Direct interaction with thermostats using API

Software that I have written targets owners of the multi-tenant properties and allow them to centrally managed and monitored a number of devices, including thermostats. I want to include the Ecobee line of thermostats as one of the sets of devices.
At first glance, it appears that the API only works when it interacts with a hosted solution provided by Ecobee. What I am looking for is an API that allows me to communicate directly with the device over a private network. There is no value for my software to use a third party site to relay commands to a thermostat inside a private network.
Could someone shed some light on to my understanding and point me in the right direction.

Cheers,

Brook
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  • MarkK (API Architect) March 31, 2014 17:38
    Hi,

    The ecobee thermostats do not provide direct access to the thermostat. All communication is done through our servers. Such a feature is not on our roadmap.

    There is a previous and related discussion about it here:
    http://developer.ecobee.com/api/topic...
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  • Such a shame that this isn't even on the roadmap..... It needs to be a feature added as that is a huge market loss not being able to directly integrate.
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  • I complete agree. The Internet of Things is all about connecting to devices directly. Navigating through a propiertary hosted service likely will lead to a decline of interest in the ecobee devices. The market is not selling to property owners in the future. Property owners will buy systems that manage devices to control costs and bring convenience to their daily life. The devices bought will be those that work with the system and not the other way around.

    Network Thermostats and Honeywell have working API, so I suspect all players will jump once they understand the market's true direction.
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  • I'm needing to integrate directly between the Ecobee and Tridium Niagara AX panels without having to pass data back and forth to the outside world as most of these will be on their own LAN subnet with no routed access to a WAN. If it was possible, we were planning to have a first (small) order of around 300 Ecobee Smart thermostats and go from there probably on a monthly basis. Seems like this API release is more for home users wanting to link 2-3 thermostats that they already own, not for a light commercial/business EMS integration project that DDC controls and Bacnet/MSTP wiring is not in the budget.

    If Honeywell's API ends up allowing direct integration but Ecobee has ZERO plans to allow direct integration even on a roadmap, we will have no choice but take our business elsewhere. There is a huge market for direct integration. I prefer the Ecobee product over the Honeywell but right now it appears Honeywell will actually back their API for integrators. Especially considering Honeywell owns Tridium and there is a lot of Tridium Niagara in the wild used for nothing but integration with 3rd party devices.
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  • As far as I can tell the Honeywell API will be cloud based as well.

    Venstar has released a local API for their ColorTouch series which I'm testing right now. Very simple to interface with.
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  • This is what I get when attempting to connect to my Ecobee3 (and why direct access should be an option):


    The ecobee website is temporarily unavailable and our technical support team is correcting the problem.
    We expect to have the situation resolved in the near future and we apologize for any inconvenience that this may have caused.

    If you need to contact us please email info@ecobee.com or phone 1-877-9-ecobee

    Thank you,

    The ecobee team.


    This is not the first time I've seen this.
    I will not purchase again, nor recommend an Ecobee thermostat because of this.
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  • MarkK (API Architect) December 15, 2016 13:05
    Eric, you don't need to post this more than once. You are just spamming our forums. If you read the notice on the login page, you would have known that we were doing maintenance. You even posted a screenshot in the API Limitations thread with that exact login notice: http://developer.ecobee.com/api/topic...
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  • Yea but you guys are doing maintenance all the time. I find that the service goes down on average about once or twice a week for various reasons. This really sucks and why a local API is the way to go. My network never goes down.
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  • Ecobee, fix this! Stop taking money and holding devices for ransom or we'll take our money elsewhere (like to people who don't rob us blind)!

    EDIT: MarkK, if you're still the API architect, please take some responsibility here. You ought to know how outrageously vulnerable proprietary systems are, and when I say "rob us blind", I mean it: if you sell somebody a device but retain a choke-hold of control over it, you're cheating. If I sold you a kitchen knife that only worked if you used it the way I wanted you to, wouldn't you feel a bit cheated?
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