Smartrules vs Rule machine

Is there an advantage of one over the other. I have a ton of rules in Rule Machine but have not played with Samrtrules yet and want to hear some peoples experience with SmartRules


I’m still sorting it all out, especially the part where I kill old routines/SmartLighting apps, but after a couple weeks of using it, the Wife Acceptance Factor for my HA setup has gone way up.

I can’t compare it to Rule Machine except to say that RM is free & runs on your hub entirely as a smart app & SR has its own smart app and costs I think $6.99.

The single biggest issue I have is on Brice’s fix list for the next version, and it’s one he says is “easy”: in Notifications, you don’t get a mention of WHICH SmartRule caused something to occur, just that SmartRules did something. So if you have a lot of rules (and you will, ultimately) troubleshooting your logic can be really challenging.

Brice at @ObyCode is super responsive to your questions and has been very enthusiastic about my input. If not for SmartRules and ObyThing Music, I’m pretty sure I would have bit the bullet and switched over to Indigo with their ST bridge.

1 Like

Rule machine doesn’t run on the hub entirely yet. If only it did have local processing. Unfortunately, it still relies on ST’s cloud implementation.

Unless you meant something else by that.

1 Like

I love the power of Rule Machine and currently open source so the Community can experiment with tweaking the actual SmartApp code. Being 100% native is fun for geeks :eyeglasses:.

But I would consider SmartRules to be considerably easier to use because it has a GUI for building the rules (which then run natively in SmartThings’s cloud – so that part will be, as far as I am aware, equally eligible for local processing, … when ST finally starts publishing for local – technically, SmartRules is a reviewed, approved, published SmartApp back-end, so it has a head start). Unfortunately it is iOS only, so it is not my personal #1 choice. Great job by @obycode, though, and the reasonable charge is quite worth it.

Just because you can get a semi-truck for free, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy the cute … Prius?


I have been using SmartRules since it was released last year and I’ve found it to be mostly useful but sometimes unreliable. For iOS at least I really like the notification page buttons you can create, but I don’t like the fact that they don’t often times work the first time you press them. I think this is an iOS issue overall, but it’s still somewhat annoying.

Sadly because ST in general has seen significant reliability issues with their backend lately, I’m using both Rules Machine and SmartRules together with some overlap to try and recover when for whatever reason a rule in either fails to trigger or activate.

1 Like

I have been using SmartRules for the past month and it works perfectly for me. The main advantage of SmartRule is that the user interface on IOS is very fast and super easy to use. I tried RuleMachine but gave up on it not because I had any issues with it but because it uses the SmartThings mobile app for its user interface. That smart things mobile app is so slooooow and it would take me minutes to slog through all of the various rule panels just to write a single rule. So I decided to try out SmartRules and have not looked back since.


One thing SmartRules provides is a local watch2 OS app for Apple Watch while the native Smartthings Apple Watch app is still running via Bluetooth watchOS 1. It’s not as good looking as ST’s app, but is much quicker. It was also helpful using the widgets on the Today screen while ST had the logging out bug, but that problem has gone away, so I’ve went back to using ST for my widgets.


thank you for the information. this is exactly what I was looking for

1 Like

SmartRules also allows Ibeacons to be incorporated into rules quite easily (there’s a separate $2 IBeacon add on for SmartRules called BeaconThings).

You can use Ibeacons with SmartThings without using SmartRules, but I don’t think they can trigger rule machine unless you set up a virtual switch as a gobetween.

I believe rule machine allows for a deeper logical complexity for each rule while Smartrules has a more graphical interface. I can certainly seeing someone using both. :sunglasses:

1 Like

Ok I just bought the app where is this Ibeacon option?

Beacons as triggers are part of the standard $7 SmartRules app.

As I mentioned above, If you don’t have a beacon manager, you’ll also need the $2 add on app, BeaconThings, to register your beacons as a “device” to SmartThings.

@obycode can say more.

What brand of beacons are you using?

1 Like

can’t go wrong with either. thanks oby and bruce.


Just to pile on a bit… I bought Smartrules and I love the simple interface. However, I have the need for a few more complex rules that it can’t handle with (x or y) and z sort of things and that is where Rule machine works great. I used the first release and it was great. I just updated Rule machine to the latest version and look forward to the new experience. Bottom line is I would suggest you get both. Small fee for Smartrules is worth it and the price is right (free) for Rule machine – just remember to pay it forward as @bravenel asks and share what you learn or offer any advice to others as you gain experience.


Looks like smartrules is a iOS app not a smart app?

SmartRules a SmartApp with the “rule builder” being a GUI that only runs on iOS. Makes it easy to use … and a simple way to charge the reasonable price; and a secure way to store the login credentials, etc…

One of these days someone might develop some sort of graphic-front-end UI for Rule Machine too.

1 Like

Technically, it’s both. In the iOS app you define and edit your rules, then they’re sent to a SmartApp where they actually run, just like any other SmartApp.

1 Like

Before RM, when I first saw this I was Excited, only to moments later find out it’s ios only =(

But now I have RM and all is good. I would probably buy the app just out of curiosity if android support was added.



I love Smartrules, it’s easy to use and it is an approved app. I have been caught in the past with neat unapproved apps that don’t work as things change.

That being said I have only one request, a plus and minus time offset for sunrise and sunset that would make the app perfect for me.

Thanks for the Great App!!!

1 Like

i have been using SmartRules for a while now and have found a few limitations. For example, you can’t turn light off after a designated period and have a new event tell the prior event to ignore the turn off - so lights will go off when you are still in the room. I normally use the built in smartlight app for this reason but the more complex logic for SmartRules makes it tempting to use for lighting apps. This turn off limitation makes it not very good for this application however. So the top of my wish list is an option to turn off after a period of time built into a rule so that new positive logic will cancel the turn off logic set within the same rule instance. Hope that made sense. At present my work around is to set turn off based on motion in adjacent rooms but that only works when one person is home.

1 Like