Nubryte Touchpoint system provides a simple ‘smart’ solution for homes.
I’ve had a strong interest in connected technology for quite some time now. I love having devices work together and make life easier for the people using them. I’ve had ‘smart’ lightbulbs and thermostats for years and love to see continuing technologies emerge from the folds of innovation. One such device/system is the NuBryte Touchpoint. NuBryte Touchpoint is a smart home and security console for the whole home. It was launched at CES 2016 with very positive initial reviews and it’s designed to work hand-in-hand with a mobile app (iOS or Android) while it’s connected to your home’s WiFi network.
As a product reviewer, I want to be transparent about my experience with NuBryte. I had the opportunity to test out the Touchpoint system using the demo box that the company sends out to reviewers. I was able to test out the majority of NuBryte’s functions but was a bit limited in set-up and operation. That being said, I will outline my experience as best as I can.
As I mentioned, I received a demo box of the NuBryte Touchpoint system for review. The demo box comes with two separate Touchpoint units to mimic a set-up between two rooms in your home. The kit also includes a set of three light bulbs for the single switch and the dual switch options – both of which are included in the demo box. I can’t comment on the ease of installation since I was using the demo box, but I can say that the touch display snaps quite easily onto the backplate, which provides power to the unit. Once you have power going to the Touchpoint unit, you go to the Setup Wizard located in the Settings menu of the NuBryte. NOTE: I didn’t have a user manual provided with the demo box. I did look one up after testing, but my initial set-up was just a little different than described in the user manual. Once you are connected to WiFi (has to be 2.4 gHz), you are ready to start using it. One thing I did notice is that if you have multiple units, you have to connect each one individually to your WiFi.
NuBryte makes it possible for you to control any lights that are connected to the Touchpoint system. The NuBryte system is limited though because you can only use lights that are wired to the system. So, if you have WiFi enabled bulbs (like Philips Hue), you can’t connect them to the NyBryte Touchpoint. When I found that out, I was a little discouraged because it makes the NuBryte less of a smart hub and more like a separate device. Aside from that piece of information, the response time of the lights when the commands on/off were entered on the console was remarkable. There is a nice dimmer control included, too. I’m not entirely sure how quickly the lights would work in a normal set-up, but in the demo box, they came on very quickly.
This was one of the most intriguing features of the system to me. I have several WiFi cameras throughout my home, but I really liked the idea of a motion-enabled security system, which is what you get with NuBryte. Basically, you set a four-digit code for the system and then select a countdown time to arm the system. Once the system is armed, it will trip when motion is detected. I tested this out and found that not only did it work, but it was also very sensitive. I barely moved sitting in front of the demo box and the alarm was tripped. Now, the security system is purely an alarm noise and notification to your mobile device (if it’s connected to the account). I could see an update in the future where a dispatch could be notified as well since the system is connected to the internet.
The intercom function is a little non-traditional. It works, but you are essentially recording a voice memo and then sending it to another unit in your home. If you have a large enough home, I could see that being useful, but if you are just trying to call to a separate area to get someone’s attention, it almost seems easier to just walk to that room. I like that this was a feature that was integrated but think that it could use some updating to be more real-time.
Overall, I was impressed with the functions of the system, but I did run into one big issue. The mobile app didn’t connect to the Touchpoint Units. My phone was connected to the same network as the NuBryte Touchpoint system, but the app would never show that there were compatible devices on the same network. Now, this could have been a limitation of the demo box, but because of this issue, I wasn’t able to really experience the full capabilities of the system. I think that NuBryte might have some really nice possibilities, but it needs to grow and evolve with newly expanded partnerships (right now it only works with its own system and doesn’t connect to other smart devices). I hope to see more from it in the future.
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