SmartThings - Not Ready For The REAL World ?!

// Thats my attempt at an impacting “read me” kind of title haha //

Hello all, longtime no speak… I hope everyone has had a great holiday period and is in good health.

Ive been away from the community (but still observing the same complaints week in and week out and no progression of fixes or solutions that have been needed for years) for well over two months now, however it seems life drainingly longer . . . this is mainly because ive personally lost all faith and interest in the smartthings system as a whole . . . A tragic and unexpected change to my previous obsession with it. Ive not spent a single penny more on HA products and have disconnected 80% of my setup now due to the fact thay the wife acceptance factor was causing more arguments than solutions as things got worse and worse since V2 launch in terms of reliability and stability etc.

However my parents are renovating a new home and have a large budget to make it a smart home, so over the christmas holidays we spoke about it loads and i kind of got my spark back and wanted to get back on the ball with all my original excitement . . .

Howeverrrrrrrr - that soon changed back !!!

After looking deep into the forums on the best solutions, i have researched and tried to perfect the best plan of attack for my parents install and every single aspect of this now has issues that arent resolved or in a worse state than they were years ago . . . In short is the below list of basics, there is tons more but id hate to bring up the same subjects over and over again that other users are in threads above and below this one . . .

Im now left wondering - do i just tell them to save their money and stress or invest in something else or post this and hope someone can regain my faith.

Issue 1.) Lighting.

A subject @JDRoberts has frequently pointed out the solutions to for many users on here, the home my parents are renovating is been rewired as we speak and neautral wires are cabled into every switch in the home for the sole reason of smart technology been added - after showing my mum the options she wanted to use MCO HOME TOUCH PANELS: 1/2/4 gang options . . . As she liked the nice glass uk styling and led lights over fibaro modules and standard switches etc etc . . . Howeverrrrrrr this is an issue as SmartThings has not in the 2 years its been an issue managed to solve the multichannelbassosciation issues to run these types of products correctly /// so thats strike 1 !!!

Issue 2.) CCTV.

My mum wants to have external and internal ptz cctv than can be viewied alongside all her smarthome stufff yet also downloaded should an issue arrise to show the police or keep on record and backed up when needed - as we all know - not possible with ST and when mentioned the goal posts seem very distant - strike 2 !!!

Issue 3.) Nest Integration

After reading the forums, its very apparent that Nest and Smartthings are having issues making an offcial partnership and any 3rd party attempts are been trumped by one or the other causing frequent issues for both the protect and thermostat - strike 3 !!!

Issue 4.) Harmony

Tv and IR control as we know is easiest done with harmony, however as a whole, its stability from lasts about 1 month before any update on either side destroys it for 3 months and has frequent problems - strike 4 !!!

As you can see all the above are the very very basics my family require for there smart home (as im sire many other homes also require) and these arnt even correctly perfected yet ?!?!?

My mum doesnt have the knowledge or experience with the platform i do to be fixing ST every week or the understanding as to why the system sends issue emails out every month for downtime etc, which has made it very very obvious to me that SmartThings ISNT a consumer product yet nor anywhere near, its for us geeks and hackers to play with, but not the everyday family who needs a realiable smart home system. Which means in my eyes it shouldnt really be available in chain stores as its very deceiving as other forum posts have outlined.

Im leaving this all here in the hope that anyone/everyone and mainly ST can prove me otherwise on the above and get me back on track, get my mojo and excitement running again . . .

but as it stands i feel like ive gone from one of the most motivated and passionate ST followers and users of this community to the exact opposite in the space of 2 frustrating months . . .

Is there any sign of a reliable and posative future for SmartThings, one single hope that i can grasp onto before i have to turn to my parents and say that i dont really have the faith and belief in the system ive boasted about in my home to them and my friends for years, to sufficiently run there home or justify thousands of pounds of their investment?

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Oh - presence and SHM were other important bits but that is obvious to everyone

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I wouldn’t. Now, I don’t mind tinkering with my setup and dealing with some of the hiccups that seem to occur almost daily but I definitely don’t want to become someone else’s HA support person, even for my parents. I’m already tech support for many computer issues, so I don’t need to pile on anything else on top of that. That is one reason I often recommend products that require very little tech support.


Don’t quote me, but I believe that @jody.albritton has set up SmartThings for his parents, with particularly successful and stable results…

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You don’t have to integrate all the systems above with Smartthings. I have similar setup for my parents and ST is just mainly for lights.

