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Official: Important ecobee service announcement

msaleemmsaleem TorontoEcobee Employee
edited September 2015 in ecobee

OFFICIAL UPDATE:

We are happy to inform you that we have resolved all outstanding issues impacting HomeIQ reports in the ecobee Web Portal. We have made infrastructure upgrades over the last few weeks and are continuing to make further investments to ensure these issues do not arise in the future.

You will be able to see thermostat temperature and occupancy, and all sensor temperature and occupancy, in real-time on your mobile app and web portal, and HomeIQ charts will be updated every hour.

It is our goal to maintain open and transparent communication with our community. Sometimes, due to the complexity of the issues that arise, it is not always possible to give definitive timelines for resolution. Rest assured we are always working to improve your ecobee experience.

We sincerely thank you for your patience and understanding while we addressed these issues.

--

ORIGINAL POSTING:

Good morning everyone,

Most of you are already aware of this, and if not, by now you should have received and read the email I sent out yesterday. I am posting the email here just in case some of you missed it. I'm really sorry it took so long for us to get this communication out, we wanted to finish our post-migration analysis and have a more complete picture of what happened before we sent a note to everyone, but that doesn't reduce the frustration and inconvenience you have experienced.

At the moment I don't have any more answers than what is provided below, but we welcome any and all discussion on this.

--

At ecobee, one of our goals is ensuring high uptime for our services. Last month, unfortunately we fell short in this regard, which resulted in unavailability of historical data and monthly HomeIQ reports. We know that being able to understand the performance of your heating and cooling system is important, and that not having access to these reports was frustrating. We want to update you on what happened and what we are doing to resolve the issue so it doesn’t happen again.

Our first priority was to maintain reliable performance of mission-critical functionality (such as remotely accessing and making changes to thermostats through the web and mobile apps). To do this, we de-prioritized historical data collection.

The vast majority of historical data are now available, however, our analysis shows instances where small intervals of data are still missing for some customers.

What to expect

You may see on average 45 minutes of data missing per day from June 10, with the July 21 - July 26 and August 11 - August 14 timeframes experiencing more data loss than other periods.

Additionally, you may experience inconsistencies in the coloured heat/cool icon shown in the ecobee3 mobile app and the Web Portal, and it may take longer than normal for current indoor temperature updates (from your ecobee3 thermostat and remote sensors) to be reflected in the web and mobile apps. While there may be up to a 15-minute lag for this information to be updated, all thermostat settings changes will be reflected in real time.

What this means

While you may see small gaps in web reports and historical data, or inconsistencies in equipment running status and current indoor temperature display in the web and mobile apps, please know that this will not negatively impact the operation or performance of your ecobee3 and HVAC equipment. Your ecobee3 will continue to reliably deliver comfort and help you save on your energy bill.

What we are doing

We are upgrading our infrastructure and optimizing our systems so that these issues do not recur. We expect to have everything back to normal in the coming days.

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Comments

  • The letter/email although states "we wanted to update you on what happened", yet there is no answer at all that tells us what happened.

    Further there is no comment regarding the gaps in the data. Are those gaps permanent (lost forever) or will the gaps be populated?

    Finally, there is also a statement in the email/letter about what you are doing so it does not happen again. Um... Where is that answer? How are you addressing that so that I, as an end user continues to stay with ecobee and not migrate to something else?

    lannister80
  • This communication is ridiculously belated. It provides no tangible explanation nor does it commit as to when our devises will work properly. As of now, if I want to modify my E3 settings and get immediate results, I have to change it at the physical stat. I also have no way of knowing what my equipment is doing through either the app or web portal. Whether or not these server issues are impacting the performance or calculations is not clear but it's fair to say that the system is not acting or responding normally. There are a number of other issues that are outside of the scope of this specific communication that are equally concerning.

    lannister80
  • OldRitchOldRitch Member
    edited August 2015

    FAIL!

