FAQ: Confused by "Regular" Hub and "ADT" SmartThings Hub. Need clarification (2019)

Not specifically. I’ve read & reread the post several times. I’m looking for a concise list of differences between the v3 ST hub and the ADT hub. Your very first post (14d) comes close, but doesn’t specifically address the differences between the two. However, it does appear that the biggest difference is that if you want professional monitoring, the ADT hub has the integraded touchscreen that functions like the traditional keypad, it also means that I’ll have to change out all of my Iris door/window sensors for the ADT type, which appear to NOT be Zigbee or Z-Wave, but something else. Others have panels/keypads, but ADT seems to be the biggest name in the security industry, and as far as I can tell, the only company that’s not “afraid” of ST!

And ADT can’t tell me the differences (aside from the obvious difference of the display), either. Heck, the ADT rep I’ve been working with can’t adequately tell you the difference between Z-Wave and Zigbee, beyond that they’re mesh networks! I don’t expect him to be an expert, but I have requested (numerous times) for somebody at ADT to put me in touch with someone who has technical expertise. So far, nothing. Kind of like calling Microsoft Tech Support: I want to speak to someone who has more knowledge of the product than I do. Usually, I get someone who’s just reading a script!


I think at this point, at least for me, I need someone “official” from Samsung, or ADT to come on here and state in writing that the Samsung Smartthings / ADT Smartthings is a worthy investment that it will be there for us when we need it down the road, not just this year, or even next, but for at least the next 5 years or so.

There is no sense in my spending a penny of my money on a system that may just be phasing out in short order like Iris did. If Samsung doesn’t care to be bothered with maintaining backwards compatibility with their own stuff, why should I sink money in with them? This isn’t a tablet, or smart phone that you replace every 2 years or so, this is part of the home systems, which on average get replaced or at least upgraded somewhat every 10 - 15 years or so…

This whole home security / automation space reminds me of the home / personal computer industry of the early 1980s, where we had TI99s, Timex Sinclairs, Atari 800s, Commodore 64s, Apple II, IBM PC AT, Tandy TRS-80 etc… And none of it talked with each other at all well. I couldn’t do my homework on my Atari 800xl and expect my teachers Apple IIc to be able to read the files I created. By the late 1980s the industry more or less standardized on the x86 platform, data formats, ASCII etc… were commonplace, and the computers of that era did a much better job talking with each other.

Nowadays nobody gives much thought about sharing files from their Mac to their colleagues on PC, or Linux, or even Android or IOS tablets… It just works… For the most part…

There really needs to be some firmer set standards that all vendors should (must) comply with, including backards compatibility, talking to each others hardware (I.E. a Dell PC can use an HP printer even though Dell makes and markets printers).

I think until such time as the industry standardizes, and allows the best innovators, and producers of quality hardware and systems at the most competitive prices rise to the top, we are going to see a bevy of failures, and ticked off consumers left in their wake.

With these issues of constant change, lack of backards compatibility, and lack of standards compliance, or even lack of existing standards, I am seriously giving second thoughts to investing in the automation side of things, and simply like I said, going with security / home monitoring, which does not leave Smartthings looking all that good by comparison to the competition…

I would also appreciate an official statement, but judging from the past, I just don’t think we’re going to get one.

Just look at the people who bought the new smartthings-branded button Just a few months ago because it was literally the only device other than a smart phone That could arm or disarm smart home monitor with the V3 or V2 hub through the new app and they wanted either a panic button or maybe a disarm button for a dog walker—and then that capability was removed about a month later. And it doesn’t appear to be coming back, there have been several app updates since then, including the big new one, and the capability is still missing. :disappointed_relieved:

There was never any official explanation on that, nor an apology for changing the features of a brand new device very soon after the return period ended.

My guess is that most of the employees who do occasionally participate in this forum, who are on the smartthings development team, have no idea what the business decisions will be at the Samsung corporate level. And wouldn’t be authorized to discuss them publicly if they did know. :zipper_mouth_face:

The only way I know of to ever get an official response at this point is to ask publicly on Facebook or Twitter and then you should at least get an official response from marketing.


This does not speak well for Smartthings. A pity too. On a feature for feature comparison, I really do like smartthings, but I am VERY leery of buying into an unstable platform.

It’s the presence of these additional products to the lineups from the respective partner businesses, and their relative silence on what the plans for the product lines moving forward, combined with flaky availability of the various products gives plenty of pause to potential buyers, which will hurt the bottom line of the products, which of course feeds into the problems and likely business failure of the platform.

It more or less boils down to incompetent management mishandling the PR and misunderstanding the optics of their corporate actions.

Don’t get me wrong, I want to be comfortable with Smartthings, but how can I be?

I just got off the phone with Samsung / ADT Smartthings support. According to what they told me, ADT Smartthings is not going away anytime soon. The aquisitions are additions to ADTs portfolio, and the Samsung / Smartthings partnership, while not performing as well as they had hoped, is an important part of their portfolio.

