Galaxy Phone Users: SmartThings needs your Feedback

Hello SmartThings Users.

We’d love to get your feedback on the new UI designs and how you tend to use SmartThings. We are looking for Galaxy Phone owners to complete a quick survey. You must have a galaxy phone and the latest version of SmartThings to qualify. Please help us out by clicking the following link to the survey.



Director of User Experience


I ran into an issue with the survey, where asked to select which bluetooth devices are used with the ST app. The question asked to select those applicable, but only one selection was allowed.

Using Firefox with Windows 10.

The questionaire is a good start

There were a couple of questions like that.

Also the whole survey seemed to be begging the question: I pretty much never use the app for day to day access and control; I have never, ever used the Devices Panel and don’t see the point of it; and my Bluetooth devices never need to be controlled once paired.


I figured I’d wait on a fix. But other than experimenting with the Bluetooth and TV controls it’s not something I can see myself using often, unless it were possible to connect directly to the hub. But, I could be shortsighted…

My questionnaire cut off early too.

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Absolutely agree Graham, I think they were trying to find out if it is worth adding BT devices into ST

Luckily there were questions about ‘favorites’ page, I hope my points came across about the horrendous naming of an opening page in a HOME automation app
HOME, HOME, HOME, add favorites as an option along with other options but not just "Favorites’ that is just terrible design

Or favorites is fine for 4 to 6 items that need control or monitoring in a small under 10 device setup

Some of us have a whole lot more which is encouraged by ST by virtue of either c2c integration, direct device connection (zigbee zwave) or v switches into Amazon’s servers, not to mention temperature monitoring and many other devices that need to be monitored quickly and easily

Throw 17 rooms (areas/groups) with 2 or 3 ‘favorites’ per room into the mix that need easy access and the current UI throws out a list of 34 items to scroll through

Not too mention the huge wasted space on screen, weather in a tile and a link to a Web page with ads???

No link to automations per device is also a massive omission


Plus one, on the Automations indexing. It needs to happen.

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Haven’t they already done so in the form of Personal Devices?

I think the idea of a Mobile Connected Device has some merit. My phone knows just enough about my headphones (connected, volume, battery) for that to make it a useful ST device, for example. I don’t want to know about them in the app otherwise. I have now sidetracked myself pondering why the phone battery state can’t be seen in ST, let alone the connected Wi-Fi.

The Favourites tab seems to be the only one that is actually potentially useful on the phone. Devices, Life and Automations would be better served via a web browser.

The information can certainly be valuable though I have no particular wish for it in the app. One of the benefits of mainly using Rules is that it is easy enough to generate. I just use a web page to give me an overview of all my devices in one go.

The lack of access to automations per device leaves systems in a mess, especially now with the poor naming scheme in current use, even if you name your automation well, it can’t be read in an easy manner as they are cut off

There is so much wrong with the UI it needs a complete re design, Samsung have the coders but coders are not designers


Sadly, the survey worked like the app, poorly. It said I was done after 5 questions. Maybe because I use no Bluetooth devices with the app? If that’s the case, should have been question #1.

The absolute best resource for improving the current UI is refering back to Smartthings classic

OneUI has to be adhered too but Classics layout, options and flow can be extracted and used for inspiration

We look back to it with fondness because it worked as a front end that was logical and useful, yes it needed a freshen up and I still believe if the current OneUI was applied to classic, not ST OneUi but the ethos with artistic license then a more agreable app could be created, it would be seen as a modernisation of classic

Alternatively if you stick to the Windows Phone version of ST which it looks like ST is currently following, then more attention to detail is needed, spacing, flow, logicality in use, WP had some nice touches but even that had its downsides including truncating titles, swipe is very risky on an Android, scroll is Android and Apple, swipe was more WP where it was fully accepted

I could write a whole essay as could others on what needs improving and I have no doubt that behind the scenes there at ST there have been people screaming things are not right, surely since this latest debarcle it is now time to put things right and finaly stabilise the experience


I think they must have updated this, I started it, selected ‘no bluetooth devices’ clicked next and it ended. Not a single question on the new UI.

