Anyone who has had a good experience with SmartThings stability?

I know a lot of folks only post to the forums when they are having issues (maybe most people). If everything is working as expected, there’s no point in posting. If you only read the posts in the support/community forums, you would come away with the perception that the platform is highly unreliable. I’d say that is the case for most products, not just SmartThings.

Reading through the old posts, it definitely seems there have been some growing pains experienced by the SmartThings staff and the platform has had to grow up quickly. I’ve been through the same kind of trial by fire in my own companies. Each time you have a problem, it takes a while to earn back the trust of your users/customers.

I really love the potential of the platform and am glad that there seem to be bonafide options to the $$$$$ “professional” HA systems out there. My own experiences with those have left me dissatisfied. Apparently you don’t necessarily get what you pay for.

I am really curious what the “typical” experience is for folks. How many people have had minimal issues on the SmartThings platform. Has the experience been significantly better in the last 3 months or 6 months. How many folks are more or less happy with their SmartThings system?


As a new user on the SmartThings platform, I have to honestly say that it has exceeded my expectations. While waiting almost a year to make the jump into Home Automation/Control, I reviewed many of the other options/platforms out there. Of course, like most people, I’ve also read about the many negative experiences users have had with various platforms. Like many things, people will be VERY vocal when they have a bad experience, but not nearly as much when their experiences meet (or somewhat exceed) their expectations.

All that said, now that I’ve gotten to the point of this almost being an addiction, the stability of the SmartThings platform and my overall experiences has been great for me so far. The community of users and experts on this forum has also been a HUGE plus, as I feel potential problems that I could have potentially encountered have been adverted due to the excellent advice here.


I have lived through the pains over the last couple of years. Things are MUCH IMPROVED. I have 250+ devices which also adds to the stability. My system works as expected and intended 99% plus of the time (maybe even higher, a random misfire or lag, but nothing noteworthy). When things fail, people express their frustration. And you’re right, they don’t express the positives. It’s not a set and forget sort of proposition though - it does require maintenance (not a lot, but keep an eye on things).

One thing that I believe frustrates people is how to do things? CoRE is really powerful and great, especially for those who can’t code. But it’s not suited for all situations. Many of the great apps are community written and supported, but people act as if they expect a certain level of service. Sometimes people are their own worst enemy.

My system is highly customized and I like how it works. I wrote a lot of it. I am very happy with ST.


I’m sure you’ll get a lot of interesting answers. :sunglasses:

I did want to say that one of the really unusual, and really great things about this particular forum is that people come on all the time to share ideas and post code contributions and project reports. In fact I’d say it’s about 3/4 information and only 1/4 venting.

SmartThings is a very versatile platform and the forums often feel much more like a maker community than just a consumer product discussion. The community is very helpful and supportive for all kinds of situations, from the simplest to the really complex. So it’s definitely not your typical complaint forum. There’s a lot of brainstorming that goes on.

For those interested, check out some of the project reports on the quick browse lists in the community – created wiki:

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I have been using ST for a couple years now. I still have the V1 hub.

Since the last major meltdown at the beginning of last year, I have been very happy. I have 50+ physical devices and many virtual devices and things have worked quite well for me.


I have been using a V2 hub since April of last year. I have been quite happy with my experiences so far. My needs are no where near as complex as many of the users that post here. However, my routines are probably 98-99% reliable.

Been using it for over a year now.
I’m really tempting fate here, but my setup has been pretty consistent all the way through.
I’m in UK on the EU hub and we don’t seem to get many issues.
All I get is the occasional light not coming on with motion (very occasional) and a bit of lag around once a week.
Nothing drastic.
I do however get the ST motion sensors stop reporting. Battery pull does it.
I actually had one this week. It needed a new battery even though it was reporting 56%. (There is a thread about this though).

I’ve been using SmartThings for almost 3 years. While stability has improved somewhat since last summer, I still give it 3 start out of 5 for the following reasons:

  • Schedules are still not as reliable as they should be.
  • Recurring issues with sunrise/sunset time not updating.
  • Sticky sensors (reporting open when it’s actually closed).
  • Occasional cloud server outages, lasting from a few minutes to several hours.
  • No configuration backup/restore.

