There are dozens of smart hubs on the market that promise to have the best integrations and speed. Unfortunately, the majority of those hubs are worthless products that are nonfunctional and unreliable.
On the bright side, Wink is a notable and highly-trusted brand that manufactures one of the best smart hubs on the market. Two of their popular and best-selling creations are Wink Hub and Wink Hub 2.
Those two are 1st and 2nd generation products that are quite popular in the smart hub industry. Wink hubs have pretty good integrations, are fast and flawlessly sync with other third-party devices.
Table of Contets
- 1 Wink Hub vs Wink Hub 2: Pros & Cons and Verdict
Wink Hub vs Wink Hub 2: Pros & Cons and Verdict
In this Wink 2nd Generation vs Wink 1st Generation Hub article, we’ll discuss, evaluate, compare and rate the most important aspects of both smart hubs. We’ll also present detailed charts and lastly, we’ll come up with a reasonable verdict and crown either of these two as the leading product.
1. Installation Process
Since both of these smart hubs are from the same manufacturer, we can discuss the whole installation process in a single topic. These two have identical setup processes and there’s no way of messing up.
In order to find out how to activate these hubs, I’ll drop a wonderful visual guide that perfectly explains how to setup and activate your Wink hub.
So there are six main steps required to complete the setup of Wink 1st and 2nd generation hubs. If you still have questions about how it’s done, make sure to check the user’s manual for further guidance.
Alternatively, reach out to the support team of Wink. Those guys are superb and will help with any issue you might be facing.
One of the perks of the second-generation Wink hub is that it now supports auto-discovery. In other words, whenever you plug in the Wink 2 hub, you just need to download the Wink mobile application and it’ll automatically discover your smart hub.
Today, every smart home shopper looks for products that improve the visual aspect of the indoor and outdoor surroundings. If these two smart hubs fail to meet the minimum visual requirements of a buyer, they might start looking for a different hub.
Luckily, Wink always does its best to design the very best smart hubs. Like other products on the market, Wink 1 and 2 are available in the traditional white color. While it’s not something that might freak out your guests, it definitely improves the overall attractiveness of its surroundings. Giving it a smarter, stylish and a modern look.
Above, you can see the picture of a Wink Hub 2 placed in our living room that perfectly blends with the indoor interior. Besides the visual appearance, it’s important to know the dimensions of a smart hub to be sure that it’ll easily fit in the pre-planned area.
The dimensions of the Wink Hub 2 are 7.25″ x 7.25″ x 1.25″ and it weighs around 0.5lb. As for the first generation Wink, it’s dimensions are 8″ x 8″ x 3″. Frankly, these two are well-sized and I’m pretty sure you’ll have zero trouble finding them a place at your house.
Both Wink models are made of the same materials and you’ll only feel a slight difference in terms of quality. The biggest change in visuality is that the second-generation Wink is now slimmer.
3. Supported Devices
Since the main reason why people purchase these hubs are due to their integrations, we need to know if Wink has made some improvements and if the second generation Wink integrates with more smart home devices.
While 1st generation and 2nd generation Wink smart hubs integrate with the same devices (Bluetooth Low Energy (LE), Kidde, Lutron Clear Connect, Wi-Fi, Z-Wave, and ZigBee), the second-generation Wink hub also has a Bluetooth LE radio and a Thread-capable radio for future support.
So if you plan to actively join the smart home game, you’re better off purchasing the second-generation Wink since it’ll better integrate with the newly-released smart devices.
In order to give you the right idea what to expect from the newly-released smart hub, I’ll say that Wink 2 builds on the foundation of the original hub and now, it’s faster, has enhanced capabilities, Wink 2 better integrates with other smart devices and the connectivity is much better.
But that’s not the main aspect that makes the Wink Hub 2 a better choice. From our personal experience, the main reason why you should consider paying a bit more and get the (or if you already own the 1st generation Wink) newly-released Wink 2 is its speed.
From what we’ve tested, the second-generation Wink can play the same scene in 3 seconds while the original Wink took around 15 seconds to do so. You might think that those 12 seconds aren’t much and it’s not worth paying twice the amount to get the Wink 2 hub.
Consider a case like this:
For example, if you have 5 lights Using Z-wave switches and you have it set as a single scene. With the 1st generation Wink, they will light up in a random order and it’ll take around 10-15 seconds to affect all five.
While the second-generation can flawlessly complete the job under 3 seconds, let’s put this factor aside for a moment.
The main reason why people purchase these hubs is to integrate all their smart devices and make everything more simple. If a hub requires 15 seconds to play a simple scene like that, it ruins the whole smoothness and ‘wow’ factor.
If you walk by a sensor and it detects you’re there, you expect it to light up immediately but in those 15 seconds, you might be out of the room and lighting up everything becomes pointless.