    Mr. Saleen comes across as deluded, and seems to have no idea as to the actual scope of these issues..

    I've been seeing as many as 20 data gaps per day, typically 15-30 minutes each. And the June/July data i9s still completely missing for three weeks. And on the System Monitor/System page, moving the daily slider jumps a week at a time with no choices.
    Bottom line seems to be complete incompetence at both web development and customer relations in Ecobee.

    Ecobee is no longer on my recommend-to-friends list, due to miserable online software.

    FAIL!

    lannister80
  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember
    edited August 2015

    I am really, really irritated by the total lack of transparency on this by Ecobee.

    a) Is the data lost forever, or will it return?

    b) What are you doing to prevent this from happening again?

    c) I'm seeing missing data from TODAY (08/19). When will things return to normal?

    I'm a big, big advocate for Ecobee, but if this issue isn't resolved, and soon, that will probably change.

    EDIT: I just checked the last month's spreadsheet download (July 19th through August 18th) and 10.036% of the data rows are blank. That's 4,480 minutes of missing data for the last month.

  • jimmjimm HoustonMember

    I am happy to hear that the problem is officially acknowledged finally. Having said that, I think we are owed a more definite fix date than "in the coming days."

  • dx9dx9 CanadaMember

    The app and web portal is now showing the snowflake that system is on and my sensors are now updating to occupied etc. Hopefully that is the end and things get back to normal now

  • jimmjimm HoustonMember

    Looking much better now!

  • djcentinnodjcentinno FloridaMember

    As a person who works in the IT field at a major cancer hospital, I will attest to the fact that we do not provide our core customers (employees) with a lot of answers to questions that come up as to why something failed, how long it will take to fix it, etc. In all honesty, our employees don't really need to know the answers to those questions. We know it broke, we know what we have to do to fix it, and when we do fix it completely (note: completely)...then we will make the determination on how much to tell you about what happened, how it will be fixed, and how we will prevent it from happening again.

    Remember, the function of this thermostat is to heat/cool with remote sensors to lower your energy bill. Despite all of the current issues they are experiencing, I'm still saving money every month. So for me, I'm not complaining. Yes, it can be frustrating. Unexpected success can sometimes lead to unexpected challenges and unforeseen circumstances (we have that happen here where I work too).

    All I can say, is I'm glad this doesn't involve a possible recall where the thermostat heats up so much it can potentially burn down the house. Missing data...doesn't bother me one bit. My family is safe, my home is comfortable, my wallet is heavier.

  • The system seemed to be working for awhile this afternoon, however I've got gaps reoccurring now again. I can live with data collection issues but I'm not accepting anything less than accurate control and monitoring of my equipment.

  • @msaleem: You are not helping the situation by jetting in to drop a load of propaganda and then disappearing again. We now have unreliable system performance information for June, July and August 2015. In other words, the heart of the cooling season in the Northern Hemisphere. Many of us bought the Ecobee with the thought that "you can only manage things that you can measure". Now the measurements are unreliable.

    This 'gift' will keep on giving into next year as no one will be able to tell how much the missing data is affecting comparisons between 2015 and 2016.

    Not well done.

    Craig

  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember

    August 24th. Still have gaps in data. Yesterday and today.

  • EFTCEFTC AB, CanadaMember
    edited August 2015

    After reading some of the posts on this thread I have come to the conclusion that some of you are quite annoying. Ecobee makes an announcement to acknowledge that it is having some problems and as a result some data are lost. Keep in mind that this thermostat is not tested for 21 CFR part 11 compliance and it is not intended to use as a full fledge data logging device.

    I am under the impression that most of you expect military grade temperature and relative humidity data logging software from a $250 dollar thermostat. If you want data logging and data analysis, get a separate system to do that. Mind you, Ecobee is not a data storage server. They are storing the data out of good will. It is not like they are responsible for maintaining it.

