Is Oomi the all-in-one smart home system we've been waiting for?

Maybe. After the bugs are cleaned out...


There remain quite a few bugs however. Just one small example – the controller "home page" has a blank top-left. We have no idea was is supposed to be in there but pics on the Oomi website suggest it should be a pretty colored box displaying the time and temperature.

Likewise, the smartphone app is a little clunky and needs some design work to bring it up to the standard of, say, the Nest app. If it looked like the Oomi marketing materials, we'd be happy, but it falls short.

Another example of a bug: We turned on the color strip using the tablet controller, and turned if off with the phone app. But then it wouldn't turn on again using the phone app – only the controller.

Lots of small things like this can only ever be discovered and ironed out with large-scale testing; it's part of making a complex product. But, as a consumer, if you have paid good money for a system, you just don't want such bugs to exist.

Taken together, if you are on the fence right now about whether to get such a system, we wouldn't recommend buying the system just yet. The bugs would likely frustrate you. That said, as we have experienced, they all seem to be software bugs and the company is actively squashing them with updates.

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If you have already decided that you want to edge into having a smart home setup, the Oomi is definitely worth consideration. It certainly avoids having to deal with the current hodgepodge of smart home gear out there right now, some of which work together, some of which don't.

Here is a system that works as a coherent whole. It is easy to set up. Really easy to set up. It works. It has some great design features. If you like the idea of tinkering and putting together various scenes and automations yourself – you will likely love this. And, it is not only cheaper than Apple's system but has all the components you need available now.

Getting to cost – the company offers three "starter kits" focused on whether you're going for security, lighting or general automation, that come complete with an Amazon Dot – for $599. At the time of writing, they are on special offer - $459. The sensors are $40-50 a piece but are cheaper if you buy them in bundles.

So, as with all smart home gear, it is not cheap. But the Oomi shows real promise. And, on occasion, when handling the black tablet and tapping a button that does several tasks at once, saving you from having to get up and turn things on and off manually, it does feel a little bit like the future. ®

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