back to article Hive to pull the plug on smart home gadgets by 2025

Home automation platform Hive plans to terminate key products in its line, including the Hive View cameras, HomeShield, and Leak products. A Hive spokesperson told The Register: "At Hive, we've got big plans to make... homes greener, so we've made the tough decision to discontinue our smart security and leak detection products …

  1. knarf

    Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

    Will they offer refunds ?

    I smell a sue ball inward.

    1. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

      It should be illegal to do something like that. At very least they should be required by law to release all product specification so a 3rd party could resume support of the devices.

      1. Ramis101

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        You mean like Micro$ released the source for XP or 7?

        Or Unreal Tournament? It said nothing on the packaging about requiring a server somewhere to work which will be switched off some day.....

        1. Mr. Flibble

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          No, quite, hence the "should".....

        2. Shades
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          "Or Unreal Tournament"

          You mean Unreal Tournament, the 23 year old game that currently, right now, has 473 active servers?

        3. Lazlo Woodbine Silver badge

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          Not really the same, as PCs running XP and Windows 7 would still continue working once MS stopped supporting the platforms, A place I worked last year still had several standalone PCs running XP as the devices they controlled had no drivers for Windows 7 or 10.

          By the sound of things, Hive products wull simply stop working after the cut-off date.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          Unreal Tournament has just had major patches released this year. The source was not made generally public but access was granted to trusted maintainers.

        5. Ramis101

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          Ouchy!

          Maybe not the best point to make in a debate about essentially iot rubbish, but my point on UT stands.

          It was a stand-alone game, yes you can play on line, but here in-sticks 23yrs ago, there was barely anything other than dial-up available.

          yes lots of 3rd party servers are available, but one day how ever long it was ago, i thought.... hey i fancy a game of UT only to find that the official server had been turned off. yes, some googling later a alternative & a patch were found, but it did not say , on the packaging, the outside of the packaging, prior to purchase of a physical media game, that the internet was required or that it would turn off at some point and take all your achievements with it.

          for the record, i still play UT, it works a treat on W10 even.

          XP/ 7 - I was joking, sorry maybe should have used an icon.

          Gotta go, time for a round of Quake ;)

    2. Antron Argaiv Silver badge

      Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

      Meanwhile, momentary switches and bistable relays for my brother's 1950s house are still available. (It's a Bryant system).

      https://www.kyleswitchplates.com/identify-your-low-voltage-lighting-system/

    3. hoola Silver badge

      Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

      I am not so sure, this is consumer tech and the cut-off dates are 3 years away. Bluntly, most people will have got bored of it or replaced it long before then. If they stop selling them then fine but people ditch all sorts of other tech products, often in a shorter timeframe without a second thought.

      Is anyone surprised? They shouldn't be it is they way things work now. Why anyone thought that all this IoT cloud connected crap would be anything other than transient is what is more surprising.

      1. Test Man

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        Nah, 3 years is nothing for these sort of tech. They are not mobiles, no one replaces doorbells or cameras every 3 years, they should last 10+ years.

        1. hoola Silver badge

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          Whilst I agree to a certain extent it is consumerisation of the products that it the issue.

          There is a huge difference between what is purchased as genuine security equipment and a collection of consumer gadgets masquerading as as s security system.

          I am clearly a lone voice on this but I don't understand why there is an expectation that it would turn out any other way. It is consumer electronics dressed up with tech and Apps as a security system.

          On the plus side they have stopped selling them already (although other resellers still appear to have them).

      2. Lazlo Woodbine Silver badge

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        When I worked in CCTV some companies systems still used 30 year old tube cameras built before the days of CCD & CMOS sensors, not great quality, but they still did an adequate job.

        These things should be classed as appliances with an expected life measured in decades, not the sort of stuff that gets relegated to the attic or tip when something a slightly different colour is released...

        1. Muscleguy Silver badge

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          Reminds me of the world of proper running shoes. Not the posing things you buy in the fitness sheds, the stuff you run 10ks to marathons in. Every season a new colour variant comes out.

          Me? When I need a new pair I buy last year’s model, have to hunt a bit for my size in stock but much cheaper. Just don’t go too old, the midsoles go brittle after a while.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        > I am not so sure, this is consumer tech and the cut-off dates are 3 years away.

        That should be illegal too. It's not like we haven't got a serious environmental problem already.

      4. eionmac

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        As HIVE controls our gas boiler, its demise will put death from CO poisoning a nor-remote possibility.

        1. gotes

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          The only thing Hive does is switch your central heating on or off, as far as I'm aware. I think the worst that could happen is you're too cold or too hot (with a big gas bill in that situation).

          I would like to think the thermostat continues to function offline, but you never know with this IoT shite.

          1. Terry 6 Silver badge

            Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

            The Hive controls our boiler/thermostat, but also monitors it.

            And that's all I use it for. And we have a ring doorbell. Which is really quite useful to us.

            I'd like some other home automation stuff that works with either of these, excluding stuff that can spy on us or gather more detailed information than how hot we keep our house. But they all seem to have proprietary software that means you have to use their hub, even if it's supposedly Hive compatible (like the fancy light bulbs). And they're also bloody expensive for what they are.Keeping users trapped in their walled patio means they can charge what they like.

            1. Steve B

              Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

              I have just terminated my Ring camera contract as they decided to upgrade the service with unwanted extras for only a 40% rise in cost!

              I should have stuck with my original plan to only use local storage devices. Now I need a new doorbell!

              1. jake Silver badge

                Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

                I use this (or a fair approximation) on the front door:

                https://www.amazon.com/Chrome-Embossed-PRESS-Renovators-Supply/dp/B00AIIEVP4/ref=sr_1_51?keywords=doorbell+buttons&qid=1657839989&sr=8-51

                Actual chime, wire and transformer are up to you (and the wiring code in your jurisdiction), but at least once you install it you'll be secure in the knowledge that it'll last your lifetime, and possibly through your grandkid's, too.

                If you need/want a camera ... get a camera, not a doorbell.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

          "As HIVE controls our gas boiler, its demise will put death from CO poisoning a nor-remote possibility."

          Maybe Centrica are just bringing forward the day when new gas boilers are no longer available and encouraging their customers to switch to something else.

      5. scasey

        Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

        I agree with your comments on IoT, solely in relation to the Cloud. However, I don't think smart building tech is a flash in the pan. I also don't think that the timescale you mention is reasonable. Several of my clients are still using smart tech ten or more years after I installed it.

        I use, and install, lots of IoT devices. But, I have an immutable rule that I don't install anything that relies on ongoing Cloud services provided by third parties. So, every installation has a local server (usually a NUC. Sometimes a Raspberry Pi), that works locally whether or not there is an Internet connection. Some can even be controlled by SMS.

