On the heels of its latest smart door lock release, Wyze is launching a garage door controller to manage this other way access to your home. The Wyze Garage Door Controller launched today and costs $39.99 plus shipping. This clever tool allows you to control and view your garage door from anywhere with Wyze Cam v3 and Control Box, so you can see the door as it is opened or closed remotely using the Wyze app. Instead of using the contact sensor to monitor the status of your door as similar products do, Wyze deploys some AI technology into its built-in camera to monitor your door.
A smart garage door controller is an upgraded device that connects to your existing mechanical door switch to allow you to control it remotely via a Wi-Fi connection — like when you’re out of range of your usual clicker or visor button. It’s a lot like a smart door lock but for your garage door, and it can help with the old panic issue when you don’t remember whether you left the garage door open (and drive all the way home to check). There are also some garage door openers with this technology built in, so no additional console is needed.
Wyze says its hardware is compatible with most opener brands, and there’s an online checker you can use to see if your machine is one of them. But the Wyze console is unlikely to work originally with the most popular garage door openers, such as Liftmaster or Chamberlain, which use a proprietary control system. Companies like Meross and Tailwind have devised an alternative solution to Cludgy where you have to connect the console to a remote control to get around the technology proprietary Chamberlain. Wyze did not say if it has a similar solution or if it will work with those brands. We have reached out for clarification.
Unlike most other smart garage door controllers, the Wyze does not use a contact or tilt sensor to determine if the garage door is open or closed. Instead, it relies on the camera’s AI to know the status of your door.
Well kinda. It doesn’t seem to use machine learning on the device to determine if your garage door is open – instead, the Wyze Cam Garage Door Controller has its own camera that monitors a QR code. Yes, you have to stick a giant QR code inside your garage door for this to work.
While it’s a bit of an odd solution, it’s definitely an innovative one that addresses a common problem with many of the existing options. Even the most reliable sensors can give a false reading for one reason or another. The last thing you want to happen when you’re miles from home is opening the garage door instead of closing it. (This is something I tried when testing a garage door controller, which is why I always recommend getting a camera for some visual checking.) It remains to be seen if a large QR code sticker will be better.
The device consists of two parts: the Wyze Cam v3 and the Garage Door Controller unit, which is a small white box that connects to the Wyze Cam using a Micro USB cable. This box is then wired into the door opener to tell it when to open or close. (It only installs next to existing wires, so there is no need for soldering.) It does not remove functionality from your existing wall button or remote clickers.
You installed the camera upside down on your garage ceiling via a door opener. It attaches to a magnetic mount and should be near the console, which you plug into the opening. Wyze provides double-sided tape and magnetic mounts, so there’s no need for any screws or drilling, just a nearby power outlet on the ceiling.
When the door is opened or closed, the camera records a video that you can watch in the Wyze app. There is limited (12-second) or unlimited free storage if you subscribe to Wyze’s Cam Plus (from $1.25 per month). The camera has 1080p color night vision, and with Cam Plus, you can also get people, package, and vehicle detection. There is also the option to use a removable microSD card for 24/7 recording.
It recently emerged that Wyze had failed to tell its customers about a long-standing security issue with the first generation of the Wyze camera. This lack of transparency amplifies any concerns people may have about the use of connected cameras in and around their homes, especially the devices that allow access to them.
The Wyze app has a number of notification options, including whether your door is open or when it is opened or closed. The open/close history shows you when it’s up and running, and you can open or close the garage with a button in the app. You can also use the Wyze rules engine to set the door to automatically close at a certain time of the day or use geolocation to automatically close when you leave the house.
The Wyze Garage Door Controller can only control one door, so you’ll need one per door if you have multiple garage doors. You’ll work with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control and integration of smart home actions.
Wyze sells the garage door console in a bundle with the Wyze Cam v3, but you can also purchase a Wyze garage door console replacement kit, which does not include the Wyze Cam v3, for $18.99 plus shipping. The console only works with Wyze Cam v3 – not any of the company’s previous models.