So it’s really important to purchase the right smart hub to avoid similar cases from happening. It’s annoying when things are that slow and most importantly, the whole ‘smart hub’ game becomes useless.
Lastly, the Ethernet cable makes the Wink 2 hub much more secure. Of course, you can still connect it to your Wi-Fi network but the Ethernet enables a smoother, more reliable network connection.
4. Mobile Application
The next topic we need to write about is the mobile application of Wink. Since it’s where we’ll be controlling all our smart devices, we need to be sure that the Wink’s app is reliable, functional and intuitive.
1st generation and 2nd generation Wink hubs use the same mobile application and we can say for sure that it’s one of the bests we’ve ever tested. Wink’s mobile application is easy to use, intuitive and well-built.
If you don’t know how the app looks on the inside, I’ll drop a few pictures that perfectly illustrates what to expect from the mobile application.
Besides its flexibility, navigating the Wink’s app is pretty easy. There’s no chance of getting lost and I’m pretty sure that you’ll understand the whole interface in a few minutes. We’ve personally tested the app and talked about it with other Wink owners. Everyone seems happy about it but some noted a few drawbacks that are quite interesting.
The large sized icons make the mobile application more user-friendly. Unlike other competitors, for example, SmartThings, Wink has given a lot of thought how the app should feel and look.
As for the rest, we’ve paired Wink with Nest Cam Outdoor & Ecobee4 and as expected, the displayed live feed was crystal clear, the temperature reports were accurate and IFTTT recipes worked fine too.
In addition, we made our Wink 2 follow the Amazon Alexa voice-enabled commands. While we didn’t expect the sync to be good, the results were amazing. The sync was so good that we barely noticed a delay.
5. Advantages and Disadvantages
We’ve talked a lot about the installation, integrations, mobile app and design. What we need to do now is finding out the pros and cons of Wink 1 and Wink 2. It’s essential to know all the advantages and disadvantages to avoid any misunderstandings after purchasing either of these two.
In order to find out the pros and cons of first and second generation Wink hubs, we’ve created two detailed charts that show all the advantages and disadvantages of both smart hubs.
First-Generation Wink Hub
|Easy Setup Process||No USB Ports|
|Free to Use||No Battery Backup|
|Flexible Mobile Application||Basic Design|
|Plenty of Connections||64MB Memory|
|Strong Bluetooth Connectivity||Not Ethernet|
|Alexa & IFTTT Support||Manual Discovery|
Second-Generation Wink Hub
|Enhanced Local Control||No USB Ports|
|Enhanced Connectivity||No Battery Backup|
|Flexible Mobile Application|
|Plenty of Connections|
|Alexa & IFTTT Support|
So the difference between these two hubs is immense. The charts above clearly show the superiority of the Wink 2 hub. It outranks its predecessor in every major aspect and offers better speed, enhanced integrations, better features and higher security levels.
The support team of Wink is quite good. I’ve personally reached out a few times and always received professional answers and tips. It would’ve been great if they had a Developer community like SmartThings for users to share their personal experiences and tips, but it’s nothing really special.
Wink’s customer care is caring and attentive. I’m pretty sure they’ll help you solve any issues you might be facing. They’ve helped with a few things and I’m more than satisfied.
Before concluding our comparison article, we’d like to present a detailed chart that shows the full features of both smart hubs. The chart below ideally shows the difference between the first and second generation Wink hubs.
Wink hubs are popular devices on the market and have thousands of positive reviews. They are regarded as highly-trusted smart hubs and have thousands of active users. Wink always tries to improve their products and always succeeds in doing so.
While Wink 1 and 2 are great hubs, if you want to own the best one, you should definitely go for the second-generation model. It’s enhanced, flexible and comfortable.
The Bottom Line
Wink 2 has much improved compared to the predecessor hub. Now it has a sleeker design, more capabilities, features and higher durability. Today, Wink 2 is widely regarded as the complete smart hub on the market that offers the best features, security and flexibility.
The mobile application of Wink is advanced and easily outranks any other competitors’ mobile app. The large sized icons, smoothness and intuitive design make the Wink app standout.
While Wink 1 and 2 are quite similar in terms of features, the second-generation hub is free of all the bugs that were present in the original model.
If you already own the original Wink, I’d recommend upgrading to the second-generation hub. It’s way better than its predecessor and the latter is a lot faster. Surely, the decision is up to you but if you want to better control your house and make everything more simple, the Wink 2 hub will deliver good results and most probably, it’ll exceed your expectations.
If you don’t own any of the above mentioned smart hubs, don’t spare money and do not purchase the first-generation model. Wink 2 completely transforms how you interact with your smart home and devices.
|Security Camera Name||First-Generation Wink||Second-Generation Wink|