Voice control of Suntura Tracker

Discussion in 'Installations' started by Tuicemen, Feb 18, 2017.

  1. Tuicemen

    Tuicemen Solar Guru

    I recently received an Amazon Dot and fell in love with it almost instantly.
    I'm a home automation guy from way back and have played with voice recognition for some time.
    However the recognition with Alexa and the Dot is fantastic.

    I already had started to add a park feature to the Suntura using a very inexpensive $7 low voltage Wi-Fi module.
    This allows me to park the suntura from any where over the intenet using the companies Smartphone App.
    The only draw back was it was cloud based meaning if the internet was down no control!
    That's not good! I knew there were ways to flash the devices firmware to enable local control but was hoping the company would see the need for local control. Recently they announced they were going to provide Alexa integration. Very cool but local control would have been better.
    Tired of waiting for local control I flashed the Wi-Fi module. This still gives me control from anywhere via internet but I now have local control.:cool::)

    With local control I now wanted Alexa control! ( I know never happy):rolleyes::).
    Cool thing is the firmware I replaced with intergrates with the Smartthings app (provided you have a SmartThings hub) I don't have a hub.:(
    This didn't stop me as I'd been creating some software to utilize with Alexa and the BWS systems HA-Bridge( already capable of Alexa control).
    Simply adding the url of the Wi-Fi module into the HA-Bridge for a on and off command I was able to control the Suntura park via a Alexa voice command: "Alexa turn on Sun Tura Park" or "Alexa turn off Sun Tura Park":):cool:
    TomT likes this.
  2. Tuicemen

    Tuicemen Solar Guru

    I've been playing with what the Ha-Bridge will respond to from Alexa,
    Since this is a hue emulator the help be says only on/off/dim commands will be forwarded.
    I almost always dig deeper.
    I found a few different words work the best so far for this application is activate/deactivate
    So although on/off sill work saying "Alexa, activate Sun Tura Park" or "Alexa, deactivate Sun Tura Park" also works.;):)
  3. Tuicemen

    Tuicemen Solar Guru

    I managed to take a video of Alexa parking the Suntura. I didn't include unparking as the file would have been to lar
    here is an edited version of the video with the process sped up
    Alexa Video
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2017
  4. Tuicemen

    Tuicemen Solar Guru

    I started a DYI mod using the Windy nation RF remote controller this will allow a bit more control then my Wi-Fi mod.
    But could I possibly have Alexa control this?

    Back in March I picked up a cheap Broadlink RM Pro to learn my IR AV stuff. This will learn RF remotes as well ( in the 433-310 frequency) But will it learn the Windy nation remote?
    The Broadlink is controllable via Alexa in several ways, everything I have taught it is controllable.
    My RF controllable stuff is mostly X10 even my security system was learnable.:cool: ;)
  5. Tuicemen

    Tuicemen Solar Guru

    I was successful at learning the up & down button codes for several Broadlink apps.
    I'll share the codes & templet for the econtrol app to its cloud sharing and Post the codes for RM Bridge later here.
    Although there is an Alexa skill that interfaces with the Intelegent Home Center it doesn't currently support RF for alexa Control:(
    However using the RM Bridge app I can send RF signals via Alexa using HA-Bridge or the Smartthings Hub:cool:
    Since I can control things via Alexa from my city home to my off grid place and the other way I may pull out the sonoff wi-fi module and just go with the remote.
    I have no need to control the Suntura with Alexa from anywhere else but I suppose that is possible using the Alexa app or a companion app.;)

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