what, exactly? Antagonizing them so they become active voices speaking against the product line? Because that IS a lot more likely. Instead of them just being negative about the reseller (and who isn't a lot of the time) they're PO'd about the vendor too. Not exactly good PR.

You are very unique- dare I say anymore. Prob 80-90% of our customers are not electronically inclined, are wealthy and very busy. We do not sell them lighting controls. We sell them convenience to help manage and simplify their life. They buy us along with what we sell. Most of the time we could push devices to go further than they do, but then we add more to learn and get confused with. This was a very expensive and hard lesson I learned 10 or so years ago. When you sell design a system, you need to keep in mind the customer, their lifestyle, and knowledge base along with how easily they get frustrated or aggravated. If the last two are very forthcoming, you keep it very very simple. I did a 20,000 sq ft house where the client comes in and pushes 1 button, his path lights up,blah blah blah blah, you all know what a complete high end system can do. It worked flawlessly, and he loved it. The builder wanted me to explain what all we did and what was happening every time he send a command. I did, and it scrambled the clients head. After that pushing one button on a screen was like him running a mile turning on lights and etc. he thought it all through and was mentally burdened by it. Sounds really really weird, true. But it happened almost everytime you get to technical with a personality like that. At the end of day, I run a business. We do many homes, and each one a little different. And my biggest frustration is I wanna take every one to the extreme. But we have to sell features for each system. You can take a Crestron system medium size, and its expensive and you could expand it for a long way. There has to be an end, orherwise the customer would be able to add and add anything in the world cause they have and paid for a faction of that system. Its quite obvious your friend is in this situation, but if you were on our side of the fence and have ran businesses in this field, installing exactly what you are talking about to hundreds of homes, you would know what I'm saying and see the flaws in your personification of dealers and installers.
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post #33 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jmaxbrod View Post

You are very unique- dare I say anymore. Prob 80-90% of our customers are not electronically inclined, are wealthy and very busy. We do not sell them lighting controls. We sell them convenience to help manage and simplify their life. They buy us along with what we sell.

You make the point exactly. Those who are installer customers are not electronically inclined and would rather pay someone else to do this for them. These DIYers enjoy doing this as a hobby and are wealthy and busy too, but they would not be willing for someone else to do this for them. They seem unique to installers because they won't be calling. AVS is going to have more of these folks on average than the population at large. Installers are wonderful and critical for many and the community, just as sophisticated wnd wealthy DIYers serve an important function for themselves and the community.

Two groups of people; two markets. This is why there won't be universal agreement here. Let's recognize this and move on.
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post #34 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 11:21 AM
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Two groups of people; two markets. This is why there won't be universal agreement here. Let's recognize this and move on.

Very true. But this doesn't stop the sellers of these products from misleading one group on what they are allowed to do with the software. As my signature says, I am not going to provide it, but I am not going to let dealers misrepresent what Lutron allows either.

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #35 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 01:56 PM
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Very true. But this doesn't stop the sellers of these products from misleading one group on what they are allowed to do with the software. As my signature says, I am not going to provide it, but I am not going to let dealers misrepresent what Lutron allows either.

I think your idea of what Lutron allows fits your propaganda, but just because you spin things-it doesn't make it true. Otherwise Lutron would provide the software online like others do. We are just saying it like we are told from Lutron. Maybe they need to put it in simpler terms like Crestron does, or just put it free on their site. It doesn't matter to me either way. I never ran across wealthy DIY lighting people who are bored enough to take the time to learn it. If you are, more power to you. Just accept it for what you think you can do with it, and don't bash it when you can't get it right. There is a lot of that on here. Take a case study, look at CQC, a company can't survive the DIY market.

My problem is not DIY, it's not even the fact people get software they should or shouldnt have. It's the fact they mouth dealers and CI, and put them down, then same with products they can't work properly. This same platform is what is used for everything, politics in particular with class warfare. I've met ci's who suck bad. They steal, cheat, etc to get ahead. And I've had clients cheat me out of a few hundred grand combined to date. When you deal with people, you run into all kinds and it's mind boggling sometimes the balls people have. A CI is a job, and I chose to skip just working for someone and we straight to ownership. It's easy to have a bad experience with a CI, and assume the industry is that way. Just as it is for me to have 40 out of every 100 clients try to con us out of half of everything, and assume everyone who thinks they know it all is that way. So I guess thats where we both are coming from.
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post #36 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 03:06 PM
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Is anyone else tired of a reseller constantly beating their drum?

You need to wake up and realize that the level of effort you're providing, if we're to believe your posts, is perhaps considerably different than what others are encountering in the field. All this drum beating on their behalf does little to improve their level of service. In fact, it more or less does more to harm perceptions of YOU than anything else. You don't serve the whole market, why are you pretending to be some sort of ombudsman for it?

Apparently, you want to believe all resellers are doing a great job and vendor schemes to support them are entirely legitimate and worthwhile. It'd be nice if that were true. It isn't. Just what do you think you're going to accomplish here? Somehow turn everyone into dealer reliant, complacent customers? Dreeeeeeeeam on.
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post #37 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 04:16 PM
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Is anyone else tired of a reseller constantly beating their drum?

You need to wake up and realize that the level of effort you're providing, if we're to believe your posts, is perhaps considerably different than what others are encountering in the field. All this drum beating on their behalf does little to improve their level of service. In fact, it more or less does more to harm perceptions of YOU than anything else. You don't serve the whole market, why are you pretending to be some sort of ombudsman for it?

Apparently, you want to believe all resellers are doing a great job and vendor schemes to support them are entirely legitimate and worthwhile. It'd be nice if that were true. It isn't. Just what do you think you're going to accomplish here? Somehow turn everyone into dealer reliant, complacent customers? Dreeeeeeeeam on.

Man, you obviously do not read my whole post, with a response like this. You led people to believe you were a manufacturers rep in this industry. Was it in this industry, or another? I'm really curious why you think you know the whole industry. There are S...heads in every industry, and like I mentioned above, there are tons in this one too. But part of that is the DIY deciding to become a CI overnight, or an electrician deciding they can do anything low voltage since "it's easy" as I hear all the time and then they have problems doing the work. That's why I'm so quick to point out the difference. I think there should be very strict licensing in ALL LOWVOLTAGE to stop what's happening by this. And like I said before, that's not just the newbie trunk slammers that cause issues, there are others that just don't care that's been in the field for a while. But I can name teachers, professors, doctors, attorneys, politicians, and about any other field that's the same way. It's called humans, and they are not all created the equal. And with the new, I am owed everything without earning it liberal mentality it's only getting worse.
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post #38 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 05:42 PM
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I think your idea of what Lutron allows fits your propaganda, but just because you spin things-it doesn't make it true. Otherwise Lutron would provide the software online like others do.

Whether or not it fits my propaganda, I don't have the power to include a link to "Homeowner Software" on their dealer page. That my friend is not propaganda, it is fact. And the converse of your solution that Lutron provide it online, why do they not restrict it in the EULA like Crestron does?

And I have noticed that since I posted that pic earlier a couple of those denying its existence have not been back.

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #39 of 69 Old 04-02-2012, 07:20 PM
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There's a huge difference between being an "expert" for your own use, in your own home, than installing for others for money...

I can wring out every drop of value out of my system, but don't ask me about how to link the baby monitor to it, comply with code inside the city limits, or what kind of backup sump pump I should have. None of those things apply to *me*, so I didn't spend time learning about them... Pro is a completely different story.

But on the other hand, don't claim some magic knowledge about a product because one attended a 1-day product installation seminar (began promptly at 10am, worked straight through to the boxed lunch, an afternoon session, coffee break, then wrap at 4 to beat the traffic... ). Yes, there are products more complicated than that, and more importantly, installations way more complicated than that.