    Remember, at the end of the day it is only a thermostat. Its job is to turn the HVAC system on or off when required. If you want to study the temperature of your house, use a data logger instead. It is probably more accurate.

    CAudety3knikmopac01rosenqui
  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember
    edited August 2015

    Ecobee makes an announcement to acknowledge that it is having some problems and as a result some data are lost.

    That's fine, except they said the event was over, yet we're still missing data every day. And waaaay more than 45 minutes that was claimed in the email.

    I am under the impression that most of you expect military grade temperature and relative humidity data logging software from a $250 dollar thermostat.

    Military grade? What does that even mean? I could set up a $30 RaspberryPi with more reliable data logging. This isn't rocket science. At all.

    If you want data logging and data analysis, get a separate system to do that.

    Why? Ecobee said their thermostat and system would do just that. It's a big part of the reason I chose Ecobee over Honeywell/Nest.

    Mind you, Ecobee is not a data storage server. They are storing the data out of good will.

    No, they're storing it because it was an advertised feature. Actually, I don't even want them to store it, just dump that data to a local file on flash and let me connect via a web interface to download it.

    And frankly, due to the gaps in data for the current day, it sound like they're not sotring it in the first place (they never had it).

    It is not like they are responsible for maintaining it.

    Are you kidding? It's an advertised feature.

    Remember, at the end of the day it is only a thermostat.

    No, it's a linux computer that acts as a thermostat.

    If you want to study the temperature of your house, use a data logger instead. It is probably more accurate.

    That's what the Ecobee3 IS. Again, advertised feature and part of the reason I bought it.

    dx9
  • dborndborn Montreal, CanadaMember

    EFTC said:
    After reading some of the posts on this thread I have come to the conclusion that some of you are quite annoying.

    Annoyed people tend to become annoying.

    I think most people here are reasonable and intelligent. Nobody is asking for or expecting military-grade data logging or 24/7, 100.0% performance from the device or infrastructure.

    What people want is to be informed of what is currently going on and when it will return to normal with reasonable details and accuracy. Setting up a "System Status" page on their websites (only accessible to customers if necessary?) would go a long way towards that.

    It's a nice email that was sent by ecobee and it may be perfectly suitable for a press release but to the people that witness every day that things are not improving and the data lost/missing is way more important than what is announced, how should they react?

    Be truthful and forthcoming about the situation and people will be much more forgiving.

    My 2 cents,
    Daniel

    lannister80
  • It has been a couple of weeks since the announcement acknowledging the issue and we have yet to hear any updates on the matter. It would be nice for someone from Ecobee to give a status update on the issue. Any sort of information would be welcome. Keeping silent will just make people more annoyed and question Ecobee's customer support.

    lannister80
  • dborndborn Montreal, CanadaMember

    I asked on the ecobee Developer Community board about a problem accessing data through the API (missing sensor data) and here is the response I just got from Hesham Fahmy. I don't think he will mind and I figured it would be of public interest here:

    We are working on our infrastructure capacity as we are currently experiencing
    periods where runtime and sensor data gets periodically dropped throughout the 
    day. Perhaps these dropped windows are corresponding to when you are not 
    getting data from the API?
    
    We are actively working on investing a lot more in our infrastructure. 
    Unfortunately this is not a very fast process as it involves many facets from our 
    own software changes, to middleware, to physical data center additions. It will be 
    a progressive set of changes over the next few months but the loss of runtime 
    data throughout the day should be resolved in the next two weeks. Thanks for 
    your patience. 
    
    ZD2342lannister80
  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember
    edited September 2015

    We are upgrading our infrastructure and optimizing our systems so that these issues do not recur. We expect to have everything back to normal in the coming days.

    That was 21 days ago. Any update? @msaleem?

  • Eyeballing my data, I currently seem to have more--and maybe longer--data gaps during the business day than back in July/August. Since it is now more than one week into September, any analysis using June, July, August or September 2015 data is tainted with missing data and thus largely useless.

    @msaleem, could you PLEASE give us more than platitudes and maybe explain the real causes--and timeline--for fixing this serious issue??

    Craig Treleaven

  • mortistmortist Prosper, TXMember

    I've had my Ecobee3 for several weeks now, everything works great except the reporting feature. I can definitely confirm that the data gaps in the recent days have been upwards of 2 hours, an update would be greatly appreciated.

  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember

    pvr4me said:
    Since it is now more than one week into September, any analysis using June, July, August or September 2015 data is tainted with missing data and thus largely useless.

    Yup. Now I update my insulation this winter I'll be unable to compare stats from next summer to this summer. not happy

  • mopac01mopac01 Kansas CityMember
    edited September 2015

    lannister80 said:

    pvr4me said:
    Since it is now more than one week into September, any analysis using June, July, August or September 2015 data is tainted with missing data and thus largely useless.

    Yup. Now I update my insulation this winter I'll be unable to compare stats from next summer to this summer. not happy

    Honestly, are you just trying to be the most negative being in the room? You'll still be able to compare your overall electric or gas bills to note a change from the insulation addition. You could extrapolate from other months. Or if you're as obsessive over this as you appear, then you'd surely have an indoor/outdoor weather station also recording temperature and humidity data and circuit monitoring at your panel to track your HVAC amperage usage. It's a $250 thermostat, not a $20,000 automobile or a $120,000 house or even a $9,000 HVAC system. And Ecobee has kept their word and corrected the problem. IT infrastructure modifications as extensive as this don't happen like changing a lightbulb. I'd hope this community is here to share ideas and suggest new strategies and solutions to problems. But it's of little value to simply read post after post where all one does is bi!ch without offering anything constructive. It's fixed. Please move on.

  • pvr4mepvr4me Member
    edited September 2015

    @mopac01 Who made you chief apologist for Ecobee? You are entitled to your own opinions but don't try to tell us which features we're allowed to consider valuable.

    Craig

    And BTW, this is the internet. If it weren't for complaints, it would be a hollow, empty place. ;)

    lannister80dbfrese
  • dborndborn Montreal, CanadaMember

    Has anybody else noticed that for several days now, there are no more gaps in the reported data on the portal? The sensor data via the API seems to appear after a couple of hours. I have a script that is counting on "near-realtime" data from sensors but hey, it's encouraging! :)

  • And Ecobee has kept their word and corrected the problem.

    And you know this how? Having a successful couple of days is very weak evidence that they have corrected the issue, given that it has been screwed up for almost three months.

  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember

    I have a script that is counting on "near-realtime" data from sensors but hey, it's encouraging!

    Don't you know you're not entitled to rely on such capability? @mopac1 says so.

  • Nope - not totally fixed yet - data gaps again yesterday.

  • OldRitch, Same here. On 9/18 I am missing from 12:15 PM to 12:55 PM. sigh

    It just frustrates me because I want to know what my usage is each day.. And since the day I have bought it a few months ago I have only been able to get a few days "accurate" with no data gaps.

    I am beginning to lose patience.

  • msaleemmsaleem TorontoEcobee Employee

    OldRitch said:
    Nope - not totally fixed yet - data gaps again yesterday.

    Please email [email protected] with your ecobee user ID and the period for which you are reporting data gaps. I will review with the team today and report back.

    corleythax said:
    OldRitch, Same here. On 9/18 I am missing from 12:15 PM to 12:55 PM. sigh

    Please follow the same instructions as above.

  • lannister80lannister80 ChicagoMember

    I also have some small gaps on 9/18. Emailed per instructions

  • msaleemmsaleem TorontoEcobee Employee

    lannister80 said:
    I also have some small gaps on 9/18. Emailed per instructions

    Thank you! Anyone who is seeing unexpected data gaps, please follow the instructions and get in touch ASAP.

    Please email [email protected] with your ecobee user ID and the period for which you are reporting data gaps. I will review with the team today and report back.

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