Unhappy with Sense

I have had sense for a while now 20 devices sensed! out of which 4 are refrigerators, multiple heat sources. Just no way for me to know whats what! I opened a support call - no luck. I am now wondering why i bought this device. I like being involved - but not as a permanent research project. How to make most of the 20 devices… or should i just give up!

I would take the time to help Sense nail Down the identity of the devices.
It doesn’t make you a permanent research project but does require some intervention for a limited time.

@samwooly1 I appreciate your ongoing support. I just have this “bag of devices” I dont know what to do with!! Any tips on how to “nail down the identity” of the devices. I have two smartplugs - 1 from Amazon and the other from WeMo. But both dont work with Sense. If there is a way to “mine” this to make it useful - that’d be great - I thought support would help. But they did not - I am sorry to say. I know you connected me to the manager - I am sure she is great in many ways, but AFAIK “just for me” she is not as committed to my (aka customers) success - as YOU ARE! So please do not change…

Hello @Krishnan
I certainly understand the frustration of having “a bag of devices”. When my life is not busy, hunting detections down is kind of fun but when we have a lot going on (moving one child out of state) I just want Sense to figure it out on its own.

I mainly use on/off alerts to help identify devices. I set the toggles in the app to show the device on the timeline and to alert me every time a detection turns on. Take today where I have “washer” throwing alerts at me. When I get the notification, I go check if the washer is running. If not, I ask the wife, “what appliance did you just use?”. I was able to nail down my appointment Asher today that way but it doesn’t always work. A lot of times neither of us can figure it out and it may take a few days or even a couple of weeks before we are able to match a detection.
When we first get a detection, they aren’t always for a single device. We may get a “heat” that is triggered by an iron, hair curler and hair dryer. The more use their is, Sense will get better at attributing to just one of them.
It really does take patience, not something I’m good at by the way. When I see a new detection, I expect too much accuracy right off the bat. I’ve tried to learn that a new detection is more a starting point for Sense instead of a firm, set in stone detection.
I have about Half a dozen detections right now that are not identified. Instead of feeling like there is an urgency to get the identified, I let Sense continue to learn. The longer I “ignore” these and let them build, the easier it gets to identify them later.

1 Like

@Krishnan,

Sorry to hear your difficulties. Here are a couple of helpful pointers on how to:
Match Sense detections with actual devices in your house.

Figure out the Always On devices in your house.

2 Likes

@kevin1 and @samwooly1 already nailed most of what I was going to say, so I won’t repeat them.

I’ll add my $.02 as a Sense user (let me try and take my ‘Community Manager’ hat off for a minute): Much of the utility I’ve found with Sense hasn’t even come from device detection. Certainly, the biggest monetary savings I’ve netted have come from just using a combination of the real-time Power Meter with Goals. I caught an issue with my heat pump that saved me a significant sum of money as well as whittled down my Always On to between 30-50 watts. As a whole, it’s just made me more cognizant of the costs of energy use in my home (no more leaving the Playstation on 24/7 for the minor convenience of a quicker boot time).

Certainly, it’s great when Sense nails all of the detections in my home perfectly, but that’s not the only useful aspect. Still, I get your frustration. Device detection is not perfect and we don’t purport it to be. 100% detection is very unlikely and some types of devices are particularly challenging to detect: low-wattage consumer electronics, variable-speed motors, and some EVs. In other cases, similar devices can be tough to separate, like those common heat sources and motors.

I’d echo the suggestions above, but also be sure to take advantage of the other features in the meantime. Real-time data enables device detection, but real-time data also enables a slew of other features as well that are no less useful.

1 Like

My full-on meta thoughts in this regard, which repeat every time someone expresses their disappointment in unmet expectations of Sense detection, go something like this:

Fully-formed, useful technology that is immediately magical to everybody is actually always from the future and doesn’t exist yet. Fusion!

Old technologies no longer seem magical.

Real and useful technology in the here-and-now pretty much always (actually always) takes time to mature and not just for the obvious reasons that technologists need to seemingly endlessly tinker with it … technically-minded and non-technical humans using that technology are actually part of it because the technology is as much about learning (in both directions) as it is about some magical birth. The human lifecycle comes to mind.

All technologies die from both a human and a Universal perspective.

3 Likes

I’m curious to see if you’ve had any improvements in the last week or so?
I’ve also got the detections that I’m having trouble getting identified and haven’t had as much time as usual so I’m just letting Sense build more data and history for them.
Trying to be patient.
I understand the frustration with smart plugs that don’t work with Sense. I had many smart plugs before Sense and not a single one of them was compatible. I’ve not figured out a way to make them useful when it comes to Sense although I still use them for the ability to turn thing on and off, mainly on the timer function.
I was totally against buying new smart plugs to work with Sense because my thought was “Didn’t I buy Sense for detection?”. It was a big move for me to spend yet more money. I did it, and I’m glad I did. It is completely worth it! I’ve only used the smart plugs for devices that are known to never be detected (low wattage and vampire loads).
For anything that has a remote possibility of being detected, I don’t use the plugs and some of the smaller things that were hard to detect have finally appeared.
I guess I’m suggesting that if there is any device that you are really wanting to know about, a compatible smart plug is definitely worth buying.
I’ve only used the T-P Link HS110 and HS300 with Sense and those are the ones I’d recommend.

1 Like