I've always approached the CI channel folks when I needed something with limited distribution. Once they know me, and that I'm competent and therefore won't call them at 2am on Sunday asking why the lights are blinking, I've never had a problem getting gear at "good prices". But those receipts always says "equipment only, no labor". Easy sale, win-win...

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post #40 of 69 Old 04-03-2012, 09:40 AM
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Whether or not it fits my propaganda, I don't have the power to include a link to "Homeowner Software" on their dealer page. That my friend is not propaganda, it is fact. And the converse of your solution that Lutron provide it online, why do they not restrict it in the EULA like Crestron does?

And I have noticed that since I posted that pic earlier a couple of those denying its existence have not been back.

Crestron says it in layman terms, lutron posted it in legal terms. Interpret it how you like, but remember it means what it means no matter how anyone spins it. And the others as I, am tired of talking about it.
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Just a FYI for anyone reading this thread, there is currently no Homeowner software available for Lutron Homeworks QS or RadioRa 2 systems. Only Homeworks Interactive and Illumination.

The best way to set your end user up with some level of control would be the iPad app allowing editing of scenes and time clock modes.

I am not denying it's existence, however clarifying the details of the homeowner software. You guys wonder why pros stop posting on these forums - your aggressive hostility about **** you know nothing about other than some image from the Internet.
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post #42 of 69 Old 04-03-2012, 02:12 PM
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Thankfully the supplier we'll be using is glad to help out with software. Confirmed that today. So they'll get the sale for about 50 devices total, along with the install and likely initial setup. Amazing how cooperating with a customer helps make the sale.

As for participation from pros, sadly most can't do it without a chip on their shoulder. Their participation is, perhaps, not missed. Besides, don't the successful ones have actual customers and business occupying their time?
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post #43 of 69 Old 04-03-2012, 03:59 PM
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your aggressive hostility about **** you know nothing about other than some image from the Internet.

Are you saying I "shopped" the image? Or found it somewhere?

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #44 of 69 Old 04-03-2012, 04:17 PM
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Thankfully the supplier we'll be using is glad to help out with software. Confirmed that today. So they'll get the sale for about 50 devices total, along with the install and likely initial setup. Amazing how cooperating with a customer helps make the sale.

As for participation from pros, sadly most can't do it without a chip on their shoulder. Their participation is, perhaps, not missed. Besides, don't the successful ones have actual customers and business occupying their time?

I have almost $500,000 payroll a year, not counting the 6 figure income I personally make, minus the qtrly bonuses. I created that from scratch, and I'm damn proud of it. I notice you didn't answer my question about being a manufacturer rep in this industry like you parade around, using it as " evidence" dealers do not know what they are doing. I hope the dealer your working with never reads your posts. Your 50 devices will make that dealer about as much as I just spent on my new taylor made driver. Sorry I missed out on that one.

As I stated in a previous post, I love this industry, and thought it'll be fun to join this forum and help others by sharing my knowledge. I believe it was said by someone else you will run off pro's with your mouth. So that begs the question of why you feel you need to feel powerful behind your keyboard and try to make others think your above the pro's. Only you know that answer, but I pray you find whatever your looking for. I was thinking about sponsoring this forum too, as the more technology that is out there, and people whom are comfortable with it only helps our industry. But I certainly do not need to be involved with this forum now I know what it's all about. Good luck to those who genuinely seek assistance on here. Apparently you can follow the Kearney on here as I'm sure he wouldn't lead you astray.
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post #45 of 69 Old 04-03-2012, 05:42 PM
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And I have noticed that since I posted that pic earlier a couple of those denying its existence have not been back.

that must be due to your sheer knowledge of everything! Who would want to cross you since you understand all that exists....

The post above me stated it best. Why should we come here and lend support when instead we are put in a position where we have to defend ourselves.

We should just do away with all trades. Why have electricians, plumbers...even doctors???
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Are you saying I "shopped" the image? Or found it somewhere?

If you have access you can see for yourself what systems and firmware the 'Home Owner Software' is for.

Or you can read my post.
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post #47 of 69 Old 04-04-2012, 07:26 AM
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If you have access you can see for yourself what systems and firmware the 'Home Owner Software' is for.

Or you can read my post.

I read your post and acknowledged it in my next post:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...9#post21829839

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that must be due to your sheer knowledge of everything! Who would want to cross you since you understand all that exists....

The post above me stated it best. Why should we come here and lend support when instead we are put in a position where we have to defend ourselves.

Look guys, I didn't want to start a pissing contest. I really didn't. But there are too many dealers who don't want DIY'ers to even exist much less be able to access something they deem as their exclusive right.

We can all agree to disagree what Lutron's policy is on the software. But anyone reading the EULA can clearly see that a homeowner possessing the software is not a violation of the licensing terms. Now that does not mean your dealer agreement with Lutron doesn't prohibit you as a dealer from providing.

As for defending yourselves, all I did that started this was contradict Greg C's statement that Lutron does not allow them to give out the software to clients. I asked a simple question: Then why does Lutron have a homeowner version on its website? He is the one who has not been back. But I was not going to let his inaccurate blanket statement go unchallenged.

I think Neurorad summed it up best in that Lutron is walking a tight balancing act of keeping both consumers and installers happy. Do you really think if a customer bought 100 RadioRa2 devices and called Lutron directly and asked for the software that they would not get it? I think they would.

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #48 of 69 Old 04-04-2012, 11:26 AM
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I read your post and acknowledged it in my next post:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...9#post21829839

Look guys, I didn't want to start a pissing contest. I really didn't. But there are too many dealers who don't want DIY'ers to even exist much less be able to access something they deem as their exclusive right.

We can all agree to disagree what Lutron's policy is on the software. But anyone reading the EULA can clearly see that a homeowner possessing the software is not a violation of the licensing terms. Now that does not mean your dealer agreement with Lutron doesn't prohibit you as a dealer from providing.

As for defending yourselves, all I did that started this was contradict Greg C's statement that Lutron does not allow them to give out the software to clients. I asked a simple question: Then why does Lutron have a homeowner version on its website? He is the one who has not been back. But I was not going to let his inaccurate blanket statement go unchallenged.

I think Neurorad summed it up best in that Lutron is walking a tight balancing act of keeping both consumers and installers happy. Do you really think if a customer bought 100 RadioRa2 devices and called Lutron directly and asked for the software that they would not get it? I think they would.

This post I can agree with. Well said. Particularly with regards to the fact that our dealer agreements can and do contain many requirements not covered in an EULA.
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post #49 of 69 Old 04-04-2012, 05:27 PM
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ARGGG!!! Let's face it that there will always be DIY'ers and the software will always get out there somehow. The DIY percent of the population is very small and will never go away. This forum has such a large DIY presence and is a great vehicle for DIY'ers to get educated. As a professional, it is always better to embrace this than to fight it. I have had many DIY'ers hire me for a partial install which is fine as long as boundaries are set i.e I won't warranty something that I don' provide.

Lutron is far less strict in their policies than Crestron, Savant, and Control4. As a C4 dealer, I would never think about giving the customer the software for good reasons. But let's face it, the RR2 software is not rocket science. I have installed the RR2 software on many customers computers which does NOT violate my agreement with Lutron. In fact the EULA states that this can be done and that it is transferable in a real estate transaction. As a Lutron PSP, I don't feel threatened by a DIYer, you can't change their minds. I prefer to help them make good decisions and build trust so that if they do get in over their heads, they might hire me to help them out.

