In this video we’re gonna look at using the Echo Show second generation as a Smart Hub. I’m gonna use this Sengled smart bulb to show you how to connect devices. Hi my name is Craig. Here I do tech videos. This is part of my weekly Echo series. Check out the description if you want to learn more about the Echos. I’ll also include a guide on how to set up devices using it as a smart hub. Please, use those links they definitely help the channel out. This is episode 4 of my 2019 echo video series. If you haven’t, check out this playlist if you want to see 2018 videos. Also, I’ve changed the name of my device to echo so hopefully I don’t trigger your device at home. The second generation Echo Show can be used as a Smart Hub. You can also apply this to the Echo Plus 1st generation and the Echo Plus 2nd generation.
This Show and the Echo Pluses have a ZigBee hub built into them. With the second generation Show and the second generation Echo Plus you can also use local control in the event that you lose an internet connection. So what is ZigBee? ZigBee is a low powered low cost wireless mesh network standard. With ZigBee protocol you can control smart bulbs, smart switches, smart plugs, sensors and other devices. Some of the devices that use the ZigBee protocol include Philip Hue bulbs, Samsung Smart things, Wink Hubs, IKEA bulbs, GE appliances, LG Smartthinq and a lot of others. This here is the a Sengled bulb. It’s a reasonably priced bulb that you could find on Amazon. I will do another video talking more about this bulb. It uses the ZigBee protocol. So we’re gonna get this set up, walk you through the steps and see how easy it is. Also, something to note before we get started, the echos that have a ZigBee hub will only do smart lamps, smart plugs and smart bulbs. Some of the other ZigBee sensors and things will not work with the built-in hub. There are two ways to connect device to your echo.
The first would be using the app and the second would be using your voice. I’m gonna walk you through using the app first. But, no matter what method you use you’re gonna have to first power up your bulb. So let’s start with that. Once your bulb is powered up the next thing you’re gonna want to do is open up the app. Go to the smart devices in the bottom corner, hit the plus sign and then choose add a device.
From here you’re gonna pick what kind of device you’re adding. You can see there’s some popular brands listed on top. We’re going to add a light. If you scroll down you can pick what kind of light you do want to add. We’ll choose one of the Sengled lights. The next step would be to put your light into pairing mode by powering it off and then back on. From here you’ll press discover devices. At that point it’s gonna look for your device and now it’s found the device. So wait the 45 seconds till it does connect up. A new lights been discovered we’ll set up the device. Let’s go ahead and choose a group to add this into. We’ll add it to the office group. Add to the group. First light is setup and ready to use. We’ll hit done. This is now called first light.
If we want to go in and change the name of it we’ll go under our lights. Find the first light, select it, go to the corner, will edit the name of it. We’ll call a new light for now. Hit done. This tells you a little more about the light it’s enabled now we can back out of this. If we use the app here we can adjust the brightness of it.
Set it to whatever level we want. You can also turn the bulb on or off using the app. Now it’s finished. You can leave the app. Let’s use our voice. Echo turn new light off. Okay. Echo, turn new light to 25% . Okay. Echo turn new light to full. Okay. That’s it. it’s easy control. Also a note, in here if you don’t want to hear okay after everything. You can go into your account settings and turn on brief mode. I don’t use brief mode because in my house the confirmation is good for the rest of the family and brief mode affects all your device’s globally.
But, it will get rid of that okay. But you see it’s that easy to set up a device. Let’s look at setting it up using voice. Now I’ve reset the bulb so it’s no longer connected to the hub. So it’s as if I just pulled it out of the box. Echo discover new devices. Starting discovery this will take 45 seconds to connect your lights or plugs just turn them on now, for sensors power them on by removing the battery strip. For locks and other products, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to put them in pairing mode. We saw the light flashed there letting us know that the it’s starting to discover it. We just have to wait now for it to recognize that it did find it. I found first light and you can control it by saying turn off first light. To rename it tap the name on the screen. Okay, let’s rename it. If you don’t have… Let’s wait, let’s just add it to a group now.
I’m using my screen to try to do this. Let’s add it to the office group. It’s got a checkmark next to it so it has been added to that group. Let’s back up now. We could have used the menu on the echo show, but if you’re using an Echo plus you could use your voice to rename it. Echo rename first light. Okay, what’s the new name? Test. You want to rename first light to test right? Yes. Okay I’ve renamed first light to test. Echo add test to living room group. I couldn’t find anything named living room. Did you mean living room lights? Yes. Okay, I have added test to the living room light group. See you can use your voice to add it to a group.
But, now let’s just call up the light again. Echo test off. Okay. Echo test at 50%. Okay. That’s how you set it up. Weather you use the app or use your voice. Let’s look at the pros and cons of using the built-in hub. The pros. One you don’t need to buy any additional hubs. Such as the hue hub, smart things, or wink hub. Two, you have local control in the event that you lose an internet connection.
Three would be all your devices can share the common hub or if they don’t require a hub you can just use Wi-Fi and it’s all still controlled under your show. Now there are some cons in my eyes. The first would be your devices are tied in to the echo show hub. So that means you’re not going to be able to use homekit or Google assistant to control the devices that the hub is controlling through the echo. The only other real con that I see and using the built-in hub versus a manufacturer’s hub is you don’t necessarily get all the same features when you’re using the echo hub. You can change the color of your lights at their color changing bulbs. You can dim them, turn them on and all of that.
But in the case of my other lights around here that are philip hue bulbs and they’re using the hue hub, i’m able to use the hue app and i’m also able to get deeper into some of that functionality and create scenes and sync it up with music and other options there. I’m not limited to what the echo can do. So in my case I like having the manufacturers hub instead and that manufacturers hub also keeps it open so at times I could use my home pod and Siri. I could play with it with Google assistant. I think some of it comes down to a personal preference. If you know you’re not going to use other devices to control your lights and sensors and plugs this makes perfect sense. You use the built-in hub. It does give you that local control in the event of an internet outage. One less thing to power up and one less thing that needs an internet connection. Those are my thoughts on using the echo show as a hub. That’s how you set it up it works the same way for using an echo plus.
Nice and easy like most things echo related. What do you think of this? Do you use an echo device with the built-in hub? Do you prefer manufacturers hub or do you avoid them all together and stick with Wi-Fi only devices? Let me know in the comment section. If you like this video, please hit that like button. If you haven’t consider subscribing and click that Bell to be notified at the next video. If you’d like to help support the channel check out the Amazon link in the description. If you use it Amazon will kick us back a little. there’s also merchandise store and Patreon account if you’d like to help support the channel.
Thank you for watching this. Have a great day. Bye. .
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