        One of the systems that several of my clients use, and love, is the Logitech Media Server (Squeezeboxes, essentially). Whilst originally there was a Cloud option, there has always been a locally installable server (originally SlimServer). Logitech killed LMS years ago. There was a sharp intake of breath amongst their users, but they open-sourced the server code, and it is still going strong. Hopefully Hive do similar.

    4. Hugo Rune
      Headmaster

      Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

      Thank you. I had a big lunch, and what is an ax?

    5. Persona Silver badge

      Re: Thanks for the money but your stuffed.

      Conventional wisdom with these type of IOT devices is that you pay a premium and go with a brand leader so they will receive security updates and the backend functionality won't get prematurely turned off. As is often the case, ignoring conventional wisdom saves a lot of money.

  2. OhForF'
    Stop

    Net zero in home automation

    Net zero in home automation should mean it keeps working with zero packets transmitted on the internet.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. badflorist

      Re: Net zero in home automation

      Well, with all the devices about to be powered off and useless.... net zero (but not net zero pollution) .

      Hive feeds landfills a million Kg by going greener. To compensate, Hive will.give free installation for upstairs in the basement.

    3. JimboSmith Silver badge

      Re: Net zero in home automation

      I tried to buy a camera for viewing my front door a few years ago. It was just for letting me see who was at the door making a delivery, when I was at home, in the garden out the back. Would be going on a closed circuit wifi or wired network.

      I had suffered from deliveries not being dropped off, not ringing the doorbell and just dumping a sorry we missed you card

      Went into my local electrical retailer named after a pop Indian culinary delight as I happened to be passing.

      Gave the sales bloke my requirements, told him there obviously couldn't be any cloud element and I didn't really need recording. If he'd got nothing that fit the bill please would he tell me now and save me some valuable time.

      He then proceeded to show me a Ring doorbell which when queried if they'd released an update to allow offline working admitted they hadn't. I then saw Nest, Hive and I think something else, all of which needed an internet/cloud connection.

      When I said no to all of them he informed me that I was obviously going to need the internet or how could I view the camera when away from home? I asked if he'd listened to my requirements when I first spoke to him and he rather bizarrely said yes.

      I asked what use the camera would be if the cloud service went down or bust? He didn't have an answer to that. I said what if it’s going somewhere without an internet connection? He just told me everywhere had the internet now. I asked what happened if the internet connection went down or the company went bust which earned me a shrug of the shoulders.

      I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Net zero in home automation

        Are we still allowed to torture the PFYs who "work" in that company's tat-o-rama sheds?

        I'm not so sure this story is true BTW because you didn't say if the PFY tried 5-6 times to sell an extended warranty.

        1. katrinab Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Net zero in home automation

          That's because they hadn't got to the extended warranty part of the script.

          For those people who did buy the extended warranty, what happens when they phone up in a couple of years to say it has stopped working?

          1. Andy Non

            Re: Net zero in home automation

            "they hadn't got to the extended warranty part of the script."

            Didn't stop them with me. I ordered a fridge freezer from them but they cancelled my order due to supply issues. A few weeks later came a letter offering me extended warranty for the none existent appliance.

            1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

              Re: Net zero in home automation

              "they hadn't got to the extended warranty part of the script."

              Didn't stop them with me. I ordered a fridge freezer from them but they cancelled my order due to supply issues. A few weeks later came a letter offering me extended warranty for the none existent appliance.

              You should have accepted that offer. It would have been interesting to see how they would have solved that non-functioning fridge freezer. Non-existence shouldn't be a problem, they offered the extended warranty.

          2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: Net zero in home automation

            "For those people who did buy the extended warranty, what happens when they phone up in a couple of years to say it has stopped working?"

            A very good question. The answer's probably buried deep in the T&Cs of the extended "warranty" denying all responsibility for failure of the vendor to supply the service. If they missed that trick and have to make good on all these warranties there's going to be business available for lawyers.

            1. katrinab Silver badge
              Paris Hilton

              Re: Net zero in home automation

              "I bought a light switch from you, and it doesn't switch lights on or off. I don't understand this failure of vendor to supply the service thing."

              Yes, I've tried changing the light bulb etc.

              1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

                Re: Yes, I've tried changing the light bulb etc.

                Have you tried switching it off and on again?

                Had a gas engineer trying to service my boiler and he somehow got the dining room lights to do a mini-Piccadilly Circus lightshow. Learnt a few Polish swear-words that day...

                1. katrinab Silver badge
                  Paris Hilton

                  Re: Yes, I've tried changing the light bulb etc.

                  Yes. And it isn't turning on or off. That is the whole point of my complaint.

            2. Trigonoceps occipitalis

              Re: Net zero in home automation

              "For those people who did buy the extended warranty, what happens when they phone up in a couple of years to say it has stopped working?"

              It is a life time warranty. When the kit stops working it is self evident that the life time is over.

        2. JimboSmith Silver badge

          Re: Net zero in home automation

          He’d have had to convince me to buy something first before he could try and sell me any warranty or subscription. Even they knew you had to have a product to need the warranty for.

      2. Stuart Castle Silver badge

        Re: Net zero in home automation

        Re :"Went into my local electrical retailer named after a pop Indian culinary delight as I happened to be passing.

        Gave the sales bloke my requirements, told him there obviously couldn't be any cloud element and I didn't really need recording. If he'd got nothing that fit the bill please would he tell me now and save me some valuable time."

        My old boss, when he was a student, bought a PC from PC World. It was a good PC, and worked for years. Then, one day, the HDD failed. As the machine was out of warranty, they refused to touch it. So, he bought it in to work and I had a look. I confirmed the hard drive had physically failed, and opened up the machine. To find a wierd motherboard with onboard SCSI, and no IDE ports. I say "weird" because this was a machine intended for consumer use, and not a server, or workstation (which tended to be the areas that used SCSI).

        He bought the new HDD, I fitted it and and installed Windows, but my boss was not happy. SCSI HDDs cost considerably more that IDE ones..

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Net zero in home automation

          My company finally agreed to buy me a decent desktop for my data crunching. However - they insisted it had to be from an expensive major manufacturer whose USP promised models were available for many years after a sale.

          Came the point where another desktop was needed - which had to be an identical hardware configuration. The supplier's catalogue showed the precise model was still available. Then the small print: they couldn't guarantee to supply it fitted with the same type of third-party motherboard.

          Fortunately we had bought two initially - and the second one was now prised out of a colleague's grasp as he now used a laptop.

      3. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

        Re: I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon.

        I bought an Eufy doorbell after some research. Recordings are held locally, no cloud. Alerts reliably go to my phone. Charge lasts about a month. Commendably low number of false positives and no missed visitors. The only minor irritation is the alert chime can't be configured in the way I would prefer. The point is that if Eufy go belly-up I should still have a working doorbell.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon.

          Presumably the weak link will be if the mobile phone service gets moved to 5G or whatever?