It's all a matter of perspective.
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post #50 of 69 Old 04-05-2012, 03:32 AM
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I have almost $500,000 payroll a year, not counting the 6 figure income I personally make, minus the qtrly bonuses. I created that from scratch, and I'm damn proud of it. I notice you didn't answer my question about being a manufacturer rep in this industry like you parade around, using it as " evidence" dealers do not know what they are doing. I hope the dealer your working with never reads your posts. Your 50 devices will make that dealer about as much as I just spent on my new taylor made driver. Sorry I missed out on that one.

As I stated in a previous post, I love this industry, and thought it'll be fun to join this forum and help others by sharing my knowledge. I believe it was said by someone else you will run off pro's with your mouth. So that begs the question of why you feel you need to feel powerful behind your keyboard and try to make others think your above the pro's. Only you know that answer, but I pray you find whatever your looking for. I was thinking about sponsoring this forum too, as the more technology that is out there, and people whom are comfortable with it only helps our industry. But I certainly do not need to be involved with this forum now I know what it's all about. Good luck to those who genuinely seek assistance on here. Apparently you can follow the Kearney on here as I'm sure he wouldn't lead you astray.

Wow, so much of your time spent insulting a customer. Way to stay classy.

Again, participation like this would be missed, how?
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post #51 of 69 Old 04-05-2012, 03:36 AM
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Originally Posted by ELECTRICDON View Post

I don't feel threatened by a DIYer, you can't change their minds. I prefer to help them make good decisions and build trust so that if they do get in over their heads, they might hire me to help them out.

It's all a matter of perspective.

And there you go. A balanced approach. Sell them what you can, build the trust for future business and/or referrals and move onto the next sale. Bravo.

No need to get all tangled up in ego trying to prove anything. Recognizing it's a product like anything else and that you provide services that have value.
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post #52 of 69 Old 04-05-2012, 05:27 AM
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Originally Posted by jmaxbrod View Post

Your 50 devices will make that dealer about as much as I just spent on my new taylor made driver.

I hadn't caught this statement before.

Let's see, the R11S goes for around $350-400.

And 50 devices, let's call them dimmers just for the sake of this comparison. So at the list price of $149 (Thanks CE Pro for publishing all the MSRP's) x 50 devices = $7,450 plus a repeater at $499 for a total of $7,949.

Now doing some math using the high end cost of the driver 400/7949 = .0503 or 5.03%. Do you really want us to believe you only make 5% on a Lutron sale? A seller on Amazon sells them for $103 which means they are either still making a profit even though they are offering a 30% discount, or they are losing 25% on each sale. I say it is the former. Lutron products carry around 40 points and a large dealer such as yourself probably gets a bump.

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #53 of 69 Old 04-05-2012, 05:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ELECTRICDON View Post

Lutron is far less strict in their policies than Crestron, Savant, and Control4. As a C4 dealer, I would never think about giving the customer the software for good reasons. But let's face it, the RR2 software is not rocket science. I have installed the RR2 software on many customers computers which does NOT violate my agreement with Lutron. In fact the EULA states that this can be done and that it is transferable in a real estate transaction.

Thank you for clarifying and backing up my previous statements. Perhaps giving them the software is not permitted, but installing it on their computer is. A slight difference, but I see the distinction.

Please do not send me PM's asking for software! You will not get it.
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post #54 of 69 Old 04-05-2012, 09:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Seems like we're beating a dead horse here. Original reason for thread was satisfied. We also had a discussion about licensing and CI vs DIY. Thanks, everyone, for your thoughts!
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post #55 of 69 Old 04-07-2012, 11:08 AM
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A dead horse we have been beating for some time now here on the forum.

Simple facts are that as noted above there are two different markets, one for those who have no tech skills and could not care less, who only want to have the benefit of the product and have the funds to have it, and one for those of us who have very advanced tech skills. We spend our lives doing advanced hardware design ,advanced software development, or advanced networks. These project make a lighting or automation system seem pale in comparison. So we feel we are capable.

