I installed this Smart Wi-Fi garage door opener in a few minutes

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/03/12/i-installed-this-smart-wi-fi-g.html

Is that a thing a lot of people want to do for some reason?


Oh… works with Alexa and Google Home…

“Hey Google, open Mark Frauenfelder’s garage door please”.

I yanked the wifi module out of mine.

I don’t see the upside of extending these company’s surveillance capabilities to my garage door, even if they manage to keep the credentials out of (at least) private hands. Your confidence in your state’s government is remarkable; as is your confidence in the HR procedures of both companies.


How’s security on it? Has it been audited by a third party? Is it tied to a cloud service? Will it work without an internet connection? How does it positively know that a door is opened or closed?


Coming here to ask the same things. If the security of this is unproven then this is to be avoided unless there’s proper documentation showing they’ve done their homework.

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A lot? I don’t know.

In my situation I have two cars and a single car garage and the second car parks on the driveway. Additionally, in my hood car windows are busted out all the time and having a garage door opener in the car is a security risk.

I also have friends come and go for various reasons and it would be nice to have this abolity when necessary.


If you really want one of these, keep your eye out for https://www.amazon.com/Smart-Garage-Opener-Chamberlain-MYQ-G0301/dp/B075H7Z5L8

It regularly drops to $30 or even $20.

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Except you either live without google/Alexa integration or you end up paying many xs more for a monthly subscription. Frustrating gotcha functionality.

I used to live in a house with a garage that opened against a busy road. I couldn’t confirm I closed the door before driving off. I’d often arrive home to an open garage door. I wired up a raspberry pi but would have preferred to get something off the shelf (the only option I saw at the time was replacing the entire motor unit)

I never recommend “smart home” stuff just because. It seems to work best if it’s solving a unique grievance Otherwise, as soon as you hit the first bit of friction it becomes more trouble than it’s worth.


I use my mind, it’s a bit wonky when I’m stoned, but life is full of 50 / 50 chances.


Can’t use that in my parts. It is highly against the law to use a smartphone while driving (yes, foot on brake in my back lane is still considered driving under the law).

So nope. A garage remote with a thumbprint reader could solve lots of these security issues.

But when you come home and find your man-door kicked in, apps can’t stop that.


Easiest way to build a remote detonated bomb.

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My garage door has a remote, but it is kind of bulky. If I go out to walk the dog or check the mail or something it is fine in a shirt pocket, but if I leave it there invariably I’ll be leaning over something at home and click it and then need to go see if I accidentally opened the garage.

If it were on my phone it would be less bulk, I would more frequently have it with me, chance of accidental activation is almost zero.

Whats not to like? Other then being subject to lock out not just due to power failure, but also internet outage? Or being one more IOT device that might have crap security?

I am only tentatively interested in something like this because the range on my wifi is a lot better than the range on my garage door opener. There is a business near me that I am fairly certain interferes somewhat with the garage door’s remote frequency. My ability to reliably, remotely, open the garage door seems linked to the time of day.

Yes. A one car garage with two cars means one sits outside. Instead of keeping a remote in the exposed vehicle, my wife can tap her smart watch and open it.

Another use is a notification app that tells me when it’s closed or opened. I like getting a notification that the door closed and stayed closed after I left. It prevents me from driving away if something blocked the door while it was closing, causing it to reverse.

Another use is having a remote indicator in the bedroom. When I go to bed, if there’s a bright red light glowing, I know I need to close the door.

I’ve been studying how people use IoT things. I’ve found that even if something seems ridiculous or superfluous to me, someone else with a different perspective may think it’s the greatest thing ever. It keeps me from rushing to judgment that any IoT thing is junk.


“Ok Google, open the garage door”. Hands never leave the steering wheel.

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There is a whole community around getting these types of “smart” devices to work without Alexa or Google, or Chinese companies like Tuya. There are ways to reflash devices like these with open source firmware like Tasmota, even over-the-air without physically hacking them using open source reflashing software like Tuya-Convert. Once the firmware is replaced, they can be accessed via WiFi on your own LAN or VPN using the built-in web server, or even better, added to open-source home automation software like Home Assistant or OpenHab or Domoticz.

The point of all this is that BoingBoing could (should?) be selling home automation doodads that can be readily reflashed with open source firmware, or even better, already pre-flashed, and generally promoting the internet of things owned and controlled by us happy mutants rather than our corporate overlords.


" If you want to be able to open and close your garage door from your phone, and receive alerts on your phone when the door is opened or closed, this Meross Smart Wi-Fi Garage Door Opener is a good choice."

And in a couple of years, once it hasn’t had a security update in a while (if ever), anyone will be able to open your garage door from their phone. This is the new sharing economy!

Also, am I the only one who never saw the “convenience” of having to take out my phone, unlock it, scroll to the relevant app among dozens or even hundreds on the phone, open said app, find the relevant device in the app, then press a button to open/activate/whatever something rather than … walk a few steps and hit a switch? Whether it’s a “smart light” or a WiFi garage door opener or whatever, it seems like such a damn hassle. I get that stuff like this can let you do more than a dumb switch (like adjust the color/temperature of your lights) but how often do you actually need that?


And never forget the lessons we learned in the 80’s!!!