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I think Classic is looked back on fondly because the ‘new’ app was being promoted for use as the preferred app for about a year or so before it actually had any useful functionality. I was fortunate in that the new app wasn’t available for my phone as if it was I’d never have used SmartThings at all. Therefore the Classic app had the advantage of being usable. That is the only advantage it had though. Otherwise it had a bizarre user interface littered with relics of long since forgotten functionality. It really wasn’t a very good app, and its mobile presence was unreliable too, disappearing for weeks at a time just because it could. The current Favourites tab pretty much is the Classic app dashboard page so it can’t have been all that good.

It does sound like the iOS app is closer to a steaming pile of doggy doo than a usable app at the moment, but the the Android app is by far the best it has ever been. It has obvious flaws:

  • The Favourites tab would be better with the sort of section dividers used on the Automation tab to give it structure. It needs the visual cues that empty space and section headings offer. The section headings do need to be relatively subtle though. On the previous UI they consumed too much space and were a distraction.
  • Although the Automation tab demonstrates sensible collapsible sections in a proportionate size that would be really useful on the Favourites page, it is a curious choice for the UI to use a single page for three sections, two of which can individually be about a mile and a half long when expanded for some users. The Devices tab is already using sideways scrolling pages to switch between Rooms (I do wish they’d cycle round), so wouldn’t the Automations make more sense with the same style UI to switch between Scenes, Automations and SmartApps? There also needs to be a way to organise the Scenes and Automations as these would still be be massive pages. I do not recommend chopping the Scene tiles in half so it is impossible to differentiate between their names as an approach going forward.
  • The Menu and Settings pages remain a jumbled mess. Why is Linked Services on the app Settings page? It clearly isn’t an app setting. It could perhaps be squeezed on to a better named Automations tab (no I can’t suggest a better name but it isn’t Automations) but if these services are about device integrations they should really be accessed via the Devices tab, after all that is where the resulting devices are displayed.
  • Please sort out terminology. In the latest documentation Automations, Rules and Scenes fall under the category of Automations which is an unfortunate duplicate use of a term. There has to be a way of knowing the difference between Automations (the category), Automations (the specific implementation), and automations (as a generic term). Apps fall under Connected Services but in the app they are in the Automations tab, and in the app Connected Services is an old term for Linked Services that hasn’t been changed everywhere. Not that Linked Services is a term known to the documentation.

My referencing classic Graham was more aimed at the look and flow, the ergonomics of button pushing and the use of colour to indicate States, all my references are aimed at design and the impact to the eye and brain

There are countless ways to do anything but only a handful of ways to do something right and sustainable, the complete change between the two apps was not necessary, there should have been a progression and modernisation to the Samsung UI, it was possible to accomplish, unfortunately, the baby got thrown out with the bath water, when all that was needed was new water

Can the app become something agreeable to all people, absolutely yes but some constraints would have to removed or people placated, if that is the problem

Don’t suppose anyone has thought to ask Mr Ive for a quote

It’s the automation/scene sorting, or more precisely the lack of grouping which is standing out to me. I’m thinking user defined groups for automations would do wonders for the clutter.

I think we need a New UI feedback thread

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I think they get the jist, the forum is monitored officially or not

NDAs probably stop a lot of input unfortunately

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On off circular button shape

When using the button for a group the on off circular shape changes colour to indicate state

Individual devices elsewhere in the app have the same button but apart from small icon change and small text change the state is not indicated by a colour change on the circle ?

Colour change is instantly recognisable as a state change, small icons that have no relevant shape to the device they control are not

An on off button has some strange looking slider that goes up down, at least here in the UK that icon has absolutely no relevance

Static icons of the device more relevant to the item should be used and its state indicated by colour not icon position, would probably help in load times as well

Minor things but important for a consistent fast loading Ui

That one has baffled me too. If the vertical line stopped in the middle it would be a bit like a circuit breaker but as it is the only thing I can relate it to is an upside down toaster slot.

I am also bemused by the choice of icons for Bluetooth devices. A headset and headphones get what I assume is a generic icon which is harmless, but scales and a thermometer get an earpiece style headset icon which is confusing.

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