Introducing Home Assistant Cloud


#44

i constantly get unable to connect to cloud. any tips? it’s has worked once or twice but then just signs out constantly


#45

Love this cloud service (been using it for at least a month and it’s working very well for me). I’m honestly looking forward to paying for this service (please keep it $5 a month or less) so that I can support continued development of Home Assistant. Have the subscription plans been ironed out yet?


#46

Sorry to sound like an old record… but I hate subscription services and have recently cancelled several. I would way prefer a one off ‘buy in’, if it does evolve to a paid service.


#47

I’m with you on that. ongoing payments are just a pain


#48

Just out of curiosity, what would a fair price be for a service that you got to use forever? (Not trolling: Since servers cost money to run every month, what single lifetime price do you feel would work?)


#49

I like plexpass model
$4.99 per month
$39.99/1 year,
$149.99 lifetime

Basically heavy discount for upfront
Price Model could change at any time really if needs change.


#50

Lifetime of what? Your life? The life of the Plex organisation? - All things must pass, and what if plex goes broke, or the guys behind HA get busy with life and give it up.

I am happier paying per month, and if the service stops, I stop paying.


#51

Thank you for work. Will this become tool for remote access? Really interested in using UI out of house. Sometimes it is critical, like watching cameras when you are out of home, controlling the temperature by sensors and thermostats to avoid issues with water pipes in winter…


I just can not use ddns because my router can’t open only one port.


#52

HomeAssistant Cloud is an ongoing service that has ongoing costs. A one time payment does not work unless it is enough to generate returns needed to cover ongoing costs, including inflation.

If it is $5 a month, an annual subscription would need to be at least $55 (1 month free) and a life time subscription would need to be expensive enough to generate about $50 a year (somewhere between $1,000.00 and $2,000.00 depending on what one expects for an investment return).

Giving 4 months free ($40) and letting one pay for 2.5 years and get lifetime service cannot possibly be sustainable.

Lifetime service not tied to hardware with a fixed lifespan, cannot work otherwise.


#53

Plex does this so must be doable but not sure if this is at loss to generate subscribers and monetize through users somehow or if this is at $0 profit.

Not sure what cost would be ($100 -$200000) and not sure what profit is desired but this was not point. Point was, if possible and not ridiculously priced it could be good.


#54

From your examples it looks like you have an assumption that the cost of cloud services will remain constant over time. When actually the cost of compute and storage units decreases over time due to Moore’s law and economies of scale created by organisations moving from self-hosting to the cloud.

Personally I agree with others here that yet another monthly sub is not desirable.

I also think that $5/mth is massively overpriced, and the language being used to describe it confuses ‘donation’ with ‘cost to provide service’, which are two different business models.


#55

Business Model is key.

If goal is profit than my apology, charge away.
If goal is not profit, lifetime or other pay methods can make sense.

Thanks for pointing out Moore’s Law @CJB


#56

Actually, my assumption is based on their statements that they plan to increase the services provided over time, which means that costs are likely to remain fairly constant since even as rates what they cover would increase, keeping things at a wash.

There is a great moment if one takes a tour at Pixar. The guide shows off the render farm and says that in 1995 when Toy Story was made, it took 8 hours to render a frame. He or she then says: “Given Moore’s Law” how long does it take to render a frame today?

The answer is, of course, at least 8 hours (some are even longer). As machines have gotten faster, the complexity has increased. That, coupled with inflation, is why I expect that they need a constant stream of revenue.

In addition, they have said that some of the cost will go to supporting staff to ensure the project continues without suffering from burn out. This is also an ongoing cost that requires a constant revenue stream.

To be clear, nothing they currently offer as part of Home Assistant Cloud is of interest to me, but I am happy to help provide $60 to maintain software I think has much more value than that.


#57

Plex monetizes their customer in several ways, including advertising and “special offers”:

As a subscriber, you get exclusive access to Plex Pass Perks, which offers discounts and deals, early looks, and VIP experiences from our partners. AND you get to use the newest features before everyone else! We add promotions all the time, so be sure to check back often.

Personally, I would rather not have my information be sold.

Your statement is correct that it is all about business model. I have no idea if the Home Assistant developers plan to run this as a non-profit, or a for-profit, so I cannot discuss their plans, but I can say that the software is worth more than $60 a year to me and I am happy to support it.


#58

i think Plex has other revenue streams besides the plex pass, that how they can sustain it


#59

@aidbish You are correct. They make a good deal of their money licensing the software to hardware manufacturers (NAS vendors mostly). In addition, the PlexPass does not generate much server overhead as most of the services it enables run on your hardware, not on their systems.


#60

Ah, thank you for the info about the services changing in future; I wasn’t aware of that and that makes sense.

And I’m super-jealous if you got to go on a Pixar tour… those guys are next-level brilliant. I suspect those particular stats are out of date now (reference), but your point is still valid if the HA cloud complexity will increase substantially over time.

My hope is they will separate the “support our development” message from the “get the HA Cloud service” offer, though. One is a donation, the other is a service charge, and there are different contracts and obligations that come with each.


#61

@CJB That article is talking about the re-rendering for Toy Story. The internal average estimate is still about 8 hours a frame (although there were several that went more than an order of magnitude more over that for Incredibles 2). As always, these are estimates.

The problem with a “donate to support our development” message is that people rarely do contribute, and it is really hard to budget based on random donations. The model of a subscription service that provides a value to the user and a value to the project seems reasonable to me. For those worried about a monthly service fee, prepay one year, and if you do not care when your service stops, do not renew.

To be clear, I would like a non-auto renewing annual fee (even without a discount) to prevent the case where I stop using something and take months to realize I am still paying for it.

That would solve the problem for those bothered by the subscription itself rather than the $60 a year to help support the ongoing development.


#62

Has anyone considered a pricing model similar to Amazon’s Lambda services? You are charged based on the number of executed commands, memory usage and execution time instead of a flat fee.

An example pricing model: Pay $10 for 1,000 cloud based executions.

A new sensor can be created that can provide the subscriber the number of executions remaining. The subscriber can add more executions at any time or let it lapse without automated payments.

The subscriber can tune the number of devices exposed to the service including removing very chatty sensors from interacting with cloud to keep the cost at a reasonable usage rate.

This model will provide anyone access to use the cloud at a manageable cost. They can increase their spend to have more devices interacting with the cloud. Subscribers are not locked into paying a monthly fee when they use the cloud once a day or a few times a month. Frequent or very active users will be charged more.

I would not oppose a one-time fee for account and payment setup.


#63

Okay I must be an idiot… Where and how do I sign up for the Community Support package??

Note:
Idiot or not, if I am having trouble finding it, maybe others are too.