As one that has participated in many of these "discussions", it always comes to the same place. We see CI's, who for some reason, seem to fear what would happen if a very small group of highly skilled people were able to get access to hardware and software for installation in their own homes and ONLY in their own homes vs these skilled people who are more than able to know what they want and have the skills to make it happen . These people are USED to learning about new systems that they do not presently know anything about. That is who they are.

This is also what this forum is about. Started by a man who runs a CI firm in Audio/ Video, who is not afraid of knowledge being gained, he and his team have build the most important forum for Home Technology on the internet.

As a member here, we need to understand the purpose of the forum. It is to learn from each other. It is not to draw business to your firm. If that is your goal, please contact the forum management, and support the forum, by buying some display advertising. Much of the disagreement comes in my opinion from those that want to troll here to get their names out as to services they offer, but are not here to offer KNOWLEDGE.

Here in my opinion, is the smartest thing said in this thread:

Quote from Neurorad

"Lutron, and many other manufacturers, walk a narrow line to keep consumers and Installers happy. Understand that it's very difficult for them.

I heard a rumor about online training, to obtain sw.

I think Lutron is trying to compete with zwave, for market share"


I see this as a insiders prospective about balance, about a company trying to balance two different interests. Note the last part.....ZWAVE market share.

Guess we'll be arguing some more.....
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post #56 of 69 Old 04-07-2012, 11:32 AM
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As far as many CI's are concerned, the rules are not in place to protect the industry from the DIY crowd, however to protect from unqualified crooks calling themselves custom installers.

In order to do this, anyone not qualified is painted with the same brush.

You would not believe the **** we come across installed by 'professionals'.
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post #57 of 69 Old 04-07-2012, 12:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToddD View Post

As a member here, we need to understand the purpose of the forum. It is to learn from each other. It is not to draw business to your firm. If that is your goal, please contact the forum management, and support the forum, by buying some display advertising.

Nor is it to somehow bully or otherwise 'beat down' the arguably opinionated DIY people. We're not your competition! We're not even your customers. And if anyone out there reads of what we're doing and thinks they can do it too, well, they're not your customers either! You're wasting your energies on people that aren't going to buy from you. And making you, and resellers in general, look like arrogant asses in the process. I'm speaking in generalizations here, not directing insults toward anyone in particular, so let it go.

As a reseller, ask yourselves, is a forum that seeks to inform it's members a threat to your business? If so, then you're catering to the wrong audience. To paraphrase Obi Wan... This is not the forum you're looking for....

Quote:


Much of the disagreement comes in my opinion from those that want to troll here to get their names out as to services they offer, but are not here to offer KNOWLEDGE.

There's some of that, not really in this thread, but I too have seen it in other threads (and other websites). There seems to be a lot of reseller effort oriented towards somehow bullying informed DIY personnel because we're somehow so disruptive that we need to be silenced or something.


Quote:


Here in my opinion, is the smartest thing said in this thread:

Quote from Neurorad" "Lutron, and many other manufacturers, walk a narrow line to keep consumers and Installers happy. Understand that it's very difficult for them. I heard a rumor about online training, to obtain sw. I think Lutron is trying to compete with zwave, for market share"

I see this as a insiders prospective about balance, about a company trying to balance two different interests. Note the last part.....ZWAVE market share.

Guess we'll be arguing some more.....

At some point the vendors have to decide what's most profitable for them long term. At a certain point going with resellers alone holds them back. But through direct-to-the-consumer retailing (online, big box, etc) is expensive (marketing, support, etc). There has to be enough revenue to sustain it. Lots of products have 'broken out' of the reseller-only sales channel, often because another player enters the market and disrupts the status quo. The customer base becomes more informed, economies of scale start to kick in, reseller margins tank but the volumes increase dramatically. It's the value-added reseller that survives this sea change. Others just whine about their lost margins.

