Edge and Automation

So there have been a ton of messages about the new SmartThings Edge platform rolling out and just as many about a “replacement” for WebCore. In order to not have top read them all has there been any updates about a replacement or other options for making complex automations once Edge rolls out? I would hate to leave ST due to the lack of automation flexibility.

The way forward for automations is supposed to be Rules, often referred to as the Rules API. They first entered preview in January 2020 and at the beginning of this year Routines (then called Automations of course) and Scenes were reimplemented to use Rules.

The expressed intent is for Rules to eventually be able to handle complex automations that webCoRE is currently being used for. Currently Routines are probably using most of the available functionality in terms of conditions and actions but not the full power of the available control structures.

Back in late 2019 the idea of reimplementing webCoRE to use Rules was put forward, along with a proof of concept. I thought it was clear that it was going to be down to the webCoRE community to do this if they wanted it but many others, perhaps the majority, formed the impression that ST would be driving this.

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As @orangebucket noted, Edge is a different piece of the new platform, with edge being specific to how hubs will work in the new architecture.

Automation logic is a different piece, and was released a few months into beta before edge.

You have three choices in the new architecture for any given use case:

  1. see if you can do what you want to just by creating a routine in the current smartthings app. It has a lot more functionality than previous app versions did.

  2. use the rules API that @orangebucket mentioned. It’s supposed to end up as being comparable to Webcore although it’s still in development. You can read more about that in the following section of the forum:

3a) write your own smartapp in any programming language you want, host it yourself, and communicate with smartthings through the cloud API. That’s real programming, but you can do whatever you want.

3b) You could even buy a hubitat hub, host their community’s version of Webcore there , and use the cloud API to communicate over to devices running on your smartthings account. That’s a little clunky, but it should work. So basically hubitat becomes the server that you use for Webcore rather than writing everything from scratch.

So there are several choices, and you may have reasons for picking a different one of those options for different use cases. But you should be able to get at least the same amount of rules functionality that you have from the old architecture, and probably even more. :sunglasses: