Home Assistant Yellow

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Apr 08, 2022

Project update 8 of 14

Zigbee Support, PoE Design Tweaks, and Updated Delivery Schedule

by Stefan A

Time flies like crazy. It’s been a productive two months since the last update! Let’s dive right in.

Work Towards Zigbee and Matter Coexistence

The Silicon Labs RF module used on Yellow supports the Zigbee smart home standard, as well as the Thread communication protocol, which is used by the upcoming Matter smart home standard. Recently, Silicon Labs published software that allows using both Zigbee and Matter at the same time using Yellow!

The video shows that we are able to add and communicate with an OpenThread based device. We were able to use Zigbee at the same time.

There is still lots of work ahead to support Thread and Matter in Yellow and Home Assistant. The Matter smart home standard has been postponed to fall 2022. This means that Yellow will be shipped with Zigbee firmware preinstalled for the time being. We are confident that supporting Matter will only be… a matter of time.

Power-over-Ethernet Design Tweaks

Last time, we reported that we had to change to a new chip to support PoE. Thanks, component shortage. In February, we pre-tested that new design at a local EMC laboratory in Switzerland and found it violated the emission standards.

Fortunately, we were able to pinpoint the culprit: emissions were mainly driven by the PoE DC-DC converter. We found ways to significantly reduce the emissions which require a new PCB revision. We’ve been able to adjust it with minimal delays. The updated PCBs have been produced, and are currently being tested for full regulatory approvals. This should be completed in April.

Supply Chain Updates

We have received all MGM210P wireless modules necessary. This means that all critical components for the Yellow PCBs have been sourced at this point, so we will be able to produce Yellow PCBs in volume.

The only thing we don’t have yet are the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 modules for the Home Assistant Yellow. In an initial estimate, we got February communicated as a delivery date. Unfortunately, despite our early volume orders in August and November last year, we haven’t received any Compute Module 4 to this date. We are promised to receive the first batch of 270 modules at the end of April.

Getting Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 even in single quantities has gotten increasingly hard. Practically every online store carrying Raspberry Pi products is sold out. The Raspberry Pi team recently wrote a blog post about the production and supply-chain challenges they are facing. If you have ordered a Home Assistant Yellow Kit, and you haven’t ordered a Compute Module 4, we have a helpful tip for you: André Costa created a website at rpilocator.com which tracks supplies in various stores. You can also follow @rpilocator on Twitter and you will get a Stock Alert as soon as a Compute Module 4 hits the shelf.

Along with the Compute Modules being hard to source, they have also increased by US$5 per module. This means our base model with the compute module will get more expensive to create. For now, we are absorbing this cost so early backers get their Home Assistant Yellows without any price changes.

Expected Delivery Dates for First Batches

At this point, you might have guessed that we have to announce a small delay. The effective shipment delay depends on the variant you have ordered.

ProductOriginal Est. Delivery DateNew Est. Delivery Date
Yellow Kit with Power SupplyMay 31, 2022June 30, 2022
Home Assistant YellowJune 30, 2022June 30, 2022
Yellow Kit with Power-over-EthernetJuly 31, 2022July 31, 2022

The dates above pertain to delivery of the first batch of each product, and subsequent batches have later delivery dates. You can find the updated estimated delivery date for you in your Crowd Supply Account under “View your Order History” and then click on “View Order Details” of your order.

Now, one of the major variables is the result of the regulatory approval. We are waiting eagerly for the result (fingers crossed!), and we will keep you informed in the next update!

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