I suspect ADT isn’t thrilled with the number of folks that have bought the ADT Smarttthings branded equipment, but have opted for self monitoring. I somewhat seriously doubt they are making much from the initial sale of the hardware…

I did advise the telephone rep to let their higher ups know there needs to be a stronger presence on forums like this, and facebook etc… allaying peoples concerns over these issues…

Time will tell… And at least with local / self monitoring it looks like at least the system won’t just stop working entirely like the Iris cloud based solution will…

It should be noted that a sour taste left in consumers mouths by Samsung misstepping something like this, could sour and brand loyalty they may enjoy with consumers…


Doesn’t really matter right? I mean, you can’t even find the stupid thing in stores anymore… can’t improve sales of something you don’t sell

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Not sure what stores had it before. I can find it on Amazon no problem. B&H Photo Video same thing, plenty in stock. My local Lowes has 5 in stock of the starter kit. Only place I know of that is low, or out of stock is Best Buy, and I rarely, if ever do business with them.

Admittedly the $4.99 price on the door and window sensors was REALLY appealing, but not shocking they are out of stock at that price right?

Plenty of other outlets have them for decent prices.

Not saying go, or no go. Use your own priorities to make your decisions.

I doubt that “Support” has any real insight into Samsung or ADT’s strategy. They may have been given a script, or are speculating.

When a company officially discontinues a product, they do so with a single official announcement; not by leaks. Absent an official announcement one way or the other Consumers need to read between the lines and decide if ADT appears to be a strategic part of the SmartThings family… or not.

Was there ever an official announcement for the Connect Home mesh WiFi?


Sad, but true. And with the uncertainty I am certainly leaning toward ring floodlight cameras and seeing where Arcus open source Iris goes…

I’m hoping someone can clarify for me. If I end buying the ADT branded hub, then ADT kills support for it and Samsung smartthings is still around, will it still function as a normal smartthings setup? The only reason I would like the ADT version is the cellular backup function for security.

I understand you can get a UPS backup, and a router that switches to cellular service, but I honestly don’t want to buy an expensive router, monthly data plan, and the hassle when I could get the same thing with the ADT hub. I’m just worried if ADT cans the whole thing, I have an expensive paperweight.

I assume the ADT branded hub works with everything the regular smartthings hub does?

I appreciate the help, I’m an Iris refugee, and want to get everything setup before Iris stops working.

I have it in writing from Samsung that they have no plans to do away with the ADT Smartthings platform in the forseeable future. For whatever that is worth.

There is always self monitoring within the ADT Smartthings setup.

Your concerns are no joke, and I share them, with some extremity, however I am not quite as concerned with timing. I have the Ring camera setup going that gives me alerts if anyone, or anything of concern enters my property. My biggest concerns are thus self monitored.

The more research I do into the various platforms available, the less confident I am in that any one of them is going to be reliably available over the long term. I.E. a span of greater than 5 years. So any system you, or I invest in is simply put, a gamble.

From my research, I hate to say it, but smartthings seems like the safest gamble, and ADT Smartthings is the only platform that truly replaces Iris…

If it sounds like I am happy about that, I can assure you, I am not. But there isn’t a lot I can do about it.

Until and unless the industry adopts truly standard protocols much like the PC industry did decades ago, this is going to stay nothing more than a consumer guessing game leaving us at the whiims of companies that do not have our best interests at heart and vendor locked so there is very little we can do to move from one platform to another except fully replace what we had…

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Did they define “foreseeable”? The terms of service you agreed to says smartthings can add or remove features at any time.

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No they absolutely did not. Again see my comments about this all being a gamble.

It would appear that DIY security and Home Automation is a cluster f*** and we either put up with it, or do without.

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Assistance connecting ADT Hub with existing ST hub. I picked up the ADT hub with the hopes we can add to the existing ST stuff we have. We like the idea of having a panel. I am hoping to be able to use the panel as an alternative for those who don’t have the App or whom we don’t want to invite to use this.

Is there anything special I need to do to set this up. If someone can help point me in the right direction, it would be appreciated.

They don’t work together in the way that you imagine. Each is a master hub, so smartthings expects that there will be only one of them per location.

While it is technically possible to add two hubs to the same location if you are using the new app, they advise against it, and it specifically won’t work with the ADT model. :disappointed_relieved:


Note: It is not recommended to add a SmartThings Hub to a Location with an existing Hub.

I am not necessarily wanting the ADT panel to act as a hub, I am wanting it to act as a button more or less, is there another option for this. As most mentioned I was able to pick up the panel at a huge discount.

The ADT panel itself is a hub, and only functions as a hub in SmartThings. It has to be the master on that location, and it does not work with any other smartthings hub. Like I said, unfortunately it’s just not going to work the way that you imagined. It’s not an add on to your existing system.

If you are just looking for a button for your current system, see the following FAQ:

FAQ: Full list of buttons and remotes confirmed to work with SmartThings [Not all devices listed work with the 2020 Platform]