smartthings review

Samsung SmartThings Review – 2nd Generation

Joseph Reviews, Smart Hub 0 Comments

One hub for all your Smart home devices

  • Connector.

    The Good Stuff

  • Supports many protocols. Easy to develop new handlers
  • Sleek design of the hub and sensors
  • Easy to install. Regular software updates available
  • Battery backup included

  • Connector.

    The Not So Good Stuff

  • The device pairing process can be fussy
  • The Smart Things app is disorganized and confusing
  • Occasional performance glitches and connectivity issues outside the US
  • No approach for migrating from old Smart Things hub
  • No Web based UI for SmartThings devices
  • It requires a router to function, which makes sure is battery backed up

Price: $$

Features
8.0
Usability
7.0
Design
8.0
Performance
8.0

Review

With multiple smart home devices in the market-dominating Internet of Things (IOT), the SmartThings Hub is a leader when it comes to connecting smart home devices. With smart home automation devices coming with set apps, the SmartThings hub acts as a command center for all of the connections to smart thermostats, door sensors, smart plugs and security cameras.

With a SmartThings Hub you can connect with hundreds of compatible smart sensors, lights, locks, cameras and more to:

  • Monitor your home from anywhere
  • Control and manage your smart home devices remotely
  • Secure your home and configure alerting based on customized triggers

As a mainstream smart home management device, the SmartThings hub does a sensible job of balancing basic functionality and device control with the potential for powerful, complex home automation.

Specifications of Samsung’s SmartThings Hub:

ParametersDescription
PowerRated Voltage – [email protected] max
Battery
  • Type - 4x Alkaline AA
  • Battery Life - Up to 10 hours
OS Compatibility
  • Smartphone / SmartThings - Hub
  • iOS 7.0, Android 4.0, Windows Phone 8.1 or greater
Operating EnvironmentOperating Temperature - 0 to 40 °C
Shipping / StorageTemperature: -20 to 50 °C, Humidity Range: 0 to 90 % RH. (non-condensing)
Certification Certification: FCC, ZigBee, 2.4 GHZ
Wireless RFProtocol: Z-Wave+, TX Strength: +20 dBm, RF Channels: 14, Range: 130+ ft. (40+ m) LOS
Physical SpecificationDimension (HxWxD) - 123 x 107 x 37 mm


Features

  1. Integration with other smart devices: The Samsung SmartThings Hub is the heart of your smart home. With SmartThings Hub, you can link all of your smart home automated devices and manage them all using the Smart Things app (Android, Apple,). Unlike other smart devices, Smart Things Hub is not limited to restricted brands but is compatible with multiple brands including Bose, GE switches, Philips products, Honeywell Thermostat, Schlage Z-Wave Door Lock and other brand products.
    The hub also has a new built-in Bluetooth radio that is currently not active but will be in a future update. You can also monitor cameras, check or verify sensors and receive alerts in a common dashboard. It can also be integrated with Alexa and once everything is set up on the Hub and named, just pair with Alexa (Amazon Echo) and command. Pairing the with Echo gives you a more robust offering when it comes to commands, but all of the Alexa commands follow the same basic setup. “Alexa, [do this thing].
  2. SmartApps: SmartApps are third party services which can integrate with the existing SmartThings setup, you can set defined actions, like ‘turn on smart power outlet when a door sensor ‘ Within your default location of the smart device, you can edit the logic you have already built or added, but it doesn’t let you create new programs.
    SmartThings (ST) potentially have a very robust community of developers and users who are constantly improving the capabilities of this component using ST IDE (Integrated Development Environment) based on Groovy language. Some of the most useful capabilities for the SmartThings hub come from the content created by these users.
    The rules and automation capabilities are available with SmartThings such as monitoring home devices, automation of lightening, text notifications, etc. need to be installed from the Marketplace menu. This capability is one of the hubs greatest strengths since it provides a good deal of customization, flexibility, and optimization of logics, including the ability to create one’s rule or use a rule/code developed by other users.

Design

  1. Solid lightweight hardware: The SmartThings hub measures 123 x 107 x 37 mm or 4.2 x 4.9 x 1.3 inches. Unlike the previous versions, this version has been switched to a single power cable for the new hub. Solid and lightweight the hardware is designed to control a variety of devices using ZigBee, ZigBee+, IP, Z-Wave and other wireless protocols. The back of the component includes a reset switch and ports for the power adapter, Ethernet, and two USB connections for future USB expansion capabilities.
  1. Battery Backup: One of the best additions is the battery backup, if you lose power your hub can run on four AA batteries (included) for approximately 10 hours.
  1. Mobile applications – the SmartThings app is much more user-friendly and acts as a remote that can navigate and control all the devices through the central dashboard.

Usability

  1. SmartThings App: When the hub fires up, you will be required to spend some time downloading an iOS or Android app to start the setup and configuration process. With the SmartThing App available across platforms, multiple triggers for alerts can be created and customized as per different actions. You can receive notifications and manage all of your devices with a single tap. You can also design your smart home devices to react to your unique preferences by configuring them through the SmartThings hub.
  2. Extensive support: With SmartThings Hub, Samsung includes support for IFTTT which is a web-based service that allows users to create chains of simple conditional statements (ex. If this, then that) which are triggered based on changes to other web services enabled within IFTTT, Amazon Echo, Apple watch and Nest. All you need is a simple Ethernet connection, and you can get your hub up and running. Samsung’s SmartThings Hub also supports the extra-secure ZigBee wireless network, Z-Wave, Bluetooth and USB connectivity, which is quite extensive in nature and can thus easily connect the majority of your smart home technologies regardless of the brand.
  3. Transition across controls: With SmartThings app, users can smoothly transition to:
    1. Access individual devices via grouping smart devices into ‘rooms’ To organize all of your smart devices by their location and capabilities. Occasionally you may encounter a glitch in the application which may make it difficult to reassign devices to different rooms.
    2. Switch between routines which can trigger a combination of logical actions across devices and
    3. Use third-party applications to access the smart devices in innovative ways
  1. Complex integration with SmartApps: Adding third-party integrations is complex with the SmartThings mobile app. Even though all the varied apps are arranged by categories, the interface still tends to lag and can be challenging to use. There’s no particular way to search for other logics other than scrolling through lists.
    If you are looking for a logic which is new to the app, or logic that you have previously installed, there’s no way to go back in time to locate it. Even though the app is relatively comprehensive, adding third party logic is complex. When it comes to rules, there is no consistency when it comes to naming conventions and interfaces.

Performance

  1. Latency and Response: What’s notable about the SmartThings Hub is the response time. Using the hub for local processing increases the response time even if the bandwidth is slow, smart apps and rules will promptly executes as they are also locally stored.
  1. Fast: A powerful processor and optimized software ensure the Hub can handle the most expansive networks. This means you can add as many devices as you have without the need to worry about whether the hub can handle it.

Additional Accessories:

Starter Kit: The Samsung Smart Things Hub can be purchased as a part of the starter kit with a multi-capability sensor which can do temperature, vibration, door window open and close state, motion sensor, and smart plugs.

The steps for setting up the kit are easy to follow, and you should have it operational in no time. The motion and door sensors work in both the IoT version and basic setup. The smart plug turns devices on and off when triggered. Smartphones can also be configured as a presence indicator, which informs Hub when you get home. The sensors last for around two years with the powered coin cells.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *