The new Gen 3 has a couple of very welcomed new hardware features; buttons for local control and better radios. These are both good. There are two software bits that are concerning though; removal of GPH from Gen 2 FW/SW just prior to the announcement of Gen 3 and Weather Intelligence +.
The only reason I can see for removing the GPH calc from Gen 2 is to prompt some Gen 2 folks to upgrade to Gen 3 to get back a feature that they previously had (and paid for?). Gen 3’s flow meter is likely considerably more accurate but Rachio seems to believe it is not more accurate enough to encourage people to upgrade to new hardware - so they removed it.
Perhaps there is a hardware bit that prevents Rachio from offering WI+ on Gen 2 devices. In all of their talking about it though, they’ve never mentioned anything about a more powerful processor or anything else that is required for WI+ and that is not present on Gen 2.
Here’s the problem. When most of us buy things like this today in 2018 we expect firmware and software updates and we expect the hardware we’ve paid for to support every feature that it’s capable of. My MacBook, iPhone, and other devices all get every update they are capable of given their hardware.
I have a nearly 4 year old Tesla Model S and with each release of Tesla software, approx every 8 weeks, I get every new or improved feature that my hardware is capable of. I have Auto Pilot v1 hardware and while I don’t get features that can only be supported with v2 or v2.5 hardware I get every feature that can be supported with v1 hardware. My wife’s car is newer than mine but its capabilities are static while my car keeps improving. BTW, she’s planning to trade her car in for a Tesla this summer.
My cameras, the oven in our kitchen, our TV’s, and many other things are similar - they all get every update and every new or improved feature that the hardware is capable of. No games of what will or will not be available on what. Even our lightbulbs (Lifx, Hue, etc.) get every update and feature that they are capable of supporting.
Rachio should be the same. When new software is released then every device, from Gex 1 to Gen x, should get the same software and every new feature it is capable of supporting. Acting otherwise is like one of the old line antiquated companies we’re all leaving behind. Likewise, existing features should NEVER be eliminated from an older product in order to boost sales of a newer one.
I like Rachio and will probably begin using their controllers. IMO there is nobody else with as good of capabilities. However, this and some other things have left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth that were there better options or when there are better options may swing me to them rather than a company that I’m not sure I can trust.
I hope that I’m wrong and there are better explanations.