Far too intrusive, back to the store!

(Walt Brubaker) #1

This device lasted 10 minutes. Now it’s back in the box and going back to the store.
First thing, the app wanted access to:
All my contacts
My location
Can’t log out of the app; it wants to track me everywhere.
No browser based choice, Quickstart gives only one option: load the app at www.smartthings.com/start/
App gives no option at all, either share all contacts or can’t install, can’t operate Smartthings hub.

Vera doesn’t require my contact list be shared. Problem solved. Hello Vera, voting with my $$.

(Chad) #2

If you have a smart phone too late for that anyways

(Robin) #3

You can say no to allowing access to contacts and location (on iOS at least)… but it makes the app better if you say yes.

Smartthings is not for conspiracy theorists… if you’ve got nothing to hide why do you care… or maybe you have got something to hide?

If you are so worried, maybe you should go live in a box at the North Pole lol.

(Walt Brubaker) #4

Probably the government does have everything but that doesn’t mean I want to share my details with corporations which have no right or need to know. I signed up with LinkedIn and it immediately farmed my contacts, sending out emails to hundreds of people using my name and asking them to join up. I don’t trust corporations with my contacts or to track my location at all times. Those items should be under my control.
The Android app will not work unless I grant permission to farm my entire contact list, including people I don’t ever want to contact again but google helpfully farmed from every email ever sent over a decade.
If I am the servant of this box, why do I have to pay for it? If I have to buy it, shouldn’t it serve me instead of dictate to me? This relationship started out badly and I’m sending the box to the store.

(Andrew) #5

Dude. You bought a cloud based home automation system that uses geofencing! What the heck did you expect?

It seems weird to me that it needs your contacts, but seriously. Think about this for a second. You are willing to give Samsung access to your home’s physical security in a very real, non-virtual way, but you draw the line on them knowing some email addresses? That freaks you out?! What happens when they literally have the keys to your front door?

Don’t get me wrong. I see no need for Samsung to know who my friends are. But on the scale of privacy concerns and abuse potential in SmartThings, that’s small ball.

(Robin) #6

They ask for contacts (on android) so you can quickly choose phone numbers when setting up SMS automations… no other reason.

On iOS we don’t get that feature which sucks! And they don’t ask for the contacts either, which proves there is no other purpose for the android request.

(Walt Brubaker) #7

I just wanted to change my thermostat. I do not want to give Samsung access to my doors, locks, or travels.
When you rent an apartment, does the landlord have the right to enter any time he wants and go through your stuff?
When you register your car, do the police have the right to open the trunk any time they want?
When you get a safety deposit box, does the bank have the right to riffle through the contents?
When you file your taxes online, does your internet provider have a right to make copies of your 1040?
When you buy a file cabinet, does Staples Office Supply have the right to enter your home and see all the folders?
When you buy Microsoft Windows, does MS have the right to download your entire disk to their servers?

(Dustin Clark) #8

The SmartThings platform seems like it would be overkill for just adjusting your thermostat. Clearly you won’t be using presence detection. Shouldn’t even bother registering for an account. I hope you are using a VPN at all times as well.

(Steve White) #9

SmartThings is far too overkill for simple thermostat management. Nest, Honeywell, EcoBee all have stand alone apps although I’m sure you’ll need to provide some personal information to use those too.

As others have indicated, for what SmartThings does, its perfectly reasonable to expect that it needs the access it requests. The analogies you provided to justify your position are so far off base there is no point in acknowledging them. Suffice it to say you are trying to water a house plant with a fire hose which is clearly not what you want to do. Return it and buy another thermostat with a stand alone app. Just keep the tin foil handy. [quote=“watbru, post:1, topic:78542, full:true”]
This device lasted 10 minutes. Now it’s back in the box and going back to the store.
First thing, the app wanted access to:
All my contacts
My location
Can’t log out of the app; it wants to track me everywhere.

No thank you. I just wanted to change my thermostat, not send my niece’s email to Skynet.

(Benji) #10

I feel like you and any home automation app aren’t going to get along.

Did you seriously buy it, return it AND THEN come here to complain about it? What is this going to achieve? Did you just want us to just sit here and listen to you complain?

(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #11


(Wayne) #12

You do realise that by running an android phone you’re sharing your contacts by default with Google don’t you? :fearful:

(Michael Fitzgerald) #13

Google is the best! They have complete access to everything in your account, and they USE it! They scan all of your stuff (email, documents, music, whatever you have stored in their service) and target advertising to you based on the results of those scans. They get paid by the advertisers based on the number of clicks, so they got some pretty advanced algorithms. They dropped that whole “Don’t be evil” thing years ago.

(Dan P Parker) #14

Uhm…er…about that Android phone you’re using…

(Michael Hess) #15

Many fail to realize “If I am the servant of this box, why do I have to pay for it?” is why the internet in general and most of these services are free/low cost. Also, this is why most high tech connected crap (including computers/tablets/phones) are so much cheaper than they used to be. (I don’t mean ISP fees obviously.)

That PC under your desk cost a few bucks less because MS paid to put Bing on there, Google paid a few bucks to put Chrome on there, Symantec paid a few bucks to put Norton on there…

The illusion of privacy…see through the facade, nothing is private anymore unless you use VPN and End-to-End encryption for everything, which is not reasonable or even possible for many things.

(Brad Langhorst) #16

If you just want to change your thermostat, why would you buy a home automation hub for that? Thermostats like ecobee have apps you can use to change them.

As to the rest, all I can say is sigh…

(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #17

If you are bothered by the access of your smart phone data (contacts and location) by the SmartThings App, you could choose to run SmartTiles or ActionTiles which are browser based and don’t pull any data from the phone.

(Ron Talley) #18

You Guys!!! :grinning:


Please don’t use this argument. It implies you have little, to zero, understanding of our rights and how (at least in principle) they are supposed to work.

(Michael) #20

I’d like to apologize on behalf of the SmartThings community. There’s a lot of fan-boys on here that don’t realize they’re not part of the SmartThings company, they react to posts like yours as if you attacked them personally. I don’t think they realize they’re even doing it, they just can’t separate the product they love from other things they love. They’ll come around in time, it’s a smart bunch here.

I share your disdain for the constant mining of my information. Companies pre-internet had to rely on 3rd party marketers to gather customer intelligence. Now they have direct two way communications with their customers and they maximize that advantage by taking everything they can. We all have to find our own balance in regards to our information exposure. When people like you push back that builds leverage for all of us, so thank you.

I’ve been a long time sufferer of Windows phone use. I love the interface and the deep integration I get with my company infrastructure. I’ve had to learn what I have to expose and what I can conceal. This IS the information age, we consumers treat that currency with flippant disregard of it’s value. Shame on all of us.

Mike, the Windows 10 on mobile fan-boy!