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Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

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universe
 
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Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by universe » Sat May 27, 2017 2:45 am

Hi team,

Look, love this application, and I am really appreciating the overhauled internals that have seen CPU usage plummet. However, lack of updates to 'small' things has been grinding my gears for a while. Not enough to bring me to posting publicly, until this past weekend when there was an incident.

Last weekend, our back yard, protected by Sighthound Video, was broken into and several high value items were taken. Reviewing several cameras, we were able to see that the person had been carefully watching for us and our neighbours to both leave before scaling the fence and breaking in.

We have Sighthound set up like most people to send us a mobile notification (via the iOS app) if movement is detected from certain cameras. I also have the system email me using Gmail. When a person is detected, we receive an email via Gmail because it is currently the only way to preview images captured from the alert. Often, within two to three seconds of receiving a push notification from Sighthound we'll have an email notification displayed from Gmail. Our system is set up (for security reasons) to NOT allow external access to the cameras or servers outside of our network. We have a VPN set up, so remotely checking in from work is not an issue.

What we've found through regular use of Sighthound notifications and gmail is that the quickest way to 'see' if the notification is a false positive or needs action taken is to open the email from Gmail, view the attachment, and then take appropriate action.

Fortunately, until this weekend we've never had to take action before but we don't take notifications lightly.

As most users on iOS know painfully well, the SH iOS app is very slow to load anything including clips. Even over high speed connections (like our 900mbps/700mbps fiber connection).

Long story short, my partner and I were 30 minutes away from home, at a dinner event when a person decided to break in. I felt the vibration from a notification come through in my pocket, but as I was engaged in conversation with some other managers it was rude to pull out my phone and check. The second notification in succession (a minute later) tipped me off that something needed attention.

I saw that there were two sighthound notifications and two gmail notifications. I opened the gmail notification, waited for gmail to open, and load. This took about 20 seconds. Then I waited for the images to load, that took another 10-15 seconds. In total, about 3 or 4 minutes had elapsed since the first notification came through.

As soon as I saw the image of this person in our backyard, I immediately tried to call my neighbour. He didn't answer. So I called the other neighbour. 4-5 minutes had passed by this point. The other neighbour was home, so he checked over the fence and saw no one was there and that the gate was left open. My partner and I left the event, returned home, and called the police. While we waited for the police to arrive, we reviewed the footage.

The person only needed 5 minutes to do what they needed, and they had got what they came for. There wasn't much we could do, as they didn't break into our house, which would have set off our house alarm. I would have also got a different notification when that happens, anyway. But the reality is, to identify that this was a real threat took 1-2 minutes, instead of a simple glance of my phone.

So, there are a couple of functional requests I'd like to make that can help prevent further situations like this for your other customers. Including your higher value enterprise customers.

Rather than requesting you overhaul the mobile / web app, which I'm sure you plan to at some stage in the future and would be a massive body of work.. I would like to request you invest a week or two into improving SHV iOS/Android app notifications and your integration with IFTTT.

Both iOS and Android support rich notifications. These are notifications which include image attachments that are displayed right on the home screen. Rich notifications mean that I would see an image of the alert as soon as it happens. No need to use gmail (at all). No need to spend precious minutes waiting for your app to open over a VPN connection or internet connection to see the image/clip.

The key to Sighthound being useful is providing users with actionable intelligence as quickly as possible.

The second request is for you to improve your integration with IFTTT. Bidirectional communication would help improve the way that intelligence from Sighthound is used by other applications (including rich notifications) and more importantly, allowing other applications to control how Sighthound rules and cameras are used. Eg. IFTTT When I arm my home alarm, arm all of my sighthound cameras.

I know you get a lot of requests here, and I know SHV is not your #1 priority, but I hope you are able to take a few weeks of development time to prioritise the enhancement of the second most important output from Sighthound - which is actionable intelligence. Hopefully this will prevent other customers from similar losses.

Thanks.

