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Jon C

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  1. Firmware in the Sonoff modules can be changed to versions using a local server, which can be something as simple as a Raspberry Pi. An advantage of going this route is that your home control system isn't subject to network and remote server problems. Google Home does require internet access to do almost everything, so it won't work with a LAN-only solution.
  2. You can start with one lamp for $6. The app is free and nothing else is required (as long as you have WiFi).
  3. Check out the Sonoff series by iTead Studios. They offer a range of home control products starting at as little as 6 bucks. Six bucks gets you a WiFi-controlled relay module that you can splice in-line with a lamp cord (or an extension cord) and then control from anywhere in the world that has internet access using your smart phone. No hub is required, only a WiFi network. Most of their products are relay-controlled, so on/off only with no dimming; maybe lack of dimming is a good tradeoff if you can control your whole house for a hundred bucks. Some of the modules su