When I first started building my smart home system a year and a half ago, being a Samsung brand loyalist to the core, deciding which hub to purchase was a no-brainer. I started adding devices weekly which provided me with a pretty constant learning curve with the Smarthings system, insofar as the the capabilites available through the two apps on my phone. Eventually, as a function of necessity and after much research here, I first started exploring the Smarthings IDE site, and realizing the enhanced functionality and capabilities it offered.
Everything was great until one day, I learned the hard way what all this “local control” vs. “cloud control” yammering I had seen on the forums but not concerned myself with. Because I had horrible internet reliability at the time, I wanted to create an automation which cycled the power of my cable modem. So I purchased a “Smart” power strip, stayed really put in some time configuring the system which if internet connection dropped, it would delay 30 seconds, turn the modem outlet off, wait 30 seconds, and then turn on the modem outlet. You know the rest of the story, but suffice to say, I learned the difference between the local and cloud systems that night, and which hubs offered which.
I made the decision to jump over to Hubitat, and would eventually get my internet reset automation up and to bind as I had envisioned. I found the differences with the Hubitat system to be easily learned, and as I had done with Smartthings, became moderately proficient with the system. In the 12 months which followed, I equipped my home with the Google Home system, and found the integrations available with Hubitat to be adequate and useful.
I could trigger Hubitat actions using a verbal command to any of the Google Minis I had around the house, which soon became the exclusive means to operate the lights in my house. I wasn’t sure why certain device types wouldn’t be picked up by the Google Hub system (contact sensors, leak sensors, etc.), but it didn’t have too much of an impact on overall capabilites.
This was because with the Hubitat Hub, I could also send Google Home audible announcements based on Hubutat triggers, which I did for many devices. If a door opened, I was able to select which of my Google Home Minis would announce the custom message I had set in the configuration.
As a result, I was able to consider this all as a single smart home automation system with two fully integrated controllers. So what happened? Why did I abandon a system which was working so well? I imagine my reasoning wouldn’t be enough for many people, but it was something that created an ever increasing sense of disappointment I felt with regards to Hubitat. That being the circa-1992, absolutely embarrassing UI that I was required to work through with anything and everything Hubitat. If you’ve not seen it, Smartthings UI is 4,000,000% better to look at, and doesn’t make you feel like you’re using a Commodore 64 in your 13" CRT TV.
So now I’m back, and hadn’t realized that many of these integration options I had become accustomed to were not a thing on Smartthings. Right now, I’m essentially running two separate smart home automation hubs, which frustratingly barely talk to each other. The Samsung Smartthings Hub v3 and Google Home.
Yes, I can push commands to Smartthings via Google Home (which does integrate with Roomba), but can’t go the other way… Easily. This should be easy, and not require adding some physical node device (which needs to be correctly configured) in order to have Smartthings to Google Home interoperability. Especially when I know it can be done, done easily, not require a node, and allow users to have Smartthings triggers result in Google Home audible alerts.
Isn’t Smartthings Java Groovy the same as Hubitat Java Groovy? I’m not a coder (despite a few attempts to learn), and I only have a 35,000’ understanding of how these two systems work behind the UI. That said, can someone explain why Smartthings is incapable of playing nice with Google Home (or vice versa) when Hubitat was?