          1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

            Re: if the mobile phone service gets moved to 5G or whatever?

            Ah... it communicates via the WiFi on the router, so that's not an issue.

        2. Ben Tasker Silver badge

          Re: I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon.

          I use a Eufy set up for our cameras - generally rather happy with it.

          One thing to watch though, is that the "held locally" thing has its limits, as the HomeBase gets a bit funny if the internet (or the cloud service) goes AWOL.

          You can livestream the cameras from the homebase using RTSP, and the cameras are still recording to the Homebase, so technically it is "working" without an external connection, and your recordings are being held locally.

          But, you interact with the homebase via an app which relays via the Cloud service (there isn't a web interface or similar on the base station). So, without the internet you can't view recordings, receive notifications or turn off the alarm if triggered.

          Your recordings are held locally, but the setup is still relatively useless without the cloud component. Technically, you could feed the RTSP streams into Zoneminder, but the cameras are battery jobbies, so you'd forever be recharging them (or would need to run a usb charging cable to them).

          So, although Eufy never hold video from my cameras, the entire solution would still be fairly useless if they shut down their cloud service.

        3. MorpheusUK

          Re: I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon.

          I also have a Eufy battery doorbell because I didn't want to pay an ongoing subscription but make no mistake we are still as much at the whim of Eufy and their servers. Whilst the doorbell and the chime use the local WiFi network they rely on the Eufy internet servers for the app to setup, view and monitor the doorbell. If they pulled the servers tomorrow they would be unusable. Given the battery is not replaceable I basically am gambling that won't happen before the battery dies (won't hold sufficient charge to be practical, I currently get about 3 months per charge) and I need to replace the whole lot and the initial investment wasn't that high.

          So whilst the market it as stored locally it actually isn't the same as works entirely locally.

      4. ITMA Bronze badge

        Re: and got a Foscam on Amazon

        "I said I’d try elsewhere and got a Foscam on Amazon."

        They (Foscam) are going the same way.

        Instead of updating the firmware in their NVRs and cameras to support other browsers than IE, they pushed their own subsctiption service or "Foscam VMS" - God that is utterly, utterly SHITE!!!!

        Foscam VMS is one of the most dreadfully shite bits of software ever. Plus Foscam keep using dodgy ssl certificates for their cameras and NVR with no option to install your own - when they aren't being "revoked".

    4. katrinab Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Net zero in home automation

      And it should also mean not turning working products into e-waste.

      1. ITMA Bronze badge

        Re: Net zero in home automation

        Microsoft take careful note!!! Yes I DO mean Windows 11. (among other things).

        Not that they ever do. Their Android RDP client is still fucked trying to connect to domain joined PCs. Just barfs with error 0x2407 and has done for months.

  3. Pen-y-gors

    Reciva Radios

    Some years ago I bought a Roberts internet radio, that used the Reciva service to provide information on available radio stations. It's a jolly handy bit of kit, lives by the bed, and tunes in to radio stations all over the world. It was not cheap.

    Last year the new owners of Reciva announced they were shutting the service down. What does that mean? Expensive radios (almost) bricked. Mine still works to listen to stations on my 5 presets, but that's it.

    I'm sure someone could have afforded to set up a new minimalist server that would have enabled the radios to keep working, even if it wasn't updated daily - Roberts weren't the only people using the service.

    Oh yes, Roberts I believe offered a 20% discount on a new radio.

    1. Natalie Gritpants Jr Silver badge

      Re: Reciva Radios

      Stopped using mine when I found it was using 20W in standby, and startup time after powering off at the wall was a couple of minutes.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Reciva Radios

      used the Reciva

      How old are you ?

      Sorry, I am old enough that the quickest way to lose my interest is by your "funky" mispelled brand name.

      Dodl, Hudl, Brgr; Abrdn; Joos - you can all fsck off.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "you can all fsck off."

        Why would they need a file system check? Shirley, after your diatribe against funky misplelings, you didn't actually mean "fuck off"?

        Doesn't mean I don't agree with the general sentiment, though ...

      2. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

        Re: Reciva Radios

        ...Lidl

        1. Alan Sundry

          Re: Reciva Radios

          Lidl's a perfectly legitimate German surname.

        2. AndrueC Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Reciva Radios

          Every Lidl helps

      3. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

        Re: Reciva Radios

        I had a Hudl, it was decent for the price.

      4. JimC

        Re: "funky" mispelled brand name.

        Blame internet search: an awful lot of it is the desire for a unique string.

    3. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: Reciva Radios

      I built my own streaming radio using an ESP32, two buttons, and one of those MP3 boards. Fitted it with an LCD panel (16x2) and stuffed the whole thing into a cheap tupperware clone.

      Only does http, but that's most of what I listen to. For setting it up, I just plug the thing into a serial port (my phone would do in a pinch) and reconfigure as I like (AP details, ten stations). Doesn't need a mothership or any of that crap. If you want to know the stream of a station and there's no playlist file, just play it in Firefox with UBlock's logger enabled, then pluck the stream URL out of there.

      Best bit? I wrote the software myself. So it's probably shit but it does exactly what I want it to do.

      I'm looking at making a simple surveillance thing using an ESP32-CAM board, but last year's experiment blew itself up in the sunlight. They run hot and the radio shielding can precludes fitting a heatsink. It would probably be easier and better to use a camera fitted to a Pi 0W or something, but I don't know Linux.

      Either way, this story is one more in a tragically long list of reasons why depending upon a cloud service puts you and your device entirely at the whim of the people running the service.

      1. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "probably shit but it does exactly what I want it to do" sounds like paradise to me compared to some of the tat I've used over the years.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "[...] stuffed the whole thing into a cheap tupperware clone."

        When PoundWorld shut down I bought a stack of their transparent kitchen storage boxes. For their intended use they have a limited life as the lid clamp hinges progressively suffer from bending fatigue. However - they provide excellent boxes in various sizes for my electronic projects - although I would be wary of their 250vac insulation properties.

        An alarm installation techie neighbour drools over the box containing my Arduino doorbell repeater system. Most of the innards provides various test facilities in case of problems. One of those projects that evolved with lots of tweaks - and you marvel that it works so well.

      3. katrinab Silver badge

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "If you want to know the stream of a station and there's no playlist file, just play it in Firefox with UBlock's logger enabled, then pluck the stream URL out of there."

        Most browsers come with developer tools that enable you to do this. You don't need a Firefox addon.

        Generally, you open up those tools, click on the Network tab, then navigate to the site/stream and it logs all the network requests.

        1. heyrick Silver badge

          Re: Reciva Radios

          Yup, totally forgot about the dev tools. I haven't used desktop Firefox in ages, just the Android version (where UBlock's logger does the same job).

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Reciva Radios

      My Roberts came with LastFM. That did not work out well.

