Iphone presence not working unless Smart-Things app left open all the time

Mine is working ok as long as I keep the app open on both mine and my wife’s phone. Its a hassle keeping the app launched since I routinely close running apps. I use this information to automatically arm and disarm the system. It would also be helpful if Smartthings app showed that our phones were connected and their current location (home or away from home).

I am experiencing the same issue on my iPhone 7, (geofence does not detect my presence unless I approach my location with my ST App open). However, my wife’s iPhone 12 is detected her phone’s presence with the app closed. Does anyone have any updates on the ST “identified issue with the application and background refresh which is impacting the presence functionality”?

I’m using Life360 for geofencing and everything is working 100% now (for both my phone and my wife’s phone). I doubt that I will ever go back to Smartthings’ built-in geofencing as this isn’t the first time I’ve had issues with it.

Yikes! I guess I should break the news that when groovy is shut down so will the current life360 integration which is groovy. Unless a new integration is released

I opened a case with Smartthings, provided diagnostic info and logs and they acknowledge that there is a problem with presence and iOS 15. Supposedly working on it. I’m not holding my breath.

I’m in the process of moving off of Smartthings and going purely HomeKit. All but a couple of wall switches were compatible with both so I’m not really out much for the conversion.

Yeah, HomeKit isn’t as robust as Smartthings but - it works, it’s simple and built in to iOS and Mac.

I have my new meross switches and when I get them installed this weekend it’s good bye smartthings. Enough is enough.

Kind Regards,


I’ve closed my case with Samsung. I give up. HomeKit has been rock solid for the last month while I patiently wait for Samsung to do nothing - again. Off to better things - I hope :slight_smile:

Kind Regards,


Just chiming in that I have the same issue. Ever since ios15, I have to constantly open the app to get presence to work.

Presence seems to have come back for me. Haven’t been watching it closely but my virtual sensor is showing some departures and arrivals, and I know app has been closed.

Like others I have been experiencing this brutal issue since the release of ios15. A large part of our automations are based on presence so it has essentially made SmartThings useless to us. For Samsung to allow this issue to remain for so long is unacceptable as they must know presence is a huge part of the appeal of home automation. They must know it is one of the most important functions for their users. It seems they do not care about the user experience at all.

Personally I am also currently evaluating what changes I’d need to make to our system to get swapped over to HomeKit. I’ll have to judge what makes more sense financially between swapping any remaining devices to Homekit compatible devices or moving to Hubitat.

Even with the app update presence is STILL not working…they seem to have also added back Apple Watch support but that’s not working either. :pensive:

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Just to add to what everyone as said.

Mine stopped working when I upgraded to iOS 15 on the iPhone 13 … it actually stopped at the same time on my partners iPhone XR when that was updated to IOS 15

Managed to life 360 working on my partners install (she as a separate ST account to me) bug when I tried to do the same on mine I got a message from the app saying there was an error installing the smart app …

Like many have said thou I’ve been playing for a long while with Home Assistant, which is brilliant … only thing that’s stopped me migrating is the large amount of work to move across about 40 devices

I found a solution for you…yehhhhh…

Your smarthing app is in sleep mode, take it out of sleep mode and put it to never sleep. Then open the app and then clise it and you are allll set…yes!!!
To find out how to take it out of sleep mode, search in the setting sleep.

Add me to the list of people with this issue. Basically makes my automation system useless as I use location based automations for nearly everything.

Seems to be working again in the last 24 hours without needing the app open. Using iPhone with most current ST app and iOS.

Has your SmartThings app updated in that time? I haven’t seen an update come through on my end and just curious to know if there was one that fixed it for you.

No updates…just randomly started working but it is definitely spotty. Worked for over 24 hours and then last night when we got home only one device arrived and I had to open the app to get mine to arrive. Not sure why it started to work but then fell off?

Maybe it was a fluke that you thought it was better? For the entirety of this issue (what are we at now? 2 months?) I have found it sometimes works on our phones without the app open in the background but the success rate is quite low. I now have homekit based automations set to send each of us a reminder to open ST every time we come and go. It’s really annoying but I don’t know what else to do until I fully migrate off this garbage platform.

Not a fluke…presence wasn’t working for me at all…not even sometimes. So the fact that it caught all arrivals and departures in a day is an improvement. All things considered most issues (prior to this) have been resolved quickly and the platform has been pretty reliable. Just my two cents having been an early adopter dating back to 2012.

Ah I see. I didn’t realize you went from 0% success as I never got quite that bad. I’m having about a 10% success rate I’d guess over the course of this problem. I agree they have been decent in the past about getting issues resolved however this one has been going on excessively long. I have to believe they should understand the importance of reliable presence detection to most users. In my case presence is involved in around 70% of my automations so it really is a problem for me to go on so long. There is very little use to me in using SmartThings at the moment with presence not functioning. I need to find an alternative.

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Still not working for me either. I use it to arm and disarm the system. As long as both me and my wife leave the app open then it works. The problem after any updates or reboots all apps get closed. It usually means my wifes app is closed on her phone. So if I leave and the system arms then my wife comes home and sets off the alarm. Major hassle.