TP-Link does a back-flip on their local API, Rohan and Phil break down the 2021.3 release

The Cloud Strikes Again…Again!

  • TP-Link Have Back-Flipped on offering beta firmware which unlocks local TP-Link access Back in episode 76 we mentioned that TP-Link started rolling out firmware which was blocking local access to TP-Link Wifi smart switches. After the Home Assistant community reached out to TP-Link in frustration, they released a beta firmware which would re-enable local access to TP-Link smart switches, allowing Home Assistant to connect to them.  Troy Hunt on Twitter this week shared an email from TP-Link, which states that the beta firmware is no longer available from February 9th 2021. Meaning TP-Link smart switches which have upgraded their firmware can no longer be controlled by Home Assistant.  

Feedback from last episode

  • An interesting use case for NFC Tags/u/spr0k3t and /u/OHotDawnThisIsMyJawn were discussing how to use Home Assistant to track chores around the house in Home Assistant. The suggestion that came out was to use a Home Assistant datetime entity to track when a chore has been completed, or when something might expire, for example an air filter. Home Assistant can then know the date in the past that the chore was last actioned. A template can then be used to calculate the time since the chore was run, and if over x amount can fire off a notification etc to prompt people to do the chore. Home Assistant can then be set to update the datetime entity when an NFC tag is scanned, so that the chore notification resets. Great use case for NFC!.  


New Features

  • My Home Assistant New way for websites, documentation and forum posts to link directly to your own personal private Home Assistant instance on your network. Will be useful for buttons that can perform actions, like “Install Blueprint”, which can then install a blueprint to your local copy of Home Assistant securely. The URL to your local instance of Home Assistant is stored in your browser, and can’t be accessed by third-party websites. When you click a My Home Assistant link for the first time you’ll be prompted to enter the URL to your local instance.
  • Improved UI for the service calls For those who use the developer tools area of Home Assistant regularly, the services area has had a major makeover. It incorporates some of the interface elements from the new Blueprints area. 
  • Entity Copy Buttons in the states area Easily copy entity ID’s from the developer tools 
  • Suggested Areas Integrations can now suggest areas for devices. For example when adding a Sonos speaker, Sonos may suggest you assign a speaker to the Kitchen area. 
  • Apple TV gets shuffle, repeat and volume stepping support
  • Subaru and Mazda Connected Cars Subaru is available in the US and Canada for users with a Subraru Starlink subscription. 
  • Litter-Robot Integration The Litter-Robot integration allows you to control and monitor your Wi-Fi-enabled, automatic, self-cleaning litter box for cats. 
  • ClimaCell Integration A weather API with a free version. Could be a possible replacement candidate for Dark Sky. 
  • Templates can now be used to create weather entities If you have sensors that pull in data from various sources, you can now create your own weather entities from those sensors, allowing things like weather cards in Lovelace to be supported. 
  • AEMET OpenData Integration AEMET stands for “Agencia Estatal de Meteorología”, which is the Spanish Meteorological Agency. The AEMET weather platform uses AEMET OpenData as a source for current meteorological data for your location. The AEMET OpenData service is completely free but is limited to the Spanish territory. 
  • SmartTub Integration allows you to view and control hot tubs which use the SmartTub system, in Home Assistant. 
  • Rituals Perfume Genie The Rituals Perfume Genie integration allows you to control and monitor your Rituals perfume diffusers connected to your Rituals account. The integration is compatible with the first and second 2.0 versions.

Breaking Changes

  • Custom integrations now require a version key in their manifest file, this also means that all custom integrations now require a manifest file. For now, this will create a warning on startup. But this will eventually be blocked from loading if it’s missing a version in the manifest. 
  • The fan entity model has changed to split named speeds into percentages in the range from 0 (off)-100 and preset modes. Calls in automations and scripts to fan.set_speed should be replaced: 
  • MQTT cover value_template is deprecated to use for extracting position support will be removed in Home Assistant Core 2021.6. Instead of using value_template, position_template should be used. 
  • Automation triggers on startup If an automation trigger template already renders as true on Home Assistant Core startup, it will no longer trigger at startup. This bug fix prevents unintended triggers of automations as startup, but might cause a different behavior than before. 
  • Zwave JS now requires minimum 1.0.0


  • New colour “homeassistant” available for lights You can use the color_name in the light.turn_on service with a color name like blue, red, green etc. A new option now exists for “homeassistant” which will change your lights to the Home Assistant blue colour.

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Hosted By

Phil Hawthorne

Phil is a Melbourne based web developer who lives and breathes technology. When he's not at his day job, he’s in his home office attempting to simplify his life through complicated tech.

Website Smart Home Products Buy a Coffee

Rohan Karamandi

Rohan from Toronto, Canada works in the Technology sector as an architect designing network and datacenter solutions for his customers. His passion for technology stems from there and extends to IoT and home automation

Website Smart Home Products Buy a Coffee



Special episodes focused on various aspects of Home Assistant and Home Automation.