Week 3

I finally contacted Quirky directly and was able to get some questions answered.

This time I will start with the positive.  Quirky was able to acknowledge my e-mail within 24 hours, which was very nice.

The solution was very peculiar though. They said that the answer was to connect to a device that I did not own, and that it will actually solve my spotter issue. This is clearly a hack, so I am even more confused now than I was before in regards to the process of releasing a hardware/software product.

Here was their response to my e-mail:

“1. On your phone/tablet settings,  turn brightness all the way up and auto-bright off.  Then take off the phone case and kill all the apps running in the background.

2. Take the batteries out of the Spotter completely and use the cord.

3. You are going to go through the provisioning flow through the Porkfolio option instead of theSpotter option. So go to add a product, then go to FUN, then click PORKFOLIO (we are just pretending we are adding the Porkfolio, even though we are adding the Spotter. It will still populate in your app as a Spotter).

4. Before you go through the provisioning flow, you need to reset it. Before you reset it, have theSpotter unplugged, right before you reset it plug it in. To reset it you are going to click the question mark in the top left on the provisioning flow. Then follow those steps.

5. Once it is blinking orange then go ahead and try to pair it. Make sure it is in a dark room, and once you go through the process and the LED light flashes green, unplug it and plug it right back in, and then wait.

If it doesn’t work keep trying it going through the whole process again. Let me know if you can’t get it connected after all of that. “

I bolded the portions of the “fix” I found questionable.  The most obvious issue was that it would have never been possible for me to use the Spotter had I not contacted Quirky.  Using the application for a different product to activate the spotter is a solution that is not intuitive.

I also had not notice the “question mark” until after I contacted Quirky.  The font of the (?) is very small in comparison to the text in the rest of the Wink application.  After clicking the (?) I was able to see a big red “RESET” button.  This would have been helpful in the beginning.


Ok so now I will explain what happened when I followed these instructions. I reset the Spotter, and I attempted to pair the device with the Porkfolio option. Though the light on the Spotter did turn green for the first time since I received the Spotter.  The Spotter actually did not show up under my applications as mentioned.

I then repeated the process three times, with no results, resetting each time.  Then something interesting happened. I hit the reset button, and after resetting, the Spotter showed up under my device before I even tried to pair it.  Finally, success! Weird success, but success anyhow.

At that point, the Spotter worked.  Here is what I observed.

The temperature, humidity, sound detection, and vibration worked just fine.  The light detection is “Unknown” which is what people on the Forums have also observed.

The spotter does have an interesting interface, it shows the detections as a linear timeline.  Though I am surprised that I do not have the option to view the information in different ways (graphs/charts).

For the motion detection, the Spotter shows the history of detections. I can not pull up the history of any of the other sensors. It shows “No new activity” even though it does give a time for the very last activity.

I can set up “robots” to activate process according to different parameters, which is nice.  I think that this is meant more for some of the Wink apps other products, because the Spotter does not activate anything, it just detects sensor information.

I can see how  I could change the temperature of my room with a robot message according to a low Spotter reading.

Overall, I would not purchase a Spotter unless it was considered ready for use by the masses.  I am happy being an early adopter, but I don’t have a strong enough interest in the Spotter to deal with the inconsistencies.  I definitely not give it to anyone unless I was there to set it up for them.



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