I started with ST in September 2016 primarily for the home alarm system (SHM) and it has worked well beyond my expectations. I consider myself a very basic user, (14 physical devices), with no custom code. I am also very technically inclined, (40+ years IT mainframe experience), and would say that has proved helpful. Hoping not to offend anyone, I would say that if you’re over 55 years old, and not technically inclined then at the present time ST, or any other home automation DIY system will be a challenge.

To date, I’ve experienced one significant issue, November 19, 2016, where Samsung/ST made a software change that caused about an 8 hour outage and other issues in SHM…and as I’ve said in this community they did not handle user impact/notification very well. Other than that, on the occasions where I’ve had my “duh huh” moments and triggered the alarm, it has always worked. I do run several “smart routines” using the marketplace apps and those have worked well and meet my basic needs.

In reality, for the most part ST is server based, and responses are not what I would call instantaneous, usually within a second or two, and that works for me.

I agree with other comments that there is LOTS OF HELP available in the “community”, some whining, and some out and out “bit@hing”, but overall I think it’s great and we’re lucky to have it!

My $.02


Aside from the formerly mentioned repeated issue with sunrise/sunset routines and the delay issues with Hue ( every time Hue pushes an update, so not really ST’s fault) my system ( 130+ devices) has been pretty rock solid for months.

I keep it as simple as possible and use Smartlighting for as much as possible. Yes I have a lot of custom device types and smartapps for devices not natively supported, but not excessively ( I don’t think)

Only real issue is the repeated notifications that seems to be plaguing the ( Android, not sure about IPhone) app of late. I really don’t need 3 consecutive notifications that a door was opened. Although I think that got fixed, now that I think about it.

I DO NOT use ST for " security" with the exception of linking my Nest protects to add extra notifications if something goes wrong.

I do know there have been some occasional issues of late with adding new devices & routines or accessing IDE, but in all honesty those have not affected me personally. If I have to wait a couple hours to add or change a device it is not the end of the world. I have more " hiccups" in my CCTV/IP cams due to network fluctuations that I see hiccups with ST.

  1. Definitely has improved dramatically over the low points and over the “average reliability” of say … a year ago.

  2. Still has some hiccups … most are very short. But any long / wide spread outages are concerning. is being updated more quickly. A great thing!

  3. I’m on Hub V1 and don’t feel the need to migrate to Hub V2 … I am pretty sure there are some problems that only occur on Hub V2 (which may or may not be offset by Hub V2’s resilience to some cloud outages … the lower latency for Smart Lighting and Smart Home Monitor would be nice…).


“Good” is a relative concept. I’m one of the (few, I guess) who have had ST for well over a year but have not experienced the general outages and other stability pains that others have. I’ve had a handful of issues here and there with a device needing to be dropped and readded, none of which amounted to more than minor annoyances (in spite of whatever colorful language I might have used at the time). But I chalk this up to nothing more than luck of the draw when it comes to which server(s) my hub is being handled by.

So all-in-all I’d say that, in terms of stability, yes…my experience has been a good one overall. There are a few usability/functionality issues that persist to this day (the aforementioned lack of a backup function, the you’re-on-your-own attitude toward hub migration, etc) that cause me to scratch my head a lot, but those aren’t stability issues.


All Home Automation is local–including the definition of “stable”

One thing that @bamarayne and I have talked about a lot is that “stable” means different things to different people. Or even just at different times in your life.

Before I got sick, I was a network engineer. Crawling under a table and recabling stuff, popping the batteries on a couple of sensors, pouring over the logs and trying a different configuration wasn’t just my job – – it was fun. Troubleshooting itself was satisfying. So my definition of a “stable” system was one that I could mostly keep running even if it required an hour or so of maintenance every week. I never thought about the maintenance time as a cost of the system.

After I was in the wheelchair and lost most of the use of my hands, all of that changed. I can’t do a battery pull by myself. Just getting to the screen with the log entries takes about 10 minutes. And then I have to listen to what’s there. I still enjoy solving a problem, but it better be something I can do with my eyes closed and without requiring the use of my hands.

So now I look at what consumer products designers call MFOP. Maintenance Free Operating Period. Most consumer products aim for a 12 month MFOP. Certainly at least six months. Maybe there’s a firmware update in there every once in a while, but it should be something where the consumer doesn’t really have to do anything except wait for it to finish. Eyes closed, no hands. :sunglasses:

In my 2 1/2 year experience with home automation, quite a few products hit that target. Including the hue bridge, Logitech Harmony, echo, HomeKit.

