If a Rachio 4 were announced, what are you hoping for?

It has been over four years since the Rachio 3 was announced in March 2018. I am still using a Rachio 2 as it has served our needs thus far.

If Rachio announced a 4 tomorrow, then what would you hope to see in the announcement?

5/6 GHz Wi-Fi support. Sure 2.4GHz is fine for this device type and range, but having the option to modernize would be welcomed. Our Rachio 2 forced me to add a 2.4Ghz only SSID in our Ubiquiti gear as it wouldn’t connect if our 2/5 networks had the same SSID.

RJ-45 port. Wi-Fi works for the common consumer but I’d like the option of hard wiring. This would also help those trying to install in very remote locations.

More than 16 zones, even if that means logical merging of two controllers in software.

Fix “finish before sunrise”. No, this shouldn’t need hardware and is long overdue but I still want it. :joy:

Z-Wave support to support things like “if mud room door opens, then stop walkway watering if active.”

Direct web API access.

Have to go catch the toddler… feel free to add ideas.

Homekit. That would be something.

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Based on your list, I would like to see:

  • 5 GHz WiFi. IOT devices need to start leaving 2.4 GHz WiFi behind.
  • Hardwire ethernet option. Not sure if this will be of any real value, but it would be nice for those inclined to use it. It might also make installation easier in locations on larger properties, such as a remote shop/shed, with poor WiFi coverage.
  • Simpler app interface, making it easier for the layperson to set up. I know this isn’t hardware, but it is needed. I shouldn’t need a degree in irrigation and agriculture to set up my controller.

Otherwise, I think it pretty much does what is needed. I am still using a Rachio Gen 1 controller, and it works great for me!

Set the controller LED to be amber (instead of blue) when the unit is in standby mode.

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I’d like it to be able to run mostly feature complete without the cloud and definitely have API available on the local network.

Here are some of my suggestions:
A functional USB port for accessories such as USB to ethernet converter.
A dual primary transformer within the power supply with 110/220V voltage selection switch.
Dedicated 24v- terminals for S1 and S2 inputs.
A solid state relay on the power / common rail, capable of turning off outputs when powered by a DC power supply; enforced soak periods when DC supply is detected (allow solenoids to cool off).
A pressure sensor accessory, allow index reference and control over indexing valves (popular in Florida).
Manual rain / weather adjustment of historic data, in case obviously erroneous reading was received.
Real-time access to flow sensor data, via webhooks or standard API. Similar to what app shows during calibration.

Moisture sensor integration

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If someone is truely into home automation and have a Zwave network, they should already have a hub to control this, and Rachio can be made to talk with most hubs out there. Plus, unless someone has a very strong zwave network in place, the chance of it reaching the irrigation controller outside of in a garage could be tough.

In long term, new protocols like upcoming Matter (developed by Apple, Google and Amazon), would allow inoperability despite the wireless standard. It wouldn’t require Rachio to act as a hub, but should it be integrated, allow the hub to control Rachio and visa versa.

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I use HomeSeer today with dozens of Z-Wave+ devices. Signals strength has so far not been a problem. All the line-powered devices also act as repeaters, know their neighboring devices, and setup multiple routes back to the hub. In open air the signal strength is rather impressive. My Rachio is currently in the garage among line-powered Z-Wave devices so it’d be an easy reach.

I would prefer not to have to make Rachio work even though you certainly can. Today, I have a plug-in which relies on calls back to the Rachio web app to read controller/zone/schedule information. Native Z-Wave integration would be welcomed to cut that out and not be beholden to the web app. But hey it’s a wish list so my wishes may not align with everyone else. :slight_smile:

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I’m on ST, and I agree, a strong zwave network is easy to get (I have probably 40 switches, 12 outets, spread across three structures on my property). I’m just looking at it through Rachio’s eyes. A basic DIY’er with limited knowledge on the subject gets excited to add a zwave switch to their patio light so they can do what you are looking for…but wonder why the zwave switch won’t connect to the Rachio 50’ away in the garage. Just sounds like a support nightmare.

My city has a winter schedule (1 day a week) and a summer schedule (2 days a week). I have 2 schedules which are used for this. But, I have to update the start and end date every year. The two schedules don’t seem to know what the previous schedule did for water, so assumes that the soil was dry, since it doesn’t know the zone was watered with the previous schedule

I would say full local control on the Rachio (either with WiFi/Z-Wave or ZigBee) would go against the business model of Rachio.

Saying that, I hope they give some local control. Either through API (preferably) or via an on-device webpage.

I can only speak for myself when I say I wasn’t suggesting local control replaces the cloud components, just an additional means of access/control. :slight_smile: We pay no subscription fees so after HW purchase the only value has to be our data.

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Rachio controllers are fundamentally cost reduced on the controller level. By the design all of the fancy stuff is handled in the cloud and only the schedule is sent to the controller.
It’s not that it’s against the business model, it’s more that controller is ignorant of zone settings, climate, or any other metric that makes it smart. It just knows when it needs to turn on next and for how long.

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Agreed and I don’t have a problem with cloud first control (which is why I bought the Rachio in the first place). But it would be nice to have a local option.

Ethernet and a functioning Apple Homekit.

make rachio 4 available to international users (that is 220V) with no unauthorized radio bands.

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But the current Rachio 3 “does” support HomeKit… :nauseated_face: