Samsung is migrating SmartThings to a new app: “Samsung Connect.” This app requests permissions to access all contacts and files on my cell phone. This is highly intrusive.
I have contacted Samsung three times asking for explanations of why these permissions are necessary. Specifically, I asked “Why does SmartThings need to know the phone number of my dentist to turn on my kitchen lights?”
In each case I have received a nonsensical reply. Here is how Tony responded a few days ago: “Contacts are a permission the app asks for because it wants to verify user information for the app as well as save your login credentials.” Huh? That makes no sense. How, exactly, does the Samsung Connect App use my contacts to verify my user information? I don’t think that information is even in my contacts list.
SmartThings knows a lot about me. It knows when I am home. It knows when I watch television, eat breakfast, and open my garage door. It has access to my cameras, thermostat, and door locks. Samsung needs to place the privacy of the SmartThings community above all else. Until they can offer a coherent and logical explanation of why the new Samsung Connect App requires unrestricted access to EVERYTHING on my cell phone, I am not going to switch to the new App. Indeed, Samsung’s behavior is causing to wonder whether the company is trustworthy at all.
I welcome responses from the SmartThings community, as well as an “official” response from Samsung. Hopefully Samsung will come forward with a real explanation, and not the nonsensical drivel they have shared so far. The replies that I have received have only increased my concern about their intent.