      And my Denon Picolo internet radio stopped working. It uses vTuner a third party to search and find Internet radio stations which started charging a subscription. They omitted this fact in the glossy brochure.

    5. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Reciva Radios

      Heh. I worked at 3Com when they bought Kerbango (a similar "internet radio" company). Heady days, when pretty much anything with "internet" in front of it was enough to start a company.

      They pretty much immediately regretted their purchase.

    6. DCdave

      Re: Reciva Radios

      I had a very similar experience with my Philips Streamium. I continued to use it for streaming on my home network for a while, before consigning it to history, and learning a lesson about devices that require a service to function, as well as the companies that provide that service.

    7. Eclectic Man Silver badge

      Re: Reciva Radios

      All the above comments and replies to your post, Pen-y-gors, suggest to me that I'll maybe be very careful when considering a subscription to a streaming service that requires specific hardware. Reckon I'll stick to radios with aerials for the time being.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "Reckon I'll stick to radios with aerials for the time being."

        FM is the only service that works reliably for me - DAB is unpredictable. Digital TV stopped working after a new block of flats blocked the reception.

        I am dreading the loss of my wired phone connection - to be replaced with 1 hour battery backed fibre VOIP systems.

        1. JimboSmith Silver badge

          Re: Reciva Radios

          My travel radio of choice is the Sony SW-100 https://swling.com/blog/2016/09/the-sony-icf-sw100-a-miniture-dx-marvel-never-likely-to-be-repeated/ which is gobsmackingly good for something so tiny. At home my DAB is gathering dust because the station I used to listen to on it, Guildford’s Eagle Radio, is now defunct. It used to come in perfectly in Central London on DAB. When that was replaced with some generic rubbish I went back to the BBC on an analogue “world band” radio.

          1. heyrick Silver badge
            Thumb Up

            Re: Reciva Radios

            Upvote for Eagle Radio. I used to listen to that here in France. It was fun to get local news from where I used to live. A mere 18 years later (as it was at the time), and the Wisley Interchange is still a mess.

            Bloody Bauer Radio killing that station (and geoblocking). I used to listen to it from the days when they broadcast from the top of the shopping centre in Woking.

            Anyway, a thumb up for the memories.

        2. Persona Silver badge

          Re: Reciva Radios

          to be replaced with 1 hour battery backed fibre VOIP systems

          If it's Openreach they aren't battery backed anymore. When FTTP was new the modems had a phone socket that used Fiber Voice Access and had battery backup. FVA sales stopped on 31 March 2020. Now you plug the "landline" phone into a socket on the back of your internet hub that doesn't have battery backup.

        3. Sub 20 Pilot

          Re: Reciva Radios

          Living in mid Wales - one of the bits of the UK that lies outside London and the like, I agree that DAB is fucking shite. Since the 1970's I have driven my cars around the area with the odd bit of interferance and drop out when listening to radio.

          My current car has a DAB radio and it spends about 30 % of it's time with 'service unavailable.' or whatever and a deathly silence for bloody miles.

          Progress, they call it.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Reciva Radios

            DAB isn't that bad. But you live in an area with a shite DAB signal. Not quite the same thing.

            I drive a lot and find DAB is mostly a decent signal. On the other hand, anyone living near Tebay on the M6 in Cumbria or 10 miles up or down from there would think FM is shite using your logic because the only signal available is Classic FM. No other FM stations, no DAB. Plenty other areas like around the Lake District too. I suspect it might be something to do with large hills and small mountains, but I could be wrong.

            1. JimboSmith Silver badge

              Re: Reciva Radios

              I asked the question years ago about what could DAB do apart from more stations (at the expense of quality) that FM radio can't? Somebody recently mentioned an EPG and yes on a limited number of DAB radios you can get an EPG. They then mentioned apart from BBC Radio how useful would it actually be? Everything else you can do can be done with an device with an FM receiver. Recording is possible on various devices from my phone to some iPods. Radiotext can be done using RDS as can traffic alerts etc. I had a clock radio in the 90s that had RDS and traffic alert on it. I think I've still got it somewhere.

              Full disclosure, I used to work in the media and digital radio.

              1. ITMA Bronze badge

                Re: Reciva Radios

                One simple explanation for DAB - to sell off the radio spectrum that the discontinuation of the "traditional radio" allowed to be "freed up" in a bidding war.

                ££££££

                1. JimboSmith Silver badge

                  Re: Reciva Radios

                  One simple explanation for DAB - to sell off the radio spectrum that the discontinuation of the "traditional radio" allowed to be "freed up" in a bidding war.

                  ££££££

                  That’s not what’s currently planned, where the major stations are supposed to go digital only. Community and smaller stations would remain on FM. This will allow for those areas where the former local stations are now broadcast from London just with local adverts and news. Who are they going to sell the FM spectrum to exactly and what is this bidder going to do with it that isn’t radio broadcasting?

                  The problem is that take up of DAB has been slower than anticipated. The original switch date was set for 2015 and Ofcom believed by then 50% of listening would be digital. They were the only ones in the industry who believed that as most people I knew were sceptical. This was going to be switched during the term of the national Independent radio analogue licenses. Therefore the licence term would be shorter and as a result the national licenses were rolled over and not put up for auction. This was because it was believed by Ofcom that no one would bid for a short term license. That despite there being media reports containing interviews with interested bidders. Global radio also did a massive amount of lobbying against these licenses going up for auction to protect their station Classic FM.

                  The current date for switchover is mooted for 2030 https://radiotoday.co.uk/2021/10/no-fm-switch-off-in-the-uk-until-at-least-2030-says-dcms/ and makes a mockery of the original date. It’s also cost the treasury the money that would have been bid to have those licences and the associated spectrum. For comparison Norway switched in 2017.

                  The only way they got DAB sales to the level they have is by not selling decent analogue radios in this country. Try buying an analogue radio with digital tuning and you’ll have a hard time outside of specialist retailers. No point in taking a DAB radio to the USA because it won’t work there. No point in explaining that to the bloke at Currys or indeed John Lewis as they at first told me it would work. When I proved they used a different system called IBOC (in band on channel) aka HD radio they were fazed. Then they both pointed to FM on the radios. I pointed out that this didn’t help with AM reception for sports broadcasts which were often not available elsewhere. The replies were jointly sorry can’t help in that case.

              2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: Reciva Radios

                Agreed. Much of what we get with DAB could already be done with FM. The "promise" of DAB was better and more features as well as better quality and more channels in the same amount of bandwidth. Then the beancounters figured out that lower bitrates in mono instead of stereo meant many more lower quality channels in the space we could have had many good quality channels. The relatively slow roll-out to a decent level of coverage hasn't helped either. I'd say the biggest problems with DAB are:

                1. The way it's used by the broadcasters

                2. The poor roll-out.

                3. The lack of of an upgrade path to DAB+

                1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

                  Re: Reciva Radios

                  My radio does both FM and DAB. With a good signal FM is best (I listen to Radio 3 a lot)*, but the DAB signal is more resilient to interference which can affect an FM signal.

