I recently switched over to SmartThings from Nexia, largely because of the promised local processing w/o an internet connection. One of the big downsides of Nexia was that any remote control suffered an unacceptable level of latency since I had to communicate with my hub via the cloud, bouncing commands around the internet just to talk to devices in the next room. Even worse, if I lost my internet connection, my “smart house” became a “dumb house”, with no automations working and no ability to control anything remotely.
However, my experimentation with my STv2 hub shows that with no internet connection, I can’t communicate with my hub via my phone at all, and just like Nexia, none of my automations are running.
Have I configured something incorrectly? Or have I misunderstood what the v2 hub can do?
Correction: I just confirmed that at least one of my SmartLighting automations is running locally. When I tried this about a week ago I got different results. Perhaps my test was flawed or something changed at the hub level.
I’m still interested in finding out what capabilities there are to communicate with the hub and connected devices via the mobile app. I assume/hope that it is able to talk to the hub via the LAN and would work without an Internet connection.
Nope. It’s a cloud-based architecture still. If your Internet connection is down, The smartthings mobile app cannot talk to your hub even if they are both on your same LAN and that is still up.
This is in sharp contrast to, say, Staples connect, where the tablet control app can connect locally.
If your cloud connection is down, the only things that run are things that are already in the firmware of your hub. And right now that’s not much.
Smartthings has already suggested that you preprogram a button controller device like the Aeon Minimote to be able to change modes manually if you lose cloud connection since your phone app will not work.
I am quadriparetic with limited hand control, so this is actually a big issue for me, as I cannot physically use a minimote. Not having tablet access is a big deal for me. But as of now, we don’t have it. They’re working their way backwards from cloud architecture.
You might want to talk to @pstuart He knows a great deal about how a server can and cannot interact with the ST hub Beyond the official position.
But if you’re thinking that the smart things hub, either generation, is the home automation server like Homeseer that you can get access to and and run your own programs on locally, it’s just not. It operates pretty much like a web service. No TCP. No UDP except the stuff that Patrick has been able to get working. No way, for example, to interface with a Lutron bridge even though that has an open local API.
But again, some of the other deep coders can answer your questions much better.
There must be some reason that I’m unaware of why this is difficult. As long as my mobile device can establish a TCP/IP connection to the hub, it seems like the app should be able to provide local control. I can potentially see the app needing to connect via the cloud for app configuration, but even that could be stored/cached locally, even if the app itself lives in the cloud.
It’s not the hardware, it’s the software architecture of the entire design. The account information is in the cloud. We have no UDP connection to the hub, we have no local TCP/Ip connection, they authenticate everything in the cloud.
Search the developer category, you’ll see at least half a dozen integrations waiting on some kind of LAN communication, from Lutron to MiLight. These are companies that have open APIs to their bridges. But require LAN connection.
Absolutely, technically, a connection could be made. It’s the account side architecture that holds it up. So maybe someday, but not now.