"Irrigation controller" is a pretty serious term to use for an automated sprinkler controller. The very word "irrigation" makes the Asante 99-00901-US Irrigation Controller sound like something you'd use on a farm for managing water control to acres of crops or to fill the troughs running to your herd of cattle rather than for watering the grass and flowers in your yard. Yet this is not the case. San Francisco Bay Area technology company Asante is pitching the 99-00901-US squarely at the home market, with new models priced in roughly the same range as the Blossom 12 Zone Smart Watering Controller and the Droplet Robotics Sprinkler.
Even Asante describes the 99-00901-US as an "[e]xtremely simple Irrigation Controller." Nonetheless, it has the basic features one would expect from a smart sprinkler system. If you're gradually inducting all your appliances into the Internet of Things, be assured that the 99-00901-US comes with something that's rapidly becoming the minimum requirement for modern home automation: a smartphone app. You can set the watering schedule for up to six zones, which definitely isn't enough for a farm. (It may not be enough for some suburban yards.) The included home extender can stretch the wireless coverage over a 5,000 sq. ft. plot of land.
The app gives the user a weather report that can be used as a basis for setting the irrigation amounts, though you'll have to program those settings manually. A rain sensor is available, but costs extra.
Asante has been around since 1988, but they haven't been making irrigation controllers all that time. They started out manufacturing Ethernet cables, which gave them a head start on Internet technology back when the Internet wasn't cool yet. Online reviews for the 99-00901-US are sparse, but generally good.
Overall a high quality easy to install and operate control unit. It also makes repairing or testing sprinkler heads so easy.
Easy to set up and use, however It will not allow separate zones to run on separate days . All zones must run on the same day.
The 1st unit that was shipped had a problem with turning on and off by itself with out a program. the manufacturer ended up replacing the unit and it has worked perfect since.
I was looking for a simple to operate irrigation controller that could be controlled from an iPhone over the internet and this fills the bill perfectly.