The dimmer controls on 2.0 are an abomination

Did you guys try and use these? They are terrible on my phone and close to unusable on my 7" tablet.

  • They are so small that I cannot dial in a good level.
  • There is no indication of the actual level. Am I at 5% or 3%?
  • the control is so small that I can’t even tell when I have selected it. Half the time I engage it I end up swiping the screen away.
  • when I use it, I end up trying 3-5 times to get it to do what I want. I am seriously considering creating a smart app to dial in pre-selected levels.

It’s borderline unusable. I started a new topic because I would really like the ST guys to see if others hate this as much as me.

I am disappointed with the failure of the new app to be more convenient, but this actually reduces the usability of the system. I showed the controls to my wife who is NOT a power user and she thinks it’s ridiculous. I have to agree.

USABILITY; Please think about it. If I was selling this system to people this would be an embarrassment.


The dimmer control actually varies by Device Type.

GE Link bulbs (connected via Hue Bridge), for example, still use the Horizontal Slider control… Better than the weird new dial, but not perfect.

I gave up on the useless new color control.

So, totally agree with you, bud. The quality of many, many elements of the V2 mobile UI, is incredibly horrendous. Not meaning to insult the effort spent, and there’s obviously some improvements and creative ideas… But why mince words? Horrible is horrible.

SmartThings invited folks to preview and feedback the new App. I can only presume they chose blind participants (oh… Is the new App accessible?), or the feedback was ignored or deferred.


The controls work better on iOS, but they still slide the page away and I have no idea what the setting is.

Example of it on Android 5.1:


I just don’t get it. They went from one convoluted organization to another. The controls got worse.

It seemed to me the things they needed to make the app useful were: custom shortcuts on the Main page, better scene controls (“Hello home” never made any sense to me) and for Android, individual widgets or a large widget with custom buttons.

We got a widget for the hello home actions, which is a good thing, but I still have to navigate 3-4 menus to get to a desired switch.

Laymen won’t want to use this. I don’t want to use this, and I’ve written custom smart apps. I don’t get it.


The dimmer controls in the hero view drive me a bit crazy too. :smile:

Regarding the concern about widgets, I developed an app called SharpTools which adds widgets for SmartThings on Android. These allow you to quickly control your Things, run Routines (Phrases), and change Modes. SharpTools also provides Tasker integration for those that like to tinker and it enables you to create some really cool integrations including custom widgets.


Thank you Joshua! I actually had already installed that on one of my devices but forgot about it before using it.

Very nice; however I can’t get it to set my dimmers from a widget. I will keep playing, maybe I am doing something wrong.

I don’t want to hijack your original thread, but using the dimming feature with certain devices does require one trick.

When you create an ‘A Thing’ widget, select your dimmable device and select the setLevel command. Most devices will ask for two parameters, but you may need to delete the second parameter:

Parameter 1: Dimming Level (eg. 0-100)
Parameter 2: Duration to Dim Over (eg. 3 = 3 seconds)*

Many devices will ask for the second parameter even though they don’t actually accept it. You can delete the parameter by opening the menu (three dots) and checking the box for ‘Override Parameters’. Once that’s enabled, an ‘X’ will show up next to the parameters allowing you to delete one of the them.

Example dimming to 50% on a GE Link bulb:

Yeah… inexplicable that somebody used this and said… “Yup, that’s good! Let’s go with that.”

Really makes you wonder doesn’t it? And then you have the list views where the values/states are one third the size of the labels. I guess we made too much noise about not having labels without shaking. We got labels now… I just have trouble seeing the values.


Josh: Worked. Thank you!

Hey ST! How about some functionality like this?!

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I mean, if you walk into your house and want to control things, don’t you just want to open up the app and have some buttons ready to go? The main page of the app has no usability!

Shortcuts should be the first page, there should be less wasted space. There should be a way to set the dimmers with a slider from there.

A good secondary page is an “Overview” page. Because if you just want to see what’s happening, clicking into another subscreen isn’t such a terrible thing. When you want to turn a damn light on, you want to do it NOW.


Sorry for the bitching, ST. I love the functionality of the system; I have Alexa on it, I have 40 “Things” and plan for more. But the App has got to improve.

Josh’s SharpTools is a much better app than yours for turning lights on and off. That shouldn’t be the case! (Thanks Josh!)


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Looks like how they implement ALL dimmable devices in the Wink App as well and it is pretty hateful especially when the app hangs a few seconds after you open it. Can be very tedious for devices that while they act like a dimmer, only have three actual positions like the GE 12730 fan control where:

0% = Off
1-33% = Low
34-66% = Medium
67-100% = High

Sometimes trying to ‘land’ it in one of those spots can be a bit difficult. Not sure how this translates to the new ST App though.

It’s confusing at first, but its not really a slider because the act of sliding will move the screen. Instead just tap the level you want it at. It’s actually really nice because it doesn’t go through every level to get where you want it.

As for your comment amount the exact level - no way to set that in the app that I have found. However, is that really important? I mean it’s not like 3% == awful, and 5% == sexytime.

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From an accessability standpoint, none of the icons appear to have been coded as buttons. However on a none dimmer screen I am given the option of an on and off tile so I can use those.

If the device is defined as a dimmer, I have zero control over it. It’s not just that I can’t change the dim level, I can’t turn it on or off at all. :scream:

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Hi David,

What I have found from trying to tap is that it’s too small to be controlled well. If I try and click on part of the arc, there’s a good chance that I will toggle the light rather then change the dimmer.

As for your comment amount the exact level - no way to set that in the app that I have found. However, is that really important? I mean it’s not like 3% == awful, and 5% == sexytime.

Actually, YES IT IS! I am using these with LED lights in almost all my rooms, and the gain in light as you go from 1-100 is almost exponential to my eyes. There’s almost zero difference between 90 and 100, but the difference between 1 and 3 is significant. Furthermore, 1% with any LED lights I have found is much brighter than 1% with the incandescent halogen bulbs I replaced.

In fact, the only non-LED I am using is in our hallway, which I have rigged as a motion-controlled nightlight after 11pm. I could not find an LED that dimmed low enough to not hurt your eyes at 3am, so it’s an old style bulb.

I would love to change these to CFL/LED controllers. However, I have only found one manufacturer (and can’t find a source that will let me return it after trying it out), I already have these (12 switches) and don’t want to spend $600-750 to upgrade them AND I can’t upgrade 4 of them anyway because the LED specific ones require a neutral, and some of my lights are on old knob-and-tube circuits without a neutral.

Trust me, I did a lot of testing of different bulbs, switches, hubs and systems for this. :smile:

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+1! I see the same thing with my all my led bulbs (which is everything in my condo). 1% is a pretty noticeable change with LED bulbs.

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I think it should be similar to lesser known Google maps one finger zoom. Tap and hold the giant green/grey area and slide right or left to dim. Same on the things list, tap and hold the row to dim instead of getting a pointless raindrop animation.

I swear the new dimmer has stop points. I was very good at tracing in kindergarden but can’t make my way around this wheel. The tapping is much easier but I end up toggling the switch half the time. Let’s use the real estate available and have some instructional popups to show people how it works when they first install.

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Osram Lightify LED lamps are significantly dimmer at 1% than the Cree or the GE bulbs. I swapped out the Bedroom lamps for the far more expensive Osrams.

Now to find a way to set their color temperature to daylight in the morning and warm white at night automatically.

Those fan controls need the custom devicetype with discrete buttons. Check out this one. We haven’t quite figured out the best format for the new multiattribute tile.