Ironically. I have a degree in electrical engineering. I have been waiting a few years to get started in home automation just to let all the players settle out , and all the crapware to subside and hopefullly to see some standardization set in… (otherwise I will be embarrassed if i cant this damn thing working )
But I have to say, im surprised how complicated things still are in 2022. I paid almost $250 for this schlage lock and its like a ‘quest’ trying to figure out how to control it with smarthings hub.
I dont understand why samsung didnt keep investing in the hub and making sure there was a good eco system for device support from the various manufacturers… am i being too hard on the home automation industry?
Smart Lock Guest Access should be available for you since you are in the US. if it is not showing, you should contact ST support. Usually the issue arises if a user creates their samsung account in a different country and relocates to the US but there could also be other reasons. Contact ST support and let them investigate.
Ironically it was simpler at the start, Samsung took over and in there quest to include all there devices and change Smartthings into todays nonsensical disaster it has become the opposite to what it used to be, now it is frustratingly complicated
hi Fido and other experienced Users
what is your opinion for the ‘20,000 foot view’. for someone like me who is just getting started with home automation and hasnt invested too much effort yet in ST or any other platform or standard yet…
I dont want to get stuck in one ecosystem (like apple or amazon) and having to pay subscription fees, thus i like the idea of an open system
Im comfy with technology (hardware and software) so I dont need solution that is turnkey . Im willing to do some work making everything work together as long as im not reinventing the wheel
-Id like to future proof my investment as best as possible
You have peculiar timing There is a big standard called Matter coming at the end of the year. Several large companies like Apple, Samsung SmartThings, Google and Amazon are the ones leading and developing it with the goal to make it easier for smart home devices to work with all platforms simultaneously. Other open source platforms such as Home Assistant have also pledged to support it. Obviously it’s hard to predict the future in the smart home space as far as standards go, but this one seems to be going in the right direction. IMO your first qualifier right now should be the platform or company having signed on to support Matter. The good news is SmartThings is onboard and currently has an Early Access program with some select manufacturers to test Matter devices. But as far as which specific devices to purchase right now that will remain platform agnostic…it’s a little hard to tell since it’s hard to tell how each company plans to integrate Matter specifically.
Really great questions, but quite far afield from the topic of this thread. I suggest you start a new thread under projects with a title like “Advice for someone just starting with home automation?” I’m sure you’ll get many responses, some contradictory.
Also note that @Fido is in the UK. Since device selection varies by region, the answers will also vary for that reason.
And as @Automated_House pointed out, the really huge news in the home automation industry is Matter, which is a new standard intended to solve many of the interoperability issues. All the big players for DIY home automation are on board, including Samsung, Amazon, Apple, Philips, Schlage, Yale, and Google, but it’s not here yet. See the following discussion thread.
As far as choosing a platform NOW based on announced future support for Matter, I don’t think we really know for sure what will be delivered until it arrives. For example, based on what’s been published so far by the individual companies I have my doubts about how extensive the SmartThings support will be. The company has already announced they are only going for one way integration (being able to bring other companies’ Matter-compliant devices into the SmartThings app) NOT two-way (being able to expose devices connected to a ST account to other Matter-compliant app). While some other platforms have announced their intention to provide two way Matter support.
Further, SmartThings has not said one way or the other whether their app, which is currently cloud-dependent, will run locally for control of Matter devices. I suspect it will still be cloud-dependent, but we’ll have to wait and see. (And again, some other companies already offer apps which only require the internet for voice control and away-from-home activities, but do everything else locally. But with ST, if your internet is out, the app doesn’t work, even if it’s on the same WiFi network as the hub.)
Anyway, there’s just a lot of changes coming in the next 12 months that make it hard to make good recommendations right now.
Oh, and one more thing: reliable professionally-installed home automation has been available for about 10 years, but it’s expensive (say 15% of the cost of the house) and typically has a hefty annual maintenance fee. And a limited selection of devices.
What most people here are looking for, and it sounds like you are, too, is a DIY system with a whole house budget of under $5,000, minimal ongoing contract costs, and the ability to add many different devices from many different brands. And they usually want reliability, but forget to list it as a project priority. That’s what just isn’t available yet.
You can get good reliability from plug and play systems that limit the device choices. You can get a system like SmartThings which is very powerful and works with many different brands—but historically has had less reliability. And may require tinkering or custom code to get the full functionality you want.
So right now there’s no one best answer: you have to know your own priorities really well to find a system that will best match your project. But we are ALL hoping that Matter will improve both reliability and device choice in the next 12 months. We will see.
As long as you keep things simple and realistic ( i dont consider locks either of them) but each to there own, Smartthings works fine
The app design stinks but it works
There are other HA platforms and all are trying hard to do there best for there users
My eggs are in the Smartthings basket and apart from the app UI, i am a happy camper
@JDRoberts mentioned i am in the Uk, with respect it matters little where your geographic lies, what matters is how a smart home is created and how it evolves with your needs, i liken it to solving issues you never previously had
If i took every device out of my house it would work perfectly but then i like saying ‘Alexa, goodnight’ and the house goes to sleep with lights switching off, others coming on, security switching states and my bed ready and warm