This article contains content that is written like an advertisement. (March 2021)
|Original author(s)||Paulus Schoutsen|
|Developer(s)||Home Assistant Core Team and Community|
|Initial release||17 September 2013|
2021.9.7  / 18 September 2021
|Written in||Python (Python 3.8)|
|Operating system||Software appliance / Virtual appliance (Linux)|
|Platform||ARM, ARM64, IA-32 (x86), and x64 (x86-64)|
|Type||Home automation, smart home technology, internet of things, task automator|
|License||Apache License (free and open-source)|
Home Assistant is a free and open-source software for home automation that is designed to be the central control system for smart home devices with focus on local control and privacy. It can be accessed via a web-based user interface, via companion apps for Android and iOS, or using voice commands via a supported virtual assistant like Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa.
IoT technologies, devices, software, applications and services are supported by modular integration components, which not only include native integrations for local connectivity protocols like Bluetooth, MQTT, Zigbee and Z-Wave, but also support for controlling proprietary ecosystems if they provide public access via an Open API for third-party integrations. After the Home Assistant software application is installed as a computer appliance it will acts as a central control system for home automation (commonly referred to as a smart home "hub", "bridge", "gateway", "controller", or "coordinator").
Information from all entities it sees can be used and controlled from within scripts trigger automations using scheduling and "blueprint" subroutines, e.g. for controlling lighting, climate, entertainment systems and appliances.
In July 2017, a managed operating system called Hass.io was introduced which made it easier use to use Home Assistant on the Raspberry Pi. It allowed to manage, backup and update the local installation and introduced the option to extend the functionality of the software with add-ons.
An optional subscription service was introduced in December 2017 for $5/month to solve the complexities associated with secured remote access, as well as linking to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Nabu Casa, Inc. was formed in September 2018 to take over the subscription service. The company's funding is based solely on revenue from the subscription service. It is used to finance the project's infrastructure and to pay for full-time employees contributing to the project.
In January 2020, branding was adjusted to make it easier referring to different parts of the project. The main piece of software was renamed to Home Assistant Core, while the full suite of software with operating system and management system that runs on the Raspberry Pi was renamed to Home Assistant.
Home Assistant is supported and can be installed on multiple platforms, these include single-board computers (like example Hardkernel ODROID, Raspberry Pi, Asus Tinkerboard, Intel NUC), operating systems like Windows, macOS, Linux as well as virtual machines and NAS systems.
On officially supported hardware platforms like the ODROID N2+ and Raspberry Pi 3/4 single-board computers, the installation requires flashing a corresponding system image onto a microSD card, eMMC, or other local storage from which the system can boot. It is possible to use Home Assistant as a gateway or bridge for devices using different IoT technologies like Zigbee or Z-Wave, necessary hardware can be mounted onto GPIO (Serial/I2C/SMBus), UART, or using USB ports. Moreover, it can connect directly or indirectly to local IoT devices, control hubs/gateways/bridges, or cloud services from many different vendors, including other open and closed smart home ecosystems.
In December 2020, a customized ODROID N2+ computer appliance with bundled software was introduced under the product name "Home Assistant Blue" as an officially supported common hardware reference platform. The same package is also referred to as "ODROID-N2+ Home Assistant Bundle" when sold without the official custom-made enclosure. It comes with Home Assistant OS pre-installed on local eMMC storage, a power-adapter, and a custom Home Assistant themed enclosure. Home Assistant founders made it clear that the release of official hardware would not stop them from keep supporting other hardware platforms like the Raspberry Pi series.<
In September 2021, Home Assistant developers at Nabu Casa announced a crowdfunding campaign on Crowd Supply for pre-order of "Home Assistant Amber", a new official home automation controller hardware platform with Home Assistant pre-installed, as the spiritual successor to "Home Assistant Blue". "Home Assistant Amber" is designed to be an appliance and its internals is architectured with carrier board (or "baseboard") for a computer-on-modules compatible with the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 (CM4) embedded computer as well as include an integrated M.2 expansion slot meant for either an NVMe SSD as expanded storage or an AI accelerator card, plus an onboard EFR32 based radio module by Silicon Labs capable of acting as a Zigbee Coordinator or Thread Leader (Thread Border Router), an well an optional variant with PoE (Power over Ethernet) support. The most otherwise notably features missing on "Home Assistant Amber" an HDMI or DisplayPort to connect a monitor, (which is likley due to it like most smart home hubs being purpose-built to act as a headless system), as well as lack of onboard Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and a USB 3.0 port. Shipping of "Home Assistant" is targeted for June 2022, provided the $140,000 funding goal for the crowdfunding campaign is met.
The front-end dashboard is called Lovelace (named after Ada Lovelace), which offers different cards[clarification needed] to display information and control devices. The design language is based on Material Design and can be themed with global themes. The interface is fully customizable using the integrated editor or by modifying the underlying YAML code. Cards can be extended with custom resources,[clarification needed] which can be integrated manually or using HACS (Home Assistant Community Store).
Home Assistant acts as a central smart home controller hub by combining different devices and services in a single place and integrating them as entities. The provided rule-based system for automations allows creating custom routines based on a trigger event, conditions and actions, including scripts. These enable building automation, alarm management of security alarms and video surveillance for home security system as well as monitoring of energy measuring devices. Since December 2020, it is possible to use automation blueprints - pre-made automations from the community that can be easily added to an existing system.
Home Assistant as an on-premises software, with its focus on local control for the purpose of privacy in combination with its state as an open-source application, has been described as beneficial to the security of the platform, specifically when compared to closed-source home automation software based on proprietary hardware and cloud-services.
There is no remote access enabled by default and data is stored solely on the device itself. User accounts can be secured with two-factor authentication to prevent access even if the user password is known by the attacker. Add-ons get a security rating based on their access to system resources.
In January 2021, cybersecurity analyst Oriel Goel found a directory traversal security vulnerability in third party custom integrations. The issue got disclosed on January 22, 2021 and finally patched with Home Assistant version 2021.1.5 available from January 23. There is no information about whether the vulnerability has been abused.
Awards, reception and reviews
Home Assistant took second place in 2017 and 2018 for the Thomas Krenn Award (formerly Open Source Grant), later winning first place in 2019. Home Assistant also won an DINACon award in 2018 for their "Open Internet Award" category., as well as being a nominee for the same awards in 2013
Home Assistant has been included in a number of product and platform comparisons, where, like many other non-commercial smart home hubs/gateways/bridges/controllers for home automation, it has often in the past been criticized for forcing users into a tedious file-based setup procedure using text-based YAML markup-language instead of graphical user interfaces. However, newer versions of Home Assistant have also made it simpler to perform the initial installation as well as basic configuration of most integrations from scratch via only the main graphical user interfaces and more quickly get started compared to earlier versions, as the core development team have for the latest couple of years been working on making Home Assistant more user-friendly to new and less advanced home automation users, with most features being available from the GUI. Thus the team have increasingly moved its configuration settings from its YAML setup files to the latest revisions of its web-based graphical user interface. GitHub's "State of the Octoverse" in 2019 listed Home Assistant as the tenth biggest open-source project on its platform with 6,300 contributors. In 2020, with 8,162 contributors it was listed second place in the list of Python packages with the most unique contributors.
- List of home automation software
- List of automation protocols
- Index of home automation articles
- Home automation for the elderly and disabled
- Home automation
- Building automation
- Smart speaker
- Lighting control system
- HVAC (Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning)
- Access control
- Smart lock
- Security alarm
- IP camera
- Video surveillance
- Digital video recorders
- Smart device
- Internet of things
- Web of Things
- Smart environment
- Smart grid
- Ambient intelligence
- https://github.com/home-assistant/core/releases Home Assistant Core releases on GitHub
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- Official website
- Community forum
- Discord server
- Facebook community
- Subreddit on Reddit
- Twitter @home_assistant