Per title. I don’t really want to give my kids full access to all my devices because they are jokers and will just start randomly turning lights on and off on me. BUT I’d like to give them access to the lights in their corner of the house so they could enjoy the conveniences of home automation. Is it possible to give someone access to a subset of your devices? And if so, how?
ActionTiles is a great way to create securely limited dashboards (“Panels”) for kids, neighbors, caretakers, sitters, etc.; because they can only access the Tiles (devices) on the Panel you share to their Account and nothing else - they can’t get lost in the SmartThings App(s), nor randomly turn on/off lights you did not grant to them. (The SmartThings App(s) are only needed for family members for phone-based presence, or to acknowledge/dismiss SHM alerts)
And the Panels you build for them would be tailored to be super simple and focused for their needs.
For security and simplicity, sharing can only be done to any other ActionTiles Account (email ID). If your kids (“Buddies”) don’t have their own Emails, most email providers let you create Aliases trivially: https://support.actiontiles.com/…/912-how-to-use-an…
More info on Panel Sharing is at this additional link: https://support.actiontiles.com/…/6422-how-to-securely…
Please give secure Sharing a try and write to Support@ActionTiles.com if you have any questions, concerns, or compliments :-).
A few Customers endorsed the above response, in the SmartThings Users Group on Facebook, here:
Not with the official features, but it’s a very popular use case. it’s typically done with a “dashboard app,” which may just run in a web browser. ( some people call these a “control panel.“) So you can have it available on either a phone or a tablet. But you limit the display to just the devices you want to be available.
There are two very popular ones that are from paid third parties, actiontiles and sharptools.
There are also a number of free ones, which are usually projects people have developed for themselves and then shared with the community.
All of these have different features, some are easier to install than others. The two paid versions typically have the most features.
You can read about all of these, both paid and free, by going to the Quick browse lists in the community – created wiki, going Down near the bottom of that page for the “project reports” section and then choosing the list for dashboards.
I think all of the following pictures are from action tiles, it’s probably the most popular.
These are interesting solutions but another one occurred to me … could I have two hubs and put the devices I want to give access to on one hub, and the rest on the other? Would it even work to have two hubs in one dwelling, or would they interfere with each other?
You can certainly do that, it’s not usually a problem in terms of interference. However, depending on your kids, unless you have one hub per kid you’re likely to run into the same problem. Classic case is the eight-year-old turning off the lights in the 10-year-old ‘s room.
Plus, If you use any of the popular voice assistants, including Amazon echo and Google assistant, you’re going to run into huge problems. A single echo or Google account can only interact with a single smartthings hub at the present time. The same is true for IFTTT and some other third-party integrations.
The multiple hub approach usually makes sense if you have, for example, a separate home office or an Airbnb suite and you really do want to have the two completely independent of each other. But is soon as you want to share anything between them, including voice assistant integration, it’s way more of a headache than just using a dashboard app.
Great brainstorming, but I think that’s rather overkill for your use case. Having separate Hubs (in separate SmartThings “Location” objects or even separate Accounts) is highly secure, but it adds a lot of complexity and locks out those separate devices from participating in Automations from the main Location. For example, you may want to turn out the kid’s lights at bed time along with locking the doors - Having the lights and lock on 2 distinct Hubs means you need 2 separate automations, and have to toggle back and forth in the SmartThings App(s) etc.
On the other hand, if someone happens to have multiple-Hubs for some good reasons, ActionTiles can mix & match Devices from multiple Locations/Hubs on one or more Dashboards.
So you could have master Panel(s) for yourself that show both, and specialized restricted Panels shared to the kids. But this secure sharing does not require 2 Hubs at all.
This did occur to me … and would totally be my kids, 10 years ago! These days only one is at home; the other have moved to his college town and has no desire to move back home! So really I just need one zone for the one kid who is living in the basement. Of course, the other issue is, do I really want to make him even MORE comfortable down there … ?!
The assistant issue also wouldn’t be a problem as he could connect his zone to his google home while the rest of the house would stay on the Echo devices I’ve got scattered around.
Something to think about. Thanks for the ideas!