But it cant even do that // MCO HOME SWITCHES - the only real all in one plug and play uk style zeave switch - but smartthings doesnt support 2 or 4 gang ones as it doesnt support multichannel association STILLLLLLLL ehich every other competitior can do . . .

As for eanting everything to integrate and been able to do it with all these products but not integrated ---- thats the whole point ---- a smart home needs to talk to everything !!!

Off to look at a Fibaro run home near me next week to see how they get on and get some honest feedback from that person - as that seems like i very stable solution even if its not as open.

I am 2 days old with Smartthings and so it is disappointing to see such a view.

I am immediately impressed with being able to do simple automation.

Zwave/zig bee home automation is still a very immature market so I am sure suppliers must see the massive market potential and be launching many more product options over the coming months. Especially zwave enabled electrical sockets, zwave enabled switch plates of all sorts. I suspect that those electrical manufacturers that don’t will surely die. (E.g. Light wave RF)

SmartThings seems the platform of choice because it is open. If suppliers just peddle proprietary corruptions of the technology and insist on stupidly trying to lockout alternative suppliers they will kill this whole market stone dead. Imagine how many home networks we wouldn’t have if we could only choose between Apple Ethernet, or Microsoft Ethernet, or Samsung Ethernet.

The Harmony integration is simply not reliable. It’s broken twice now and I did pose the question to @thegilbertchan on why this keeps happening. (Is it a flawed QA process on the ST side or is the lack of communication between Logitech and ST?).

I think it’s reasonable at this point to never expect the Nest integration. Dozens of smaller companies have managed to be part of the “Works with Nest” program. Luckily for me, my alarm provider, SimpliSafe joined the program last week and now I can do some of my automation outside of ST.

For lighting and v2 with the Smart Lighting app, which runs local, I would imagine this would be a stronger play for ST. I am still on V1 with no intentions of migrating any time soon until I see a proper migration tool and more stability and reliability.

Overall, my particular setup as been extremely reliable in ST the last few months. I consider myself one of the lucky ones. I have a ton of automation (including a lot of unsupported devices such as from MyQ, Nest, SimpliSafe, Somfy), Hue, Harmony, Sonos, Echo and a handful of zWave and zigbee switches/motion, etc. Currently, there is only one integration that has not happened yet that I would like to see and that is with Rachio which is a work in progress according to their CTO @franzgarsombke. Mobile Presence continues to be a thorn as my wife’s iPhone never worked right so I have a presence sensor in her car which works well.


My Harmony Integration has work flawlessly for the past couple months.

Just a reminder to all reading here and elsewhere, forum user complaints are not necessarily reflective of the entire SmartThings user base.


I have been very happy with my SmartThings set-up for general automation, alerts, etc. Have there been a few hiccups, yes, but not anywhere near where I would consider it unreliable or unstable. Again MY opinion, everyone’s opinion as to what is considered reliable is different based on their use case and patience.

Based on my positive experience I bought my parents SmartThings, a few sensors and switches for their new home. It has only been a couple months but so far they are very pleased :grinning: Same result with a few friends that purchased ST based on seeing it in my home.

For me the pros of having SmartThings in my home has certainly outweighed the cons.
Sorry your experience has been otherwise.


Actually it’s been very reliable for me also. However, problems have plagued the system when adding NEW hubs. I should have clarified that but the OP would encounter these issues if they were setting up a new hub today.

Wait two weeks until CES 2016. Many companies will introduce many exciting new concept devices, some of which will never make it to market, but some of which will be available by the summer. It will certainly be enough to get you excited about the possibilities again. Just remember to bring your bag of salt. :wink:


ST does support dual relay. Not officially of course. As for MCO switches. They are nice looking for sure. I was looking into MCO and Livolo before and the only reason I don’t have them with my house is that they are not certified for North America. It could be different with U.K of course. You should check with Fibaro to be sure they support these switches last thing you want is pulling your hair for a custom device type.
Totally agree with you about HA and everything should be integrated but we should be also understand that it’s not there yet. Couple of years from now maybe. Hope you find a solution and I love to hear your result. I could follow your solution with my parent’s house as well.

Don’t want to sidetrack this post but V2 and local run is kind of murky. When you loose internet connection. Smart light apps will still run with V2. V2 hub smart light apps will not run with internet connection but ST schedule issue. I experienced this at least 4 times since I got my V2. I asked ST a couple of times about this but never got an answer. So I don’t see much benefit so far with v2 other than a different Zigbee channel which stop dropping out my GE link bulbs but for $100 bucks. It’s hard to beat.

ST is still no more reliable for lighting than X-10, at around 5X the cost, and no Neutral needed. Bottom line: unless Mum is a hobbyist or a person who is very tolerant of flaws in gadgets, good old-fashioned light switches with professionally-installed hard-wired dimmers and relays are probably still the right solution.

For anything involving alarm systems, safety, or climate control, professional point solutions will be far more reliable and less annoying, and not much more costly. The DIY-level stuff, like ST, is still toys, IMHO. ST is definitely not yet ready for the big leagues.

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i can clear up now everything i said in my original post isnt JUST ME experiencing it, its system wide . . .

It remains factual that the following have major issues and SmartThings as a whole have let down users to fix and stabalize the basics of there system and are more focused on releasing subscription services . . . If this isnt the case then why are the forum complaints and issues the same now as they were 6months ago and 12months ago . . . With no resolution or timescale to having one.

  • Presence = Flakey at best (for majority of users)
  • Harmony = was fixed then became flakey as hell
  • multichannel association = stillllll non existent
  • nest integration = has been given up on !!!
  • SHM = very unreliable at best, started off hassle free and amazing though.
  • CCTV = cant download your own footage if required for the authorities (which makes it pointless)
  • overall system reliability has had more issues raised and status alerts in the last 6 months than the previous 18months put together

And every time i come back on the forum (which pre V2 launch was the best community forum about . . . You now just see the same simple basic features been complained about and are still not fixed 12 months later . . .

Many of the power users of past have now left or backed off because they have been alienated by ST . . .

Developer calls are very sparse now as the real developers have lost patience and to make it worse SmartThings as an entitiy has limited there own presence in the community and now only get involved if they really have to as a pose to the past when they were inspiring development and passionatly involved in discussing the product and its development and future, that was the good old days . . .

Ps: @Spinny - dont expect to much on new products in a few months, we’ve been hoping for this for 24 months let alone 24 days :wink:

SmartThings will fly into the history books and plant there foot firmly as the HA market leader when they take real notice of the community developers, fix basic system reliability and required features to open up there rosta of integratable devices (new attributes / multichannel association / use of the other radio options) but as it stands it seems to me like they are on a mission to grow profits quick not to create a great reliable system . . . Which is backed up by how there so quiet now and never ever ever give anything a timescale be its a fix / solution / integration / release / products - its shows a real lack in self confidence . . . And i cant put confidence in something that doesnt have confidence on itself.

i will probably get a PM from a director again for this post and speaking my mind and pointing stuff out in such a manor so public (but if id of done this private id never of had a reply like the rest of my messages from 6-9months ago) after the experience ive had and seen others have im not to fussed if i get a bollocking, id rather get a stern word in my ear privatley but in return get the message across to the people who matter, that its time to pick up the game and communicate better with the community on our priority of needs / solutions / integrations and your current road map for fixes / integrations and solutions.



Did you actually get chastised by – whom??? – for writing something in this forum? I’ve written 1000s of posts and not experienced that. Well… I did get a stern response related to a Support rating, but that’s somewhat different.

I’m definitely not holding this against SmartThings; there’s plenty stuff SmartThings is doing wrong, but failure to integrate Nest is out of their hands – write a strongly worded letter to Google if you want to fix that.

Though, much more easily, use the Community developed device type for Nest; I think it works, I dunno – I rather refuse to support Nest due to their lack of cooperation with SmartThings, actually.


Majorly - and when i explained myself back privaetly i was ignored (for over 8 months and growing) i dont want to aay who as its not a mission to slate smartthings i just want them to buck there ideas up

As for neat thats my least important point above as i know the situation but the rest stilll stabd as do many others that should of been rectified years ago as you know :slight_smile:

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Is it really Nest’s lack of cooperation or the other way around?

It’s neither or both depending on how you look at it.

Nest requires that official "works with nest "partners limit some of the features that can be controlled as a security step. A good example is the nest IFTTT channel. Look at it carefully, and you’ll see that several features can only be implemented when the nest presence detection is set to home. This prevents a remote hacker from making some changes to the thermostat when no one is home. But it also prevents the homeowner from making some changes through IFTTT when they are away from the location.

The SmartThings architecture is so open that at the present time it would not respect those limits.

So SmartThings would have to limit nest control to an official device type which respected the feature limitations required of the “works with nest” partnership. Which doesn’t fit the SmartThings model.

Neither side is being arbitrary. They just have a different design philosophy. And the two happen to be incompatible.

If the television version of SmartThings is limited to official device types, I think it could quite easily become an approved nest partner. But again, I haven’t seen any official confirmation one way or the other in that regard.