SmartThings doesn’t come close. Even though these days most of the problems are minor, it’s rare that I go more than a week without running into something that requires more than the “eyes closed, no hands” approach.

So I guess my first question would be how do you define “stable”?

If stable is “90% of my scheduled rules run 90% of the time, but I have to spend about 30 minutes a week making that happen” then that’s probably true for most SmartThings customers at this point.

If stable is “99.99% of my scheduled rules run 99.99% of the time and I don’t have to touch the system for six months at a time” then that’s probably not true for hardly anybody.

So “stable” and “six-month MFOP” are two very different things.

Counting transactions–or days?

Also there’s the question of what “most of the time” means. Technical people tend to want to take the total number of transactions and then look at the total number of misses and come up with a percentage. But that’s not how consumer products are typically rated. Instead, you look at the number of days that are error free, and take that as a percentage over the number of days in the measurement period. That is, a thermostat might do 1000 transactions per day, but if it noticeably fails once every day, the consumer will rightly judge it as broken even though it might have a transactional success rate of 99.9%. (Its MFOP, in contrast, would be 0. :disappointed_relieved: )

Plan B

Finally, there’s the question of what the Plan B is. Take that thermostat that gets almost all of its transactions right, but still noticeably fails once a day. Maybe all you have to do to fix it is to walk over, turn the dial to the right, then turn it back to the setting you want.

For a lot of people, that would be so minor they wouldn’t even think about it. It would be annoying, and they would notice if a new model that they got later didn’t have the problem, but the fix would just become a habit. You feel cold, you walk to the thermostat, you twitch the dial, done.

for me, I can’t walk, I can’t reach the thermostat, I can’t turn the dial even if I could reach the thermostat. And my service dog can’t do it either. And if I do get cold it increases the frequency and intensity of muscle spasms. So that daily failure would be way more than just a glitch at my house. It would be something I needed to fix right away, and that would need to stay fixed.

So there are multiple factors that go into evaluating what “stable” means at one house versus another. How much time and energy are you willing to put into troubleshooting, and how frustrating do you find that process? One man’s glitch is another man’s catastrophe. :wink:

Knowing what your own level of tolerance for glitches is, or to turn it around what your own minimum MFOP is, is the first step towards being satisfied with whatever system you end up with. :heart_eyes:


I agree with everything the @JDRoberts just said. When it comes to the measurement of stability with the forum, it really is, Stability in the eyes of the beholder.

How nice would it be if we had a set standard that everything could be measured against… Then we would all be on the same page!

But, that isn’t the case… lol

As JD so elegantly stated, the stability will be what you perceive it to be within your own realm of reality.

In my case, I feel that my system is very stable. There are of course the occasional glitches, but those are glitches that I’m willing to live with. I can live with them, but others may not be willing to do so.

I have not had to rebuild anything in a while. In my opinion, reliability within my universe has improved steadily since the the March Meltdown of 2016.

I started with ST in October of 2015, and I have to say… I love the system. I highly recommend the system to some people, and to others I tell them just to get up and flip the switch themselves.


Others may disagree but I also keep in mind that I paid $100 for the hub and no monthly maintenance fee. If I was paying a fee, I would be all over every little glitch. Kind of like I am with my DSL provider. I consider minor outages and a glitch now and then just part of the inexpensive platform.


As they say, “The secret to happiness is having low expectations” :wink:

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Been with Smartthings since December 16th, so a newbie, but the stability/reliability has been very good for me. Only have about 25-30 devices, so not a big system, but everything seems to work when I want it, how I want it.

But, this is still early days in many ways, more tinkering in the IDE required than a lot of folks would want.

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I’ve been with ST since December 2015 and since last summer’s major outages, things have been stable for me.

I’m no longer seeing corruption in Rule Machine (yes, I still use Rule Machine).
In fact, my only complaints are on the ST hardware itself…and not the hub. Arrival sensor battery holders are too fragile. I’ve had a v2 motion sensor fail already.

3rd party integrations work well. Custom code works well.


Fairly stable, for the most part, I guess…maybe. But, I definitely wouldn’t hand off my security or health (elder care) to it.


The sad thing is, I’m now rather bored because it’s just part of the house and does what it’s supposed to.