Firmware & Software Updates


#1

Since our last email update, we’ve made some great progress with the Lockitron firmware. We’re now consistently updating devices over-the-air (OTA), an important milestone. This means that we’ll easily be able to send new updates down to all of the Lockitrons in the field, whether it’s for a bug fix, or a new feature. Lockitron updates automatically as new updates are made available, so you don’t need to worry whether or not your unit is ever out of date.

Power management is an important issue that we are currently working on. A few bugs in the initial firmware caused Lockitron to remain awake at all times, draining its batteries in days or weeks rather than months. Lockitron is designed to intelligently sleep when you are less likely to use it - whether that’s when you’re at work or it’s in the middle of the night. Lockitron will always wake up periodically for remote control and instantly for access with Sense. We haven’t fixed all of the issues here yet, but it is our next priority after ensuring OTA updates work flawlessly.

Stay tuned, as we’ll be posting more under the “Updates” tag.


#2

I saw someone ask about how the sleep function effects control from remote location? For instance, if I am driving out of state and realize I forgot to lock my door, will it remain unlocked even if I send a command to lock? Or will it lock once it wakes up for its periodic control function but remain unlocked until then?


#3

The latter - Lockitron won’t be asleep for more than several minutes at most and it will carry out queued commands when it wakes up (so you can lock it remotely). If you’re waiting outside your door and Lockitron is sleeping (and you aren’t accessing it over Bluetooth Low Energy), you can knock your door to wake up Lockitron’s WiFi connection immediately.


#4

Since my battery keeps dying, how / when should I prepare for the firmware update push? Will I miss it if its dead and hasn’t woken up before you made the push?


#5

Thanks for the reply. Having it accept the command a few minutes later doesn’t sound too bad.


#6

Same question here. I’ve stopped putting batteries in mine as it burned through four sets of AAs in the two weeks I had it - and I honestly don’t want this device costing me a boatload more money in batteries just to get updates.

I imagine you guys will post when the power update is out?


#7

I have a suggestion… I assume since you a have the ability to access the device using Bluetooth Low Energy that this would wake up the device as well. So why not have a device that utilizes that same technology attached to your wireless router, then when a person sends a command over the internet it sends a low energy signal to wake up the device and then sends the command to initiate the command to lock or unlock the device. I know there will be some lag time but it won’t be several minutes. I know that WigWag has a Bluetooth dongle that attaches to the main sensor that might be able to initiate that command. I just see this delay of several minutes to be a real deal breaker with most people. Who wants to walk up to the door with a bag of groceries and have to kick it with there foot to initiate a command they sent from there phone before they got out of there car.


#8

@Sean_Bryant @cashadle - If your Lockitron is offline when we send out the power management update, your unit will automatically download it the next time Lockitron’s awake. We’ll let you know when this happens, so feel free to have your Lockitron offline if it’s eating through your batteries too fast.


#9

We will be cross posting this on our blog on Facebook but we have some great news on the firmware front.

Over the past week we’ve been programming, testing and bug fixing a massive firmware update as well as infrastructure updates. These new updates solve most of the issues surrounding infinite loops that would keep Lockitron awake, make Lockitron immediately responsive when knocked and significantly improve battery life.

Additionally we are pushing an updated verison of the iOS app that lets you know to knock the door when Lockitron’s WiFi is asleep. An update to the Android app is underway as well.

While the updates should deploy automatically, units with the oldest firmware might need some help manual help from us.

Next up is enabling Bluetooth Low Energy connectivity on Lockitron and in our iOS app (Android BTLE support is very high on our priority list).


Shipping Updates
#10

So now that these battery issues appear to be solved… what needs to be done before shipping?


#11

An update on the Bluetooth Low Energy beta - we’ve pushed out the beta to a few folks and despite a few bugs, things are looking good for deployment into production. We’ve already pushed another beta update to the iOS app to resolve these bugs as well as some changes to the firmware.

Here’s what we’re working on:

  • Making BTLE instantly responsive (sometimes there is a several second delay in the beta we are working on eliminating)
  • Logging lock and unlock operations carried out by hand or key
  • Solving some bugs around when a jam state is triggered and subsequently recovered from
  • Testing new code that solves issues with certain brands of deadbolts not fully locking or unlocking
  • Resolving certainly conditions where Lockitron may enter an update loop which drains significant battery power

Shipping Updates
#12

Is that last piece for the battery fix actually going to resolve the whole 2 week battery life I’ve been getting on average?

I really want to like my Lockitron, but it’s so hard when I can barely use it… =/