What is INSTEON?


What is INSTEON™?

INSTEON, developed by SmartLabs, is defining the future of the home control network with a revolutionary technology that gives you the power to control your home simply and affordably, while giving you more dependability and flexibility than any other home management system on the market. **See All Available INSTEON-Enabled Products Here.**

Award Winning
"INSTEON Has 40% Market Share of the Emerging Home Control Marketplace Says West Technology Research With New INSTEON Alliance Members OSRAM Sylvania, D-Link and Best Buy, 2007 Poised to be a Good Year for INSTEON" - West Technology Research Solutions Inc.Read More...

INSTEON is: affordable, reliable, simple to use. It is the world's:
  • Most affordable
  • Most reliable (near 100%)
  • Simplest to use (starter kit installs in minutes)
  • Best selling remote control & home automation networking technology.

What Customers are Saying About INSTEON
"I LOVE the Auto Link and spider features. What a huge time saver. I have a 4500 sq ft home that has been completely converted to INSTEON from X10. The Insteon technology is clearly superior..." (Read More Customer Comments)
- Mike, President, Kressa Software Corp

How does INSTEON work?
INSTEON's unsurpassed reliability is due to its dual-mesh network, which means that messages between devices are sent both wirelessly through Radio Frequency (RF) and through your home's existing electrical wiring. Every message is confirmed as it is received, and if any errors are detected, the message is automatically resent. The network is also redundant; every device on an INSTEON network receives and sends every message to every other device, so instead of stressing the network by adding more INSTEON devices, you actually strengthen it.
  • INSTEON sends signals both through the air (RF) and over the home's electrical wires (powerline)
  • Every INSTEON device has its own unique ID (similar to a serial address) so your neighbors can't control your home
  • Every INSTEON device is a repeater - so the signal gets through every time
  • Every INSTEON message is confirmed, or the transmitter will automatically retry until a confirmation is received
  • INSTEON messages take less than 5 / 100ths of a second to get through - so things turn "on" instantly (INSTEON = instant-on)
  • No central controller or networking setup is required - a simple plug-n-tap™ is all that is required to link one INSTEON product to another
  • X10 Ready - each INSTEON product can be given one or more X10 addresses allowing X10 controllers to control it as well as allowing it to be used as an X10 controller
  • For a detailed description of what INSTEON is and how it works technically please see http://www.insteon.net or http://www.insteon.net/pdf/insteonthedetails.pdf.
What are some popular uses of INSTEON?
Because INSTEON was developed specifically for home control and automation, the possibilities of an INSTEON network are limited only by your imagination and the types of INSTEON-enabled devices on your network. Let your garage door opener tell your kitchen lights to come on, or let the "play" button on your remote simultaneously close the blinds, dim the lights and turn on the surround sound. Don't settle for a smoke alarm that simply alerts you, insist on one that will illuminate your family's exit route. Whether you're looking for a basic lighting control system or envision a fully integrated and automated Home of Tomorrow, if you can dream it, you can do it with INSTEON.
  • Press a single button on the remote control next to your bed to turn off all the lights in your house
  • Create a dinner-time, party-time or other whole-house scenes
  • Create a pathway to safety for young family members by scheduling lights to turn on when the smoke detector is triggered
  • Reduce energy costs by setting fans to turn on and blinds to close instead of triggering the air conditioning when thermostats reach a designated set point
  • Receive an instant text message on your cell phone when a leak is detected in the basement
What is INSTEON used for?
  • Scene and remote control lighting
  • Security alarm interfaces and sensors
  • Home sensors (e.g. water, humidity, temperature)
  • Access control (e.g. door locks)
  • Heating and cooling (HVAC) control and management
  • Audio-video control
  • Appliance management
  • Fire alarm system networking
  • Exhaust fan control and networking
  • Irrigation control
  • Shade and blind control

Where Did INSTEON Come from?
INSTEON was developed at SmartLabs Technologies over 5 years of R&D and testing.

INSTEON Specifications

Powerline Frequency:131.65 kHz, devices auto switch to X10 band at 120 kHz
Radio Frequency:902- 924 MHz (ISM Band) (900 MHz is ideal for penetrating the structure of a home. INSTEON does not interfere with other devices)
RF Sensitivity:103dbm
RF Modulation:FSK
RF Range:150 feet, line of sight
Speed:10 messages per second, maximum
Supported Devices:16,777,216 (no limit on nodes per network)
Possible Commands:Over 65,000 (On, Off, Dim, Lock, Open, etc.)
Battery Power Consumption:Extremely low