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Stephen Neish, CEO
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by Stephen Neish, CEO » Tue May 30, 2017 11:00 am

Hi universe,

Thanks for the kind words about the latest version of the app, and I'm very sorry to hear that you were robbed.

You're right that there is room to improve notifications. As has been mentioned in other threads, there is work in progress to make the speed to access clips in the iOS and Android apps faster. There is also improvement coming to the web remote viewer. Rich notifications would also clearly improve the ability to sort threat from non-threat at a glance, and we will look at adding them.

The suggestion for IFTTT is one we hear every now and again, but there are a couple of factors to consider. Firstly, many customers have a problem in allowing two way access for IFTTT - they are OK with the current outbound notifications from their computer/network to the IFTTT network, but will not allow IFTTT to access their computer for inbound triggers for security reasons. The level of concern is such that we haven't pursued two-way IFTTT traffic.

The second factor for IFTTT is we don't have control over delays on the IFTTT network. Some users have complained of delays of many minutes.

It is true that we put a lot of time into version 4.0, but with the heavy lifting done, you will see more features coming to light soon.

To sum up, I think your suggestions on improvements to notifications are on the mark, and I hope you will be happy with the improvements soon to come.

Thank you again for your comments.

Stephen Neish
CEO

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universe
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by universe » Sun Sep 02, 2018 3:47 pm

Just bumping this as it is now September in 2018 and I'm looking to migrate away from Sighthound due to lack of Rich Push Notifications.

Any insights on whether this is a feature that can be expected some time soon Stephen?

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Steve
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by Steve » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:33 am

Hi universe

I currently have my push alerts being received with the alert image attached. its as fast as the sighthound push alerts, as its sent as an email by sighthound and the great thing is it stores all them in the app and you can see the picture alert timeline. I did this by using Pushover https://pushover.net/

it allows you to create a custom email address as a push alert. I add the pushover email address as a 2nd address to my gmail sighthound email address and on the front screen on my iphone when an alert is triggered I see the picture without having to open my phone. In yuor case you would have seen several push alerts with the pictures without having to open your phone and just scroll.

I can also add custom sounds for the push alerts so front drive is a siren sounds and opening my back gate is a different sounds, very cool. currently all sighthound push alerts are the same sound so I could not tell which of my 10 cameras/rules had triggered. now I can. I hope they build this in.

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universe
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by universe » Sat Sep 08, 2018 7:43 pm

Hi Steve,

Thanks for mentioning. I recently installed Pushover into Home Assistant for exactly this purpose based on Motion Detection within the House. But, now that you've mentioned it - I should forward emails to Pushover for these notifications as well.

Out of curiosity have you tested the latency between an event and the Pushover notification? Is it within 10-20 seconds? The Push notifications within Sighthound are reasonably fast - 2-5 seconds. Just a shame they're useless outside of the network.

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Steve
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by Steve » Mon Sep 10, 2018 2:19 am

Hi Universe

the delay from the push alert from sighthound to the email push alert from Pushover is about 2 seconds slower. so very good. Its also a great backup as we lost sighthound push alerts last month for 4 day.

In some cases I have seen pushover beat sighthound. so If Sighthound were to build this in to the product it would be a great step forward. but the big advantage is when I open pushover say on my ipad at night,My main use is on iphone, its shows me a full history of the days events in order almost in a movie listing. with the current sighhound setup you would have to open every email one at a time as the iphone app can takes ages to load the clips. so this way instant access to all alerts with pictures.

hope this helps

Steve

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ericcirone
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by ericcirone » Wed Nov 28, 2018 1:37 am

Just wanted to echo that I too use pushover to get rich notifications when an event happens. I have Sighthound email the pushover email address the picture and it comes through with a rich notification. Not ideal, but definitely works.

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flynreelow
 
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Re: Rich Notifications via the App or IFTTT

by flynreelow » Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:51 pm

Has anyone noticed audio issues after setting up Pushover or other email triggers?


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