The current interface makes it very complex to configure remote controls bought specifically to interface with HA actions. This hits the simple single/double/triple tap buttons like Aqara and Sonoff, actual remote controllers, and more different stuff like the “new” smart knobs which are Tuya-based or Ikea Symfonisk dial.
The current method is:
- you configure your device with HA as you would. Easy.
- you go to Config > Automations > New. Somewhat hidden, since this is the next logical step…
- find your device on the list, then try to figure out which triggers are the ones you want (since many are not button-related, like going offline or battery levels)
- then you setup whatever else you need for that button/action; in the simplest model, an action like turning off the bedroom light.
- rinse and repeat: for something with many actions, you have to duplicate that into a bunch of other automations… one… for… each… button… And you can’t even reuse the previous automation name
My proposal is to identify the device as a remote (something which you interact with physically, instead of commanding it from HA) and offer a better UI to configure all its triggers (separate from usual automation tasks, such as battery checks).
This reminds me of controller configuration screens in video-games, but of course that’s way too complex. However, taking that as initial inspiration and simplifying to a doable point, those remotes could have a special screen which lists all their “button-related” automations and allows us to easily configure an action for each of them, without needing to go through the complete automation flow, setting names, going back to the automation list, etc.
A “simple” screen which lists the triggers and includes a button besides each of them to configure a simpler automation (in a modal with only the conditions and actions?) would be enough.
Possible complications that can be left aside:
- not possible to identify remote-like devices; if that’s so, I guess every device could have a set-automation-for-its-triggers button on the device screen. It wouldn’t hurt!
- not possible to identify button/action-related triggers; then, I guess adding all triggers to that list wouldn’t hurt either, although it makes sense to go through the current automation flow to setup more complex stuff (which you would want a recognizable name, several settings and whatnot).