What Products are Available?
  • Plug-in dimmers
  • Plug-in on/off switches
  • Wire-in dimmers - standard paddle design
  • Wire-in dimmers - standard toggle design
  • Wire-in dimmers with keypad
  • Wire-in on/off switches
  • Wire-in on/off switches with auto-off timer
  • Tabletop controller
  • Downloadable timer software
  • Home control computer software
  • USB computer interface
  • Serial computer interface
  • Plug-in signal extenders
  • Wire-in in-line dimmers
  • Wire-in in-line on/off switches
  • Plug-in sprinkler control
  • Plug-in contact closure
  • Security panel controller
**See All Available INSTEON-Enabled Products Here!**

How do I install INSTEON-enabled devices?
  1. Plug (or wire) in the INSTEON devices
  2. To "link" (allow a first device to control a second device)
    1. Press and hold the "ON" button on the first device for 10 seconds
    2. Press and hold the "ON" (or set) button on the second device for 10 seconds
  3. That's it!
Who is Making INSTEON Products?
Over 1000 manufacturers and developers are currently engaged with INSTEON, ranging from large manufacturers (RCA, First Alert, Broan NuTone, etc. ) to smaller developers. Products began shipping in 2006 as well as many products are under development and expected to ship during 2007.

How does INSTEON Compare with ZigBee, Z-Wave, HomePlug, Bluetooth and X10?
For a detailed comparison, please see the white paper comparison at http://www.insteon.net or http://www.insteon.net/pdf/insteoncompared.pdf.

ReliabilityBestGoodGoodOkGood Good
Every product installed makes network better YesNoNoNoNoNo
Physical Media2 RF Powerline1 RF Only1 RF Only1 Powerline Only1 RF Only1 Powerline Only
All Nodes Repeat? (True-mesh)YesNoNoNoNoNo
Simple, Router Free InstallationYesNoNoYesYesYes
# Nodes per Network16,777,216256 per controller256 per controller-8-
Can be Given X10 AddressYesNoNoYesNoNo

How Reliable is INSTEON?
Nearly 100%. Over 10 million signal packets were tested in over 100 homes across America. A near-perfect success rate of over 99.97% was measured. Each INSTEON message contains error detection, so lights turning on accidentally will virtually never happen. Each message must be confirmed or automatic retries will be made - making sure that your message gets through. Since every INSTEON-enabled product is a repeater, the reliability increases as you install more INSTEON-enabled products.

Perhaps the most remarkable thing about INSTEON is its affordability. INSTEONcan be integrated into any number of products easily and at a very low cost, so it will impact your life a whole lot more that it will impact your wallet. Other technologies claim to be affordable, but none of them get close to the price point that INSTEON-enabled products hit.

INSTEON messages get through in less than 0.05 seconds. Humans cannot see "delays" of less than about 0.20 seconds. Therefore, there are no visible delays when using INSTEON.

X10 Ready
INSTEON is also compatible with X10 devices, so if you've already started putting together a home control network, you don't have to start from scratch. It's advanced digital signal processing means messages of up to 14 bytes get sent blisteringly fast, and the number of developers in the INSTEON Alliance, currently over 1000, continues to grow. INSTEON-enabled products repeat INSTEON messages, but not the X10 messages. Simply put, INSTEON is on the move, and you're about to take control of your home. For good.

INSTEON was designed for messages to be repeated many times, X10 was not, making it impossible to repeat X10 messages numerous times.

Recent Awards
INSTEON technology may be new, but it's already turning heads.

CES Awards: Since 1989, the prestigious Innovations Design and Engineering Awards Showcase has given consumer technology manufacturers and developers an opportunity to have their newest products judged by a pre-eminent panel of independent industry designers, engineers and journalists.

  • CES Innovations 2005 Design and Engineering Awards: Shortly after its launch, SmartLabs walked away with a pair of CES awards. INSTEON technology was acknowledged in the Software/Embedded Technologies category, and the INSTEON SignaLinc RF won in the Integrated Home Systems category.

  • CES Best of Innovations 2007 Award: The SocketLinc recently received a 2007 Best of Innovations Award in the Home Appliances category.

    EH Awards: The prestigious "Products of the Year" awards are chosen from hundreds of submissions by the editors of EH Publishing's four connected home magazines.

  • 2006 Electronic House Product of the Year Award: Electronic House magazine selected HouseLinc Desktop as one of its 2006 Electronic House Products of the Year for its highlighted innovative and outstanding features, combined with overall value. HouseLinc Desktop will be featured on ElectronicHouse.com for one full year for an expected reach of 1.5 million viewers.

    AEA Awards

  • AeA High Tech Award of 2006 for Innovative Technology of the Year: At the 13th Annual High Tech Innovation Awards ceremony the AeA Orange County Council named INSTEON the winner of the AeA High Tech Award for Innovative Technology of the Year.

    Click here to see all our awards.

    How Do I Learn More About INSTEON?

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