                  *And I would like to thank all of those of you out there for paying your licence fees for BBC TV and paying for the wonderful Radio 3 which without subsidy would be wholly uneconomic, and I'd have to slum it on Classic FM.

        4. SImon Hobson Silver badge

          Re: Reciva Radios

          I am dreading the loss of my wired phone connection - to be replaced with 1 hour battery backed fibre VOIP systems.

          You do realise that you can extend the backup time yourself ?

          The simple way, and I suspect only way "permitted" by OpenRetch, is to just plug the power adapter into a UPS. That's a bit inefficient given the multiple conversions involved.

          Assuming (I've not seen the kit so can't comment) the termination equipment just needs a single DC power supply (and is fairly tolerant of voltage variations) then it's probably OK to just power it off batteries that are on float charge normally. A lot of modern kit fits that bill - just a generic 5V or 12V DC adapter and internally it's got a switch mode regulator to get the voltage(s) it needs. Having the internal SM regulator means it could cope easily with an input that varied from 10-11V (battery running down) to 13.8V (battery on float).

          Either way, your backup time is entirely down to how much battery storage you throw at it.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: Reciva Radios

            I use a couple of these, I've not tested run time but it's been OK so far for shortish outages;

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B092TG9M7C

            1. ITMA Bronze badge

              Re: Reciva Radios

              My router, main gigabit managed switch, three of my main PCs and three NAS boxes are all hooked up to a 1500VA APC Smart UPS with network management card.

              And, yes, this is at home.

    8. megapico

      Re: Reciva Radios

      The Reciva radios are not all dead! They are based on a single board ARM computer running Linux - this means they can be re-programmed to keep working even thought the cloud based side of the service was closed down. The challenge is running alternative software on a system with 32MB RAM and 32MB storage (yes, MB not GB). But an internal streaming media server now exists that allows them to continue working. Search "Sharpfin streaming media server for Reciva radios" and avoid sending your radio to landfill!

    9. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Reciva Radios

      What does that mean? Expensive radios (almost) bricked. Mine still works to listen to stations on my 5 presets, but that's it.

      Try the folks at Listenlive. They support some discontinued radio types, and there's some (admittedly small) discussion of Reciva there.

    10. RobDog

      Re: Reciva Radios

      I bought A Netgear MP101, internet radio, one of the first IOT devices, before the cloud, bit ropey, but the service lasted 17 months I think before the put the kybosh on it. Waste of money. No prospect of re-configuring for any other streaming service. In the loft.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Reciva Radios

        "I bought A Netgear MP101, internet radio, one of the first IOT devices, before the cloud"

        Not "before the cloud" ... The MP101 was released in early 2004, General Magic was describing "the cloud" back in '94. See this article in Wired from April '94:

        https://www.wired.com/1994/04/general-magic/

        "The beauty of Telescript," says Andy, "is that now, instead of just having a device to program, we now have the entire Cloud out there, where a single program can go and travel to many different sources of information and create sort of a virtual service."

  4. Julian 8

    constant problem

    Sonos and the devices that would not work without an upgrade.

    wasn't there also another heating control system that went the same way a few years ago ?

    My TV's processor (Thanks Sony) is so shite, that I can no longer get iplayer, ITVHub, My5, etc on it. Not my decision, the software suppliers decision and the software has removed itself from my TV (maybe due to a TV OS upgrade). Same on an Uncles TV a year or two ago so been waiting for mine to do the same

    Me, I still like my Squeezebox, Logitech killed it, but the sever is open source and the devices still go strong.

    As for the TV's, a good old Roku to the rescue, though downright annoying we have to work around it

    1. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: constant problem

      Yes, it was Revolv, and I'm sure it will surprise nobody that it was owned by Google.

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: constant problem

      It's not the processor in your telly, it's just the software developers and the companies who employ them. My 2010 Philips will still work with the most online services from the broadcasters. For other stuff I used Kodi on a Raspberry Pi, the video add-ons aren't perfect but usually good enough.

    3. very angry man

      Re: constant problem

      With netflex bitching about loss of customer LG did an up date that stops me logging into netflex, then netflex did an up date, that totally fucked thins up ( temper tantrum) basically my 8 year old $6000 telle is just a dumb display, both LG and netflex have lost any return custom from me

      1. PC Paul

        Re: constant problem

        TVs have a much longer lifetime than apps, and TV manufacturers typically don't care much about updating their 'smart TV' apps once they have your money, even if the apps are still available and being maintained.

        I treat TVs as dumb monitors and rely on cheaper 'evolving tech' boxes like the Roku or Chromecast to.providevthe smarts. It disconnects the update cycles.

        1. ChrisC Silver badge

          Re: constant problem

          Would be nice if all "smart" TVs included a simple way for users to disable the additional features, so that those of us using the TV as a monitor wouldn't have to suffer the extended startup times and more convoluted UIs, and those of us who do make use of the built-in smart apps initially can then continue using the TV for the lifetime of the panel without being constantly reminded just how quickly the manufacturer gave up on providing updates for the apps, if they ever bothered to provide them in the first place...

          1. katrinab Silver badge
            Megaphone

            Re: constant problem

            Just give me a display panel, speakers, or even better, headphone jack, and an hdmi port or displayport, and let me provide my own smarts.

          2. AndrueC Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: constant problem

            Would be nice if all "smart" TVs included a simple way for users to disable the additional features, so that those of us using the TV as a monitor wouldn't have to suffer the extended startup times and more convoluted UIs

            I replaced my TV last year and the one I got - a Samsung 2020 49" Q80T QLED - has an option to disable the smart menu. Since I only ever watch TV through my Sky box over HDMI 1 that's perfect. All I see when switch on is a black screen then 'HMDI 1 Game' in the top left(*) for a couple of seconds before the Sky menu appears.

            (*)Game mode disables some of the less desirable display processing.

    4. Billy Whiz

      Re: constant problem

      Do you have a PiHole? I had the same problem with catchup\streaming players dissapearing and discovered it was because I have a PiHole. If I disable it the services come back.

      So you are only 'allowed' to use those services if you let yourself be royally reamed by by those gits who insist that you need to be followed round at all times to enable "tailored content", i.e. ads you never asked for or need!

  5. ITMA Bronze badge

    Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

    Well, what a surprise... NOT.

    Simple solution - NEVER buy so called "home automation" or "security" products which rely on a subscription/or account on the manufacturer's (or anyone else's) systems just to bloody work.

    They WILL dump you in the shit and not give a damn about the now useless hardware you are left with.

