back to article Online outrage makes Logitech drop a brick: Now it will replace slain Harmony Link gizmos

Logitech is now offering to replace free of charge the connected home hubs it will automatically brick early next year. In a hasty U-turn, the electronics slinger said it will exchange Harmony Link control hubs with a similar product, the Harmony Hub. Both units allow punters to set up remote controls for various connected …

  1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "We understand that services are important to you,"

    Was this understanding gained recently?

    1. JohnFen Silver badge
      FAIL

      Let's all be understanding

      "Was this understanding gained recently?"

      My take on their blog post is that they always understood that, but also thought that the number of users they'd piss off was small enough that Logitech could screw them without much in the way of consequences.

      The understanding that I've gained from this is: never rely on Logitech and never buy hardware that requires the cloud in order to work. Although, honestly, I already understood that second thing.

    2. Chris King Silver badge

      "We also learned recently that bears DO shit in the woods, and that the Pope is rumoured to be Catholic. Not so sure on that second one though, brb"

      1. Scroticus Canis

        "bears DO shit in the woods"

        Most polar bears don't unless they are really lost. I can reassure you that the rumour about the Pope is real; no idea whether it is true or not.

  2. Notas Badoff

    Knee cappers

    "The Link was sold between 2011 and 2015, ..."

    "This offer comes after owners exploded with fury this week upon learning that the manufacturer will effectively kill off most of the functionality for the Harmony Link next March when its SSL/TLS encryption certificate expires."

    I must be confused. They built it and sold it with a known date they would stop supporting it? Or they built it without knowing how to would keep it updated and running? Or they built it without realizing technology would make their architecture insecure in the near future?

    The good news is your knee replacement surgery went wonderfully. Your new knee was all shiny and sparkly when it went in and it will run just fine.. The bad news is it will explode in 6 years.

  3. Nate Amsden Silver badge

    why can't they renew the cert?

    Last I checked certs had nothing to do with encryption just identification. And even worst case if it used http. It's a remote control device, hardly anything that needs top grade security.

    Suppose there must be more to the story but I haven't seen it in any of the articles I've come across

    (Never have used Logitech remotes myself i just deal with the multiple remotes from the devices themselves, I don't have a lot of devices so not a big deal)

  4. Robert Heffernan

    You spin me right round baby right round!

    Sounds like a bunch of spin to me. They fully intended on shit-canning the service to push people into buying the "next new thing". If they can update the firmware, they can update the SSL Certificates on the thing.

    The thing is, why does it's certificate need to expire anyway? Just build the server's certificate fingerprint into the device and ignore the expiration date. The connection is still encrypted, there is protection against MITM and no body need to expire anything.

    Regardless, the SSL was just a scapegoat for why it was being shuttered. Perhaps some legislation requiring a company to open up their device and protocols if they decide to shutter a service wouldn't go astray

  5. ThatOne Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Squeaky wheel won once again. Thanks heavens!

    Maybe (but I don't really believe it) this will make some companies rethink their fire & forget strategies.

  6. Timo

    why did it need the cloud

    Seriously I have the question of why it needed "the cloud" in the first place. Not owning any Logitech remotes I assumed that the cloud link was so that the user could go to the cloud and download profiles for new types of remotes to impersonate. In which case the cloud access would be pretty useful. Is that true?

    It would still suck to orphan them though.

    1. AndrueC Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: why did it need the cloud

      You don't need an internet connection to use Harmony Hubs (any longer - there was a firmware fix just over a year ago). However you do need an internet connection to programme the recent models. Also when mine loses its WiFi connection that pisses it off for a minute until it recovers.

      There are some advantages to having a profile online. If you get a new remote you can download the profile in a few seconds. Their support staff can also fix any issues you have (and to be fair respond pretty quickly). You could do the same thing by allowing you to save the profile as a file but that puts the onus on the customer to remember where they put the profile. At least with this method you just have to log on to your Logitech account and there it is.

      I've had such an account since getting my first remote in 2008 and despite only needing to log on a dozen times over the years it's always been there. I have my concerns about Logitech but so far they have never actually let me down.

  7. Boohoo4u

    Microsoft should by them, they’d be perfect together!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Really?

      Someone has to dig at MS in a completely unrelated article?

      Really?

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Someone has to dig at MS in a completely unrelated article?

        Well, to be fair. There were all those Windows RT devices and Windows Phones that got brought out with lots of pomp and promises and then dropped quicker than a celeb with a sex offence charge.

        Usually, firms seem just to get away with encouraging consumers to buy 'the future' only for the poor invester to find out a couple of months down the line it was an '8-track' they bought.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I'm more surprised they didn't mention Brexit...

  8. Baudwalk
    Meh

    I was lucky...

    ...to dodge that bullet.

    I thought about buying their Harmony stuff years ago, but remembered that there was a reason I hadn't bought a Logitech device in donkey's years: Hardware's OK, but they can't write software worth faeces. (SetPoint, anyone?)

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

      Re: I was lucky...

      I was under the impression most of their stuff was (arguably very well) curated third party offerings with their logo on it? Or do they manufacture their own kit too?

      I use to use their speakers, keyboards, and still have one of their mice. All worked well and lasted a long time for their price point. :)

    2. jimbo60

      Re: I was lucky...

      Same here...a fairly new laptop webcam I purchased was useless because of no drivers when the next version of Windows came out...no more Logitech for me.

      One thing I still don't get. Did they not make it possible to replace an expiring certificate in this device? Doh! I wonder what the write-down will be for that mistake.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Support from them for me

    has been generally good. Had an MX1000, was out of warranty (4 years old) but still contacted them, the mouse started to randomly jump to the top corner of the screen, but only when using USB (replaced computer and it didnt have a PS/2 port anymore), they sent me a new one. Bought a Harmony one, the battery swelled, again out of warranty, they sent me a new battery and a Harmony 900.

    They have just done the same thing with the Harmony 900, stopped support for it, so now I also have the Harmony Elite which they sent me as a replacement, a little over 5 years after they sent me the Harmony 900. All 3 remotes work, just that the 900 has been deactivated (unable to change its config).

    1. Zot

      Re: Support from them for me

      That's odd, I had the same problem with the 100, and its charge would only lasted a few hours. I had to buy a battery on the net somewhere, didn't cost much though.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Support from them for me

        If you had a battery with a blue label I think, it was defective, they should have replaced it. Mine was, it was also stuck in the remote. They sent me a replacement in case I could get it out.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

      https://eandt.theiet.org/content/articles/2017/11/view-from-washington-time-to-put-a-sell-by-date-on-consumer-electronics

      Hey, Netgear is **still** selling their NeoTV Prime that runs **GoogleTV**. That's right, the very same GTV that was abandoned *years* ago.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You don't OWN anything if you rely on their services

    When I buy a car, it's mine. I can get replacement parts from the vendor or second hand. I can get it fixed by the vendors garages or a third party garage.

    If you 'buy' a product that relies on their service being up and supported then you are not the owner of it, even if you pay subscription for the rights to keep using it you can and will get cut off.

    So many examples to cite you could make your own list here.

    Stop buying stuff that you can't own and control and repair.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019