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HC3 trigger Alexa routine


Keithlambley
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I was looking for a solution to get my Fibaro HC3 to trigger an Alexa routine, it appears that only devices such as a contact or a motion sensor can be used as an Alexa routine trigger.

Then I watched a YouTube video by Brian from “Automate Your Life” where he makes a virtual device to interface between SmartThings and Alexa, in SmartThings it’s called a “Device handler” which I presume is similar to a Fibaro QuickApp. This consisted of a switch combined with a contact, when the switch is triggered the contact closes, this contact can be used to trigger an Alexa routine.

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As I don’t know much about virtual devices in Fibaro controllers I thought maybe I can do the same with a physical device, such a Smart Implant FGBS-222 which incorporates switches and contacts. Out of the box triggering an input causes the output switch to change state, what I needed was the other way around.

In the setup I disconnected the inputs from the outputs then hard wired the inputs to the outputs so when the output relay switch is turned on from within HC3 the input is pulled to ground.

It works ! the input contact is now visible in Alexa routines as a trigger, now I can use a scene to turn on the output relay switch and this in turn activates the input contact and the Alexa routine.

The possibilities created by this are endless only limited by your imagination, from getting Alexa to read out messages to controlling other devices which Alexa has access to but Fibaro does not.

BUT

Smart Implant devices are expensive currently £35 on Amazon here in the UK

SO

All you programmers out there, is it possible to make a QuickApp with the same functionality ?

Edited by Keithlambley
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  • Posted (edited)

    This solution only works if you have an Automation Bridge and use their skill, QuickApp Binary Switches dont show in Alexa with the Fibaro Skill, dont know why ! Fibaro seem intent on making things as difficult as possible.

     

    Here is a solution to get a Fibaro HC3 to trigger an Alexa routine, it appears that only devices such as a contact or a motion sensor can be used as an Alexa routine trigger.

     

    This can be done with a QuickApp representing a Contact Sensor, one QuickApp is needed for each trigger, (this is not strictly true as an Alexa Routine can be triggered by the contact  opening or closing therefore 2 successive routines could be triggered from one QuickApp).

     

    TO CREATE THE QuickApp.

     

    Go to "Settings" "Devices" and click the + button to add a device, select "Other Device" "QuickApp"

    Give it a name, I called mine "Magic QuickApp 1"

    In "Device type" select "Binary sensor"

    Click "Save"

     

    In the new device select the tab "Edit & Preview" and then click "Edit"

     

    In "Controls" drag a 2 button template up and drop it in "Device"

     

    Click on the left hand button and in the far right "Control" panel

    In "ID"                 It will say button2_1

    In "Label"           type ON

    In "onReleased" type  button_on

     

    Click on the right hand button and in the far right "Control" panel

    In "ID"                 It will say button2

    In "Label"           type OFF

    In "onReleased" type  button_off

     

    In the central "Main" box insert the following lines of code at the end of the existing comments and code.

    Please login or register to see this code.

    Click "Save" and "Close" this completes the QuickApp. The ON and OFF buttons change the state of the "Contact Sensor".

     

    SET UP ALEXA

     

    You then need to open the Alexa App and go the "Devices" tap the + button in the top right and then select "Add Device"

    Scroll all the way to the bottom of the list and select "Other" then tap "DISCOVER DEVICES"

    Alexa will look for new devices and should find the new QuickApp, follow the prompts to set up the device.

    (This assumes you have the Fibaro Alexa Skill or the AutomationBridge Alexa Skill enabled)

     

    You can now create routines with the QuickApp Contact Sensor as the trigger (listed under "Smart Home").

     

    CHANGING THE STATE OF THE QuickApp CONTACT SENSOR IN THE FIBARO HC3

     

    The QuickApp has 2 buttons to change the state of the "Contact Sensor" these buttons can be "pressed" using a scene.