    1. Natalie Gritpants Jr Silver badge

      Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

      There are open source home automation systems out there. I use Home Assistant (https://www.home-assistant.io/). Sometimes things break, but they usually get fixed quickly. My Hive thermostat stopped working with HA recently, but was fixed in a couple of weeks (and I could have rolled back to a working version if I could be bothered)

      The open source home automation systems are a good source of information that can be used to choose which products to buy.

      1. J. Cook Silver badge

        Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

        Hubitat is another one that lives on-prem and does not depend on an internet connection for 99% of it's functionality. (The remaining 1% is for things that interface to cloudy things, like Echo Speaks and the Alexa connector.)

        After I got burned by most of the wifi 'smart' devices out there, I dumped them all for Zigbee equivalents and the Hubitat; As soon as I wrap my brain around Rhasspy and the Hubitat connector for it, I'll probably end up dumping the echos as well along with Plex, which has turned out to be an unreliable piece of shite that constantly wants to update itself for no apparent reason other to be an annoyance.

        1. katrinab Silver badge

          Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

          Dump Plex and replace it with Jellyfin.

        2. rototype

          Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

          Didn't you realise those so-called updates are only so they can change the adverts they throw at you every 5 minutes?

    2. logicalextreme Silver badge

      Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

      Yeah, the phrase "video playback subscriptions" in the article left me spluttering a bit. I wonder whether "smart" door locks are subject to the same level of WTFery, and which state they'd fall back to in the event of a payment lapse or the "service" being withdrawn.

      1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

        Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

        Service withdrawn: locks permanently unlocked.

        Payment lapse: locks permanently locked.

      2. Spazturtle

        Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

        "I wonder whether "smart" door locks are subject to the same level of WTFery"

        Can't speak for all of them but all of the ones I have seen are, if they can't connect or authenticate with the server they won't cycle (so they will stay in their current state) and after a fixed period of time (or the battery dies/is removed) they will disable the local override function until they re-authenticate with the server.

        1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

          Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

          I'd bet on the LPL with a paperclip... irrespective of connectedness.

      3. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

        Re: I wonder whether "smart" door locks are subject to the same level of WTFery

        Solve that one and you could become a door magnate.

    3. Oglethorpe

      Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

      I've made great use of that useless hardware, bought cheaply. A lot of depreciated IP cams still output a local feed that can be piped into a VMS like Luxriot (free for the home) and, if you're feeling privacy-conscious, run on a separate network with only the VMS facing the Internet.

    4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

      It would depend on what you mean by subscription. If you pay a one-off price to buy something which is then dependent on a server somewhere it's almost certainly a Ponzi scheme unless the price contains a sum which can actually be invested in something that pays returns to keep the service going - an unlikely situation.

      If, however, the subscription is an ongoing payment by you for the service then it's a somewhat better chance if there are enough subscribers to make it worth someone's while to keep the service running.

      1. ITMA Bronze badge

        Re: Hands up all those who did NOT see this coming

        That latter part "If, however, the subscription is an ongoing payment by you for the service then it's a somewhat better chance..." depends on the manufacturer (or whoever they may have subscontrated the subscription bit out to if they've done that) playing ball.

        Do you know of any who have "played ball" or have the just said "Tough. It is proprietary - sod off".

  6. TimMaher Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Hives

    Apparently they are not very nice and can affect up to 20% of people.

    1. ITMA Bronze badge

      Re: Hives

      HIVEs = a bad rash.

      Quite appropriate.

      Now I wonder how many hackers (black hat or state organised) are wondering how many homes they can do a "Steel Works" on:

      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-62072480

  7. Jason Bloomberg

    Users, some of whom have invested four figure sums in Hive products

    Which is why I haven't.

  8. UCAP Silver badge

    You buy any form of smart device ...

    ... whether that is a TV, radio, security camera, or whatever, then that device will only work for as long as the manufacturer can be bothered to continue support for it. Since most manufacturers have the attention span of a toddler, that is not going to be long.

    But at least they will give you an offer to purchase the next iteration of the same crap.

  9. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    Net Zero

    So their vision of net zero is to force their customers to dump equipment they bought and installed and then buy new equipment that has similar functionality?

    Is this the famed net zero?

    It's not like you buy these sensors on a whim. Like, you know what? *bites a pear loudly* Imma slap a Hive camera rite there. They'll film me and imma feel like I am on telly! It's almost like a gawd will be watching me!

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Net Zero

      Correct, that's why they've decided to generate a tonne of landfill as they can't possibly run two sets of APIs. It makes sense during a climate crisis to make yet more incompatible tat and transport it from China to the UK. Anyone who doesn't throw out this version and by the next must hate the planet or something.

      Not supporting their products ought to be illegal but that PR nonsense quoted near the start of the article should mean they're fined double.

  10. Inventor of the Marmite Laser

    Diffusion PVR - Remember them? Killed off when their EPG service went TITSUP*

    *Terminated Instance To Supply User Programmes.

    It was quite a nice lite.box too.

  11. vincent himpe

    cloud computing ?

    CLOWN computing !

    i learned this long ago. i had a roku 1001 audio player. they pulled the plug on it and decided to go the video way.

    from then on : no more devices that need the internet.

    Surveillance ? get a NVR on-premises. yes you can contact it from the outside world , but there is no command and control server. the machine has its own harddisk and does not need internet to record. Amcrest

  12. andyace

    an even smarter home would be - home assistant, all devices local not cloud based tech at all,

    but one day MATTER should take care of it

  13. tatatata

    Well, at least they notified their users, unlike Insteon.

    I am always amazed by the people that completely rely on cloud services. Whether it is IoT like Hives, Insteon, Nest, Honeywell or many others, storage, like the Samsung Cloud or Microsoft/Google/Apple's equivalent, you should always have a back-out plan.

    Now for a worrying question: does your company have a back-out plan ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      back-out

      “Now for a worrying question: does your company have a back-out plan ?”

      Do you ? I appreciate the sentiment, but we don’t. My company relies quite heavily on the whole M365 thing, with added sprinklings of PowerBI. The general consensus here is that MS is “too big to fail”. I gave them the numbers, the cost for being able to back out at a moment’s notice was prohibitive compared to the benefits.

      If MS would fail, it would be a shit show for communication for a week or two, but we’d still be able to sell online, ship goods, get reports, design products and so on, since all business critical functions (or those that are deemed to be critical by the powers that be) are in our own data centers.

      At home I don’t need a back-out plan. If SMA would fail it would be annoying to miss reporting on my solar panels, and my heat pump would work less efficiently, but nothing would stop working. Nothing else requires some cloudy thingy to function, and I will keep it that way.

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: back-out

        If SMA would fail it would be annoying to miss reporting on my solar panels,

        You set up a cron job telling SbfSpot to read your inverter and stuff it in a local database; from that point you have several other ways available to present that data elsewhere.

    2. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: does your company have a back-out plan ?

