I want to know the difference between the ST v3 hub and the ST wifi


i am wanting to setup a mesh network with an existing ST hub…

for a mesh setup which unit do i need to buy … hub v3 or wi fi hub


Existing hubs dont ‘join’ other hubs to create meshes of any kind. The ST Wifi solution is the closest thing to what you describe as joining a mesh. That said, I have my own opinions on why I wouldn’t pick a combined Wifi and IoT hub…

So may I ask, why? What are you trying to accomplish?

The V3 hub joins Your Wi-Fi network so it can reach the Internet, just like all the other Wi-Fi devices in your home do. Then it establishes its own completely separate networks for zigbee and zwave, which you can use to communicate with Zigbee and zwave devices in your home, If you have any. It will use the Internet to talk to the smartthings cloud, which it uses for account functions and communication with other cloud-based devices.

Normally the smartthings Wi-Fi hub With plume is used instead of any other Wi-Fi router. It connects to the Internet on its own and still has the Z wave and Zigbee radios inside. It is possible to turn off the Wi-Fi router function and use it in “bridge mode“ so it can connect by cable to the Ethernet network (in this configuration it doesn’t matter whether the other router creates a Wi-Fi mesh network or not). So essentially “bridge mode“ lets the smartthings Wi-Fi mesh hub work just like the V2 hub.

(However, as @daileyo noted below, it looks like in bridge mode the Wi-Fi mesh hub cannot connect to another Wi-Fi network. That’s not what support originally told me and I haven’t had it confirmed officially, but I believe it could be true. My apologies for any confusion caused by my original version of this post.)

This question has been coming up a lot This month because Samsung is getting out of the IOT hardware business and shifting production over to partners, which means that right now inventory of the V3 hubs is very hard to find in many countries. But many retailers, including Amazon, still have some stocks of the smartthings Wi-Fi mesh models, so people have been asking if they can use one of those instead of the V3. They already have a Wi-Fi router that they like, they are just looking for a substitute for the V3 hub.

So the answer to that question is yes, you can do that, but you do have to set the smartthings hub to bridge mode. And it looks like you will have to connect it by ethernet, not Wi-Fi.

The other big difference, and I do think it’s important, is that the firmware for the Wi-Fi mesh models has not been updated as often as the regular hub models. There are multiple reasons for that, but it has tended to lag behind in new features. So that would be a reason to not buy a Wi-Fi mesh model if you didn’t want that device as a Wi-Fi mesh Router.

On the other hand, if the “mesh“ you are talking about is Zigbee or Z wave, Then you can forget everything I just said. A model V1, V2, or V3 smartthings hub will not form a zigbee or Z wave mesh with any other hub. They just aren’t designed for that. The Wi-Fi models can do it with “sub hubs“ of the same model line, which I know is confusing because we are talking about two different mesh protocols, but they were designed for that. But you can’t mix those with the regular hub models.


Thanks for the post. I always like finding such well written responses. However, I am not sure it is completely accurate, at least not the way I am understanding it.

My experience, so far, has been that bridge mode cannot be used to connect the SmartThings Wifi hub via an existing wifi network. It will work to allow one to connect it to an existing router via the physical ethernet cable. But so far, I’ve had no luck with finding a way to make it connect to a an existing wifi network wirelessly.

In my case, auto-mode is enabled by default, and behaves as follows:

  • automatically select bridge mode if physically connected to a router
  • automatically select router mode when connected to a modem directly
  • does nothing if it isn’t physically connected
  • does not have any area to enter existing wifi connection information for use to connect to existing wifi network

The device will never finish setup, or be available to connect to unless it is physically connected to either a modem or existing network. In both cases, it is not accessible wirelessly until it first successfully connects to the internet.

Unless there is some additional piece that I’m missing (which is very possible) I think the on-board bridge mode can only be used to allow the SmartThings Wifi device to run as a a primary or secondary wifi access point that is physically connected to an existing network. I would say that it cannot be used as an alternative to a SmartThings v3 device’s wireless network connection functionality.

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Good point. It may well be that it can only work in bridge mode when hardwired to the router. I will correct my post above.

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Aeotec wants 120 for the v3 hub, same price as the ST WiFi (which is actually 110 on discount) But samsung will still sell you a 3 pack of the ST WiFi for only $279 (250 on discount)

To get the discounted price use Samsung’s EDU or employer discounts.

Based on the pricing, the only reason to not buy the st WiFi are the firmware updates.

That’s a huge reason to not buy it.

True, it’s currently not supporting local automations either