The Next Generation of SmartThings is Here

@JDRoberts my bad - I misunderstood your position. In any case, I still think they lock in - in the sense that their APIs aren’t open. Yes you can use ZigBee and Z-Wave and several other devices (but SmartThings controls which ones that is). Also you can only control them using the smart things hub, and you have to use their own proprietary cloud API. I’m saying we need non-proprietary local access APIs, and we need a standard so we don’t need SmartThings to be the ones to implement support for new devices - they should just autodiscover AllJoyn devices on the network and roll with them. And likewise if a new better controller comes out, I want my SmartThings hub to switch over to just being a dumb DSB bridge for the better controller.

I have written my own LIFX and Philips Hue DSB, and the Raspberry PI 2 Windows IOT image comes with a ZWave DSB built in (just plug in a zwave usb controller). This means my PI is running several independent set of DSBs - any AllJoyn enabled controller can now use all these devices. The architecture is pure beauty and nicely pluggable. It effectively means I have several different kind of lightbulbs (and still buying more kinds :slight_smile: ) but they can all be controlled with the exact same code and works in one simple app I built. When a Thread USB controller; comes out, I just plug that in, start up the DSB service, and I’m done. No reason to touch the app or any controller/hub device. You can hardly grasp how HUGE this is - we can effectively disconnect two things that shouldn’t be so tightly connected and grow them each independently and faster.

And Thread not being a ZigBee competitor? I’m aware of the collaboration, but they both seem to try and solve the same problem, working together or not. AllJoyn effectively sits on top and therefore doesn’t have this huge overlap that Thread and ZigBee has.

I’ll admit to not knowing a lot about AllJoyn (maybe @dlieberman can add color) but I do know we plan to support Thread in the new Hub.

As for openness, and particularly with regards to SmartThings controlling what devices are added. Individuals can add many devices to their own setups without any intervention from SmartThings. You are not going to ever get that from many other platforms.


@Ben So what does it mean when you state “we support over 200 different devices” ? To me that sounds like a limited set. By using AllJoyn introspection, you could support all devices that are exposed to alljoyn, meaning essentially unlimited.

Great to hear Thread support is coming - that’s like the first proper detail I’ve heard about the new hub :wink:

@dotMorten - You can think of ZigBee (at least in the HA context) as three distinct layers - the MAC/PHY layer which is defined by the IEEE 802.15.4 specification, the transport layer known as ZigBee Pro, and an application layer framework known as the ZigBee Cluster Library that defines methods, behaviors, and messages. The last two are defined and maintained by the ZigBee Alliance.

Thread is also based on the IEEE 802.15