      Behave! Of course not. Our company like so many others is hellbent on putting all our digital eggs into one cloudy basket. Driven - as ever - by exec's believing in ever-increasing savings that fail to materialise once they themselves have moved on to pastures new.

      Can't possibly achieve those nebulous saving if we also need to have a backup plan in case it all goes TITSUP.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I refuse to Buy anything with IOT

    Same as their previous kit that lasted even less time. I want the "smart" kit but I don't wnat anything connected to the internet. Trouble is it getting more and more difficult buying anything without IOT.

    Apart from the security issues and ease of monitoring by crooked governments, it is all a big con to resell the same old junk every few years and to force people into leasing everything.

    I dread to think what the life of an electric car will be in a few years time - any increase on the 3-5 year lifetime of a smart phone?

    In future all hardware will be leased and sold with a separate licence for each feature.

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: I dread to think what the life of an electric car will be in a few years time

      It's ok, no one's electric car will be driveable because they'll all be plugged in feeding the grid, as that is now the legally mandated answer to where all the wonderous renewables power goes when the sun doesn't shine and the wind doesn't blow.

      The upside is everyone's annual mileage will be really, really low, insurance should be dirt cheap because of that, and the roads will be empty :)

  15. elenora

    Sign of the Times - Short-Termism

    Fits in nicely with the way we are governed. Rely on everyone having short memories - Promise everything, deliver nothing and keep changing the boss and company name every few years .

  16. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

    This is one of many reasons not to use any IoT devices that require an external server to work. If I can't make a camera/alarm/doorbell/fridge/whatever work by connecting it solely to my internal network (with secured tunnel access from outside if needed), then I'm not buying it.

    1. jake Silver badge

      "If I can't make a camera/alarm/doorbell/fridge/whatever work without connecting it to ANY network, then I'm not buying it."

      FTFY

      1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

        To be fair, alarms, doorbells, and fridges can all manage quite well without networking, as they have done for years. But I'd be reluctant to get a "traditional" CCTV camera these days, if only for reasons of practicality. I'd still never connect an IP camera directly to the internet, though.

    2. rototype

      This is one of many reasons not to use any IoT devices FULL STOP

  17. mark l 2 Silver badge

    Jawbone fitness tracker bands all became unless overnight when they went belly up and the servers got turned off. Which taught me not to rely on anything that replies on cloud based services to work.

    I only own one 'smart' device that relies on the cloud and that is a LED bulb, I did look at how easy it would be to jailbreak it and install an open firmware on it, but it appears that it involves destructive drilling in to it, to get to JTAG headers, and since it only cost me a a fiver i'm happy to leave it as is for now as id probably break it.

    1. heyrick Silver badge
      Happy

      I'd buy another one for a fiver and have fun hacking the bugger.

      1. jake Silver badge

        "I'd buy another one for a fiver and have fun hacking the bugger."

        Personally, if such a bulb was actually needed in that location, I'd shit-can it, and buy another bulb that doesn't require such a connection. Probably for less than a fiver.

        Hacking for hacking's sake is all fine and dandy (and for the most part I'm all for it!), but I value my time more than learning something about a proprietary bulb interface that'll I'll never need again.

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge
          Devil

          Hacking for hacking's sake is all fine and dandy (and for the most part I'm all for it!), but I value my time more than learning something about a proprietary bulb interface that'll I'll never need again.

          Quite likely someone has already done so. Downside is that the instructions are presented as a video, with a lot of irrelevant blather and the crucial bits whizzing by at warp speed.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What utter balls

    "As a smart tech brand in the middle of a climate crisis, we know the focus needs to change"

    What has that got to do with switching off existing support?

    Creating more landfill and obsolescence?

    Are they implying that their existing products are so inefficient they need to be axed for the good of the planet?

    It is moronic beyond words.

    Yet again, IoT is a mugs game for consumers

    1. Captain Boing

      Re: What utter balls

      "Are they implying that their existing products are so inefficient they need to be axed for the good of the planet?"

      if only...

      they are implying that their existing products ... need to be axed for the good of their profits

  19. aldolo

    a short law...

    "after making a product inoperable you must release enough information to revive it"

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: a short law...

      Upvote at least ULLONG_MAX times.

      1. skswales

        Re: a short law...

        You've just wrapped it back to zero ;-)

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: a short law...

      Well given I suspect most of this tat will be covered by patents, perhaps we give a choice:

      Support the products until the licenced patents expire ie. 20 years, or release information under an open-source/creative commons licence with royalty-free rights to patented technology.

      1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

        Re: a short law...

        Almost all patents will piss-poor obvious stuff anyway. As in "the obvious way to implement it". The novelty is in inventing a "need", not actually implementing their shit.

  20. Warm Braw Silver badge

    The hardware might be strong

    It very often isn't and it's not just internet-connected stuff: there were constraints in early DTT receivers that effectively bricked them and let's not get started on DAB/DAB plus.

    The reason analogue TVs and FM radios had longevity was a public commitment to standards. Without that, all these devices are waste-in-waiting.

    1. Timbo Bronze badge

      Re: The hardware might be strong

      "there were constraints in early DTT receivers that effectively bricked them"

      In 2009, Freeview changed the data block size (IIRC) when they "updated to the NIT (Network Information Table), which some receivers could not accommodate" (info from wiki). so earlier "big box" TVs with built-in Freeview were bricked.

      The TV could still be used, if you used an external set top box (Sky, Freesat, Freeview) to feed a signal into the AV input.

  21. bigtreeman

    open source discontinued products

    This is one reason we have open source.

  22. Terry 6 Silver badge

    The goose that lays the golden egg

    At some point the buying public will start to get the message that these things aren't trustworthy. Once a few people have friends and family that have been screwed over by different product ranges the message will get through.

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: The goose that lays the golden egg

      Nice dream, but there's a sucker born every minute, and the world is brimming with enough stupid suckers to keep buying this shite indefinitely. The ones that suffer a bad experience - and actually learn from it - are more than outweighed by the Legion of Morons (tm).

    2. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: The goose that lays the golden egg

      My finger is hovering over the downvote button (but have not pressed) purely for the massive disconnect from reality.

      A sufficient number of people don't think any further than "oh shiny". That's why the companies concerned can get away with offering a mediocre reduction off one of their own products, even when any discerning customer should run in the other direction. But... oh shiny.

  23. JBowler

    Should be (c) not (r)

    >The hardware might be strong, but all too often the cloud behind them is less so. ®

    Well, despite the title observation that this is not a registered trademark in any sane country, good point, worthy of copyright, nice use of plural hardware to annoy us yanks.

    You didn't once mention vapour. Good on ye. Leave it to the trolls.

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: Should be (c) not (r)

      "nice use of plural hardware to annoy us yanks"

      What would you write, "hardwares"?

    2. Ben Tasker Silver badge

      Re: Should be (c) not (r)

      > Well, despite the title observation that this is not a registered trademark in any sane country, good point, worthy of copyright,

      You're reading that good point on The Register who append the (r) symbol to the close of all their articles ;)

  24. howieb2001

    I have quite a few of their gadgets for heating and lighting but the leak sensor which has been surprisingly useful will die next year. Relieved that when we decided to install some security cameras last year we chose Eufy.

    This is no way to treat customers.

    1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

      This is no way to treat customers.

      But it is, admittedly not what I would call a good way, but still it is a way (and lots of companies get away with similar ways of treating customers).

  25. M.V. Lipvig Silver badge

    And once again

    my initial distrust of depending upon a company's willingness to provide support after the sale is proven. My Honeywell thermostats continue to work with no idea an internet exists. The only internet connected items in my house are my router, 2 laptops and 2 cell phones.

    I wonder how the cops will feel about this, considering they're piloting a new law allowing access to privately owned internet cameras. Will they charge companies that stop supporting IoT cameras with obstruction of "justice?"

  26. Potemkine! Silver badge

    Greenwashing

    Or how ecology is used to (try to) force people to buy new stuff and generate tonnes of e-waste.

  27. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    Very good for the environment, for sure, with mountains of obsolete plastic devices.

    Massive class action lawsuit?

    1. Wade Burchette

      Yeah, nothing says you care about the environment like purposefully bricking old devices which will end up in landfills.

  28. Richard Pennington 1
    Devil

    Hive branching out?

    I hear that Hive is also a ransomware gang. Are they branching out, or are there two separate Hive minds? And which does more damage?

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Hive branching out?

      Maybe we can call Ender to take out the Hive?

  29. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

    I've got a Hive Thermostat. It's pretty crap. It overshoots the target temperature every time. It can't be difficult to make it "learn" how long before target it should switch off.

    I'll be getting a Honeywell or something when I move.

  30. Binraider Silver badge

    IoS : selling you more consumer crap you didn't need more regularly, to keep the landfill biz in dough.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Clouds

    Isn't that the definition of a cloud? When the wind changes it blows away and is never seen again. If you're lucky it hasn't had time to piss on you.

  32. amcc1

    Right to Repair?

    How about extending 'Right to Repair' legislation to cover IoT devices. After all, if a device requires some server to function, then it feels like an argument could be made to say that it's broken if the server isn't up and the 'part' required to repair it would be the server software, which the supplier should be obliged to provide.

    Right to Repair seems to be gathering momentum in several jurisdictions, albeit with varying levels of success (https://www.wired.co.uk/article/right-to-repair-uk). Maybe this could be a relatively simple add-on, though I'm sure the suppliers will be reluctant to share the extent to which their devices are calling home and their server software mining our data. Still, obliging them to put software into the public domain that provides the core functionality when they advertised the product seems like a good thing.

    Much as I'm not particularly impressed with them, as a previous commentator mentioned Logitech eventually seemed to do the right thing when they stopped selling Squeezebox players https://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.php/Main_Page

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Right to Repair?

      How about: massive breach of the trade descriptions act. Items purchased in good faith, sometimes at considerable expense, rendered landfill on a whim by the manufacturer, thus unfit for purpose through no fault of the user.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If we had real lawmakers

    This kind of shit would be illegal and IPv6 would be ubiquitous so the promise of reaching your IoT devices *directly* over the internet would be real.

  34. Martin-R

    Had enough of Hive a year ago

    Great system in principle but lousy implementation even with the cloud data... Binned it a while back, switched to Drayton Wiser which is far more flexible and works locally - no cloud required. It also offers nice add ons such as connecting a smart meter to the system so I can see actual usage and cost in the app.

    And another vote for Eufy doorbell and other cameras - just works, local hub, no cloud

  35. Richard 51

    Another lesson that "smart manufactuers should not be trusted

    A couple of years ago I invested in Hive technology after buying a house with a Hive thermostat, I then realised I was totally dependent on their servers and the small box they were connected to. I started my journey and now have many sensors and devices connected to my own server running home assistant, including the last of my Hive products which work flawlessly with Home Assistant. If anyone needs persuading this is the right way to go Hive is a lesson for all. Checkout https://www.home-assistant.io/

  36. localzuk Silver badge

    Odd business decision

    Why not sell the tech to someone else? They could then carry on supporting it, maybe for a small fee to keep it running in perpetuity? Rather than the rather un-green "bin all our kit" route? Hardly going to help net zero is it?

  37. Michael Strorm

    "We've made the tough decision..."

    "...to discontinue our smart security and leak detection products"

    Big brave you.

    "Tough" for your customers more like, who didn't have any choice in the matter anyway. Not so much for yourselves who chose to wash your hands of supporting something you *designed* to require your support, but stopped caring about because it wasn't bringing you any fresh income.

    Especially as you get the chance- sorry, excuse- to sell them more disposable-by-design shite.

    Anyone else hate that formulaic, weaselish style of PR speak that turns something like this into a self-aggrandising excuse to act like *they're* being Big Grown Ups Making Hard Decisions Because They Have To- and not because they chose to do something self serving- and bearing the pain, when it's their customers being forced to suffer?

    Ugh.

  38. Kurgan
    FAIL

    People deserve this shit

    If people is still buying home automation kit that work with "cloud service", then they deserve it. Every time a lot of hardware goes offline forever I have a small orgasm. I'll keep my mechanical switches.

  39. AceGrace

    I've just bough a blink doorbell and cameras. That doesn't need a subscription and can record video onto a USB stick.

    It does need a blink account for the phone app.

    Not sure if that is OK or not really.

    1. ITMA Bronze badge

      Ok so can you access it any other way than the "Blink" app and associated account on your phone?

      Preferably that does't depend upon an account on anything outside of your home network.

      If not, you are still stuffed if they close down the account back end.

      1. AceGrace

        True. Maybe something open source would come along to support the hardware

        1. ITMA Bronze badge

          If the manufacturers care to release the information necessary - which usually they won't.

  40. Ali Dodd
    Mushroom

    This is British Gas (centrica) of COURSE they will screw you, should've been a given.

  41. Michael Habel Silver badge

    Are you happy owing nothing? If not, why not?

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ripe for hacking

    I wonder how long they will continue the registration of the domain name used. I'm sure that no miscreant would register it and take over the devices! (They did use and enforce certificates, right?)

  43. Engineer2001

    Have to wonder if the real reason for discontinuing these products is because their TLS certificates are due to expire and there is no automatic update mechanism in the firmware :)

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I Wonder

    I wonder if the real reason these products are being discontinued is because they have contain a TLS certificate that is due to expire and they have no means of updating them in the field. They wouldn't be the first company to just stick in a certificate with a long expiry date and not both implementing an update mechanism.

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