Teardown: Smart switch provides Bluetooth power control

-October 06, 2017

I've tested (and tore down) several network-controllable power switches of late; Belkin's WeMo and, more recently, TP-Link's HS100, both Wi-Fi based. Then there's GE's (sold under license by Jasco) Avi-on line. Unlike the others I just mentioned, it's Bluetooth-based, and with a twist.

Each Avi-on unit is not only a receiver but also a mesh transceiver, theoretically enabling you to control any unit in your house from your Android- or iOS-based device, no matter where you are ... assuming the units are able to "see" each other, that is. The BT4101 smart switch that's the subject of today's teardown (I also have two other Avi-on products in my teardown queue) is also quite flexible in its configuration options ... you can give it 7-day scheduling, set it to turn on at dusk and off at dawn (with automatic seasonal adjustments), give it custom countdowns, and set it to randomly turn on and off while you're away to create a lived-in look.

I'll begin, as usual, with a set of box shots:


Inside, you'll find a product pamphlet and owner's manual:



Here are some views of the BT4101 out of the box:


And a closeup of the backside markings:


Those rubber "knobs" are telltale signs of screws underneath; they were actually press-fit, not glued in place:


Voila; I was right!


I hadn't encountered the "spanner" dual-notch screw heads before:


But my iFixit 64-bit driver kit was as-usual up to the challenge (that's a #4):


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