Direct communication between devices


Normally, triggers such as wall light switches or motion sensors send a signal to Homey, and then a flow send a signal to lamps or other devices that is supposed to react to the button being pressed.

I am wondering if it is possible instead for the light switch (z-wave/zigbee) to signal the lamp(s) directly, and in addition send a signal to Homey so other flows can react as well as updating status of the devices. Is this even possible with these protocols?

The benifit of this would be:

  • One less signal should possibly be even faster, leading to less delay
  • If the Homey is down, the lights can still be controlled by the wall switch

Yes that’s possible for both protocols. With zwave it is called direct association, with zigbee light link or something like that.

For z-wave you can edit the advanced settings of a device most of the time. It varies per device and per vendor what the possibilities are and this limitations. You can’t mix secure and insecure paired devices.

With zigbee it should be implemented in the core if I understand correctly which isn’t the case with homey. But if you have an ikea gateway or hue bridge, they have it implemented. No direct connections to homey though.

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Not the full solution that you are looking for but might be interesting.
The philips livingcolors gen 2 &3 are compatible with hue.
This also means:
You can connect a livingcolors remote to hue
And at the same time connect the same livingcolors remote directly to the hue lights.
And connect these hue lights to hue too

Direct control of the hue lights via the livingcolors remote
Control the same hue lights via home (using the hue bridge)

In terms of speed, direct associations are not always faster than communication trough Homey.
In terms of backup scenario (when Homey is down), this is the way how I have my heating controlled. I have flows controlling the heating in Homey as well, but there is also direct association between thermostat and heater controlling the heater relay directly. In case Homey is down and direct association is missing, heater would be running nonstop or house would be freezing.