I'm absolutely sure resellers will always be a part of any automation solution. There's always going to be a market that wants it done for them. But if the TOTAL market is going to grow in volume it's not going to come through resellers alone.
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post #58 of 69 Old 04-07-2012, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmaxbrod View Post

Take a case study, look at CQC, a company can't survive the DIY market.

If by that you mean can't survive ON the DIY market, that's certainly true, not unless you are selling something fairly limited and inexpensive and are going for volume. Though, not being able to survive purely on the DIY market isn't the same as being against the DIY market either.

Ultimately every DIY customer is a start from scratch scenario, since every one of them has to learn the product to implement their one and only solution. So you will go through the support cycle for every one of them. That's just the nature of that beast. Though I will say that we don't have a particular problem on that front. I would like to hope it's because the product is solid. You do take more of a risk on the DIYer who ultimately gets frustrated and may show up online somewhere bashing your product. But the same can happen in a pro scenario as well.

With an installer you put in more time/money spinning him up but (hopefully) that is repaid when he/she then goes on to do multiple (and usually larger) systems with a good knowlege of the product and minimal support requirements. Though we've also learned that you often put in that investment and they (usually through no fault of their own, particularly in the hard decade just past) just couldn't get it off the ground so you actually take a significant loss on those.

If I were an installer, I think I would just make it policy that if you want me to give you the keys to make your own changes, that you first must sign an agreement that you found the outcome of my work to have met the requirements at the time of completion of the job, that you are satisfied with the solution, and that any changes made by you after that is at your own risk and that any trouble calls after such changes are made will assume the problem is yours, not mine, until proven otherwise. And, even if it turns out to be ours, you will still be charged for time we have to spend evaluating the correctness of your changes if they are in any way related to problem reported, though we may waive that at our discretion.

That would seem to me like a reasonable compromise. You can make a determination as to whether your ability to make changes is worth that or not.

Dean Roddey
Chairman/CTO, Charmed Quark Systems, Ltd

www.charmedquark.com

 

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post #59 of 69 Old 05-12-2012, 04:07 PM
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I'm in the middle of a Lutron RA2 installation right now. I asked the dealer for the programming software and he wouldn't give it to me, he said it would not be allowed according to the Lutron licensing agreement. I am wondering if I made a mistake buying Lutron instead of an open system. It's BS when manufacturers make a completely closed system where only "authorized dealers" can tweak the advanced settings. Even if I want to add a simple wall switch I need to call the dealer for programming. WTF?!
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post #60 of 69 Old 05-13-2012, 12:06 AM
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Well, it's nice to see that the more things change the more they stay the same at AVS . These types of debates have been going on for more years than I can count here. My position on this is well known and at odds with the majority in my industry. The link in my sig also speaks to an issue related to this.

If a person is competent to program their system and want to do it themselves I don't have an issue with it. It's not taking any food off my table because that person's never going to pay for my services in the first place. On top of it, I relate to it, as I've often said if someone tried to sell me, let's say, computer software and tell me I couldn't make a change to it without calling them I'd laugh in their face. As I suspect would the same folks in this thread arguing that consumers should not have the software.

The argument that it would result in all sorts of disaster installations and ruin the manufactures credibility is somewhat valid, but there are ways around that. For instance, when I looked at one high-end enterprise software product for my company the vendor made an agreement with me that they would provide it to me as long as I purchased a small number of hours of consulting assistance, they wanted to be assured I would have some guarantee of a successful installation.

BTW, to those in my industry, just as many of us here have known each other for many years, I've also known many DIY folks here like herdfan for a long time and just an FYI, he's anything but "anti-CI", you'll never see him begrudge anyone in our industry making a fair profit or charging for their services and I believe I've seen him recommend people work with a CI on many occasions. He's a classic example of a DIY that not only doesn't pose a threat to our industry, but helps it. As opposed to the types of customers that people in almost every business face from time to time, that go to businesses seeking bids and advice etc., waste hours of their time, with no intention of actually doing business with them. Those are the folks we should all stay away from.
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