     

    In a Block Scene Actions select a "Device" select the QuickApp and select "Press the button" "ON"

    Don't forget to reset the contact sensor after a time delay "Press the button" "OFF"

     

    Converting it to LUA

    Please login or register to see this code.

    THATS IT

     

    I have also attached some screenshots and the download of my "Magic QuickApp 1" which can be uploaded into your HC3

     

    Also as I called mine "Magic" a couple of magic wand icons for the QuickApp device ;-)

     

    Lastly - thanks to Tony at AutomationBridge for his help creating this QuickApp

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    A great hardware add on for Fibaro giving a lot of functionaliy that Fibaro themselves dont see intersted in doing.

     

     

     

     

     

     

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    Edited by Keithlambley
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    This script can trigger routines on alexa.

     

    In short, this script runs on a secundairy device (like a NAS(docker) or RPi, or anything that can

    run a small webserver. I use it for TTS from my HC3 to a alexa show. But it can also trigger routines.

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  • 2 hours ago, ppeterr said:

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    This script can trigger routines on alexa.

     

    In short, this script runs on a secundairy device (like a NAS(docker) or RPi, or anything that can

    run a small webserver. I use it for TTS from my HC3 to a alexa show. But it can also trigger routines.

    Thanks for your reply but you are way ahead of me with this answer, I do have a NAS drive but it cant run Docker and I dont have any other devices that can run a webserver even if I had the skills to implement this method.

     

    Can you answer the question, can a QuickApp do what I am proposing ? or am I asking for the impossible ?

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    1 hour ago, Keithlambley said:

    Thanks for your reply but you are way ahead of me with this answer, I do have a NAS drive but it cant run Docker and I dont have any other devices that can run a webserver even if I had the skills to implement this method.

     

    Can you answer the question, can a QuickApp do what I am proposing ? or am I asking for the impossible ?

     

    Normally a single quickapp can not trigger any routine or skill from Alexa. You will need something "in the middle" like

    this script or another skill to comunicate trough a API (web based(or local API).

     

    You found a pretty smart way around the above, it might be as simple to create a trigger in LUA

    that changes the output and starts the routine. But then for every routine you would need a seperate FGBS.

     

    So, i think this could work. You need some simple code to change the FGBS state.

     

    I cant help you with that.

     

     

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    Hi all!

    @Keithlambley it is a very useful guide but I have a problem: my Alexa App cannot find the QuickApp device.

    It finds other temperature and wall plug devices but not the QuickApp I've just created.

     

    Can you help me?

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  • 20 hours ago, COAT said:

    Hi all!

    @Keithlambley it is a very useful guide but I have a problem: my Alexa App cannot find the QuickApp device.

    It finds other temperature and wall plug devices but not the QuickApp I've just created.

     

    Can you help me?

    I am using an AutomationBridge and its skill to connect Alexa to Fibaro HC3 and this works ok, I am not at home at the moment so I cant try using the Fibaro skill, maybe it wont work with that skill, I didnt test it. Sorry if I have misled you with this.

     

    I did try using the Fibaro skill when I first got Alexa but didnt find it very good, using an AutomationBridge works well for me but its another piece of hardware to buy, the advantages I find are that the Alexa skill works well, I can select which devices and scenes appear in Alexa, I can give devices alias names, it does text to speech to Alexa. It also works with Google Assistant and IOS Homekit and they have a range of plugins which allow Fibaro HC to control devices which it otherwise cant do. Maybe all these things are possible using other methods which require much more knowledge than I have but the AutomationBridge makes it simple.

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  • On 5/16/2022 at 4:30 PM, COAT said:

    Hi all!

    @Keithlambley it is a very useful guide but I have a problem: my Alexa App cannot find the QuickApp device.

    It finds other temperature and wall plug devices but not the QuickApp I've just created.

     

    Can you help me?

    Just tested it with the Fibaro Skill and you are correct the QuickApp Binary Sensors dont show in Alexa.

     

    I am using an AutomationBridge and they do show with that skill, sorry I should have tested this more.

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