Wink Logo
star star star_border star_border star_border
LAST UPDATED: May 19th, 2021
Wink was founded in 2014 by now bankrupt company Quirky. Since then, the company has developed new partnerships (Canary) and has been ultimately acquired by Flex (formerly known as Flextronics) in late 2015. Because of this turbulent start, experts have predicted that Wink will go out of business, yet, the company continues to gain market share, mainly due to the vast number of products which the Wink Hub is able to control. Wink does not offer professional installation or 24/7 monitoring of their system or products, and puts all monitoring into onto the individual user by using their smartphone. Winks' app is available for Android and Apple mobile devices and is free to download and to use. Some customers have reported challenges with pairing various devices with the Wink hub, while others state that they had no difficulty doing so. This discrepancy may be a result of user inexperience, devices which are not designed to be compatible with the hub or even the placement of the devices in the home relative to the hub, which can affect the range of the device.

Top Ranked Companies

thumb_up

The Good

  • Expansive compatibility
  • Popular brands supported by Wink*
  • Languages supported by Wink
  • Comprehensive automation solutions

Expansive Compatibility

Wink's hub and extensive list of compatible products allow users to completely customize their home. Among the over 100 compatible products are lighting, temperature, video cameras, door locks, garage door openers, appliances, and window treatments. Users can also integrate voice control into their app, which is unique to the Wink Hub.

Popular Brands Supported by Wink*

  • Bali
  • Chamberlain
  • GE
  • Honeywell
  • Kidde
  • Kwikset
  • Leviton
  • Lutron
  • Philips
  • Rachio
  • Rheem
  • Schlage
  • TCP
*Not all products by these companies are compatible with the Wink Hub

Languages Supported by Wink

  • 433 MHz RF
  • Bluetooth
  • Lutron
  • WIFI
  • ZigBee
  • ZWave
Wink is working with Amazon as well to integrate Amazon Echo. Additionally, the app works with iOS and Android wearables.

Comprehensive Automation Solutions

Wave users save on the monthly monitoring fees, since they self-monitor their systems. At the writing of this review, the hub costs around $100 from several sources. Additional accessories range from around $40 to $250:
  • Overflow water sensor ($40)
  • Tripper window/door sensors ($40)
  • Real-time streaming cameras ($200)
  • Smoke and CO alarms ($50-$100)
  • Garage controllers ($100-$129)
  • Keypad door locks ($199)
  • Propane gauges ($50)
  • Irrigation controllers ($249)
Users can opt to install an in-home touchscreen controller, which usually requires professional installation, as recommended by Wink. One of the popular items in home automation is Hue lights, which are easy to control with the Wink app, but like some other items, the official product app allows more control options. Wink boasts that their system is able to learn the normal routines of users' homes and alert users to anything out of the ordinary. In addition to this, the system uses IFTTT (If This Then That) technology which allows users to customize their system to perform multiple actions simultaneously. (Turn on lights when door is opened, etc.)
thumb_down

The Bad

  • Can be expensive
  • Installation and inventory issues
  • System limitations

Can Be Expensive

Pricing for the Wave Hub has risen significantly during the company's 18-month lifetime. Pricing for the hub began at $49.99 for an initial launch of the product. This may be due to the company having experienced much upheaval in its infancy. Purchasing products individually can become quite costly, and the packages offered by Wink are minimal.

Installation and Inventory Issues

Users report varying degrees of difficulty installing the systems themselves - namely in how easily the products are registered and recognized on their systems. There does not appear to be a common thread, since problems are reported sporadically, and with different platforms (Android, Apple, etc.) Those purchasing Wink should be prepared for the worst-case scenario, and needing multiple attempts to pair various products, but this is not necessarily the case all the time. Customers have complained about the starter kits being frequently sold out. At the writing of this review (January 2016) each of the three available starter kits were unavailable.

System Limitations

The hub needs a Wi-Fi network in order to connect. It also only works on a 2.4GHz network, so if users have a 5GHz network, it won't work. While it's not uncommon for home automation hubs to require Wi-Fi, it's worth noting that the product becomes completely useless if the power or Internet goes out. While it's nice to have the option of the Wink Relay (the mountable wall control device), a lot of the purpose behind automating your home gets lost when you have to walk to one location to control things. At $300, it costs the same (or more, especially because they suggest you get it professionally installed) as a nice tablet, so there's not a lot of incentive to go this route.
gavel

The Bottom Line

The general trend towards a DIY home automation system gives reason to believe that Wink is in the proper niche. While there are a few glitches in the system, the array of compatible products make Wink stand above most of their competitors. Wink excels at making their product widely compatible with other companies' products and selection is quite impressive. It is notable that on the company's website that there are several products which are out of stock. Customers may find that getting Wink products is difficult. The fact that Wink remains viable after so much uncertainty speaks to the quality of the product overall and customer satisfaction. For those looking for a DIY home automation solution with the ability to add several products, Wink is a good choice for home automation.
Was this content helpful?
thumb_up Yes thumb_down No

Star Rating

2.0

star star star_border star_border star_border

2 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 grade

0%

4 grade

0%

3 grade

50%

2 grade

0%

1 grade

50%

Sentiment Criteria

Value

star star star star star_border

Quality

star star star star star_border

Service

star star_border star_border star_border star_border

Trustworthiness

star star_border star_border star_border star_border
cancel

Filter by:

arrow_drop_down

Sort by:

arrow_drop_down
info
star star star star_border star_border

Mark Troxel Provo, UT

I have been a user of Wink for a number of years. I bought a second generation hub, and used it to connect our thermostat, lights and video camera. My home automation was probably simple by some standards but it provided the levels of automation that we needed. One of the things that I appreciated most was the addition of additional devices to make the Wink Hub more usable. I had installed some dimmer switches that were not supported when I first bought the hub only to find out a couple of years later that they had been added to the system. No additional work other than adding them to the profile. I would give the Wink Hub more stars, but they went from being a free service by purchasing their equipment, to a monthly paid service. There was not grandfathering original buyers, they just shut off the hubs if you didn't pay. Suddenly all of my investment was held ransom for not paying a monthly fee. My personal feeling was that they could have issued a new hub with additional features and charged for that, but they decided to cut everyone off. The good is the ease of use, the bad they don't care about how long you have been a customer, it what you do for me now, and that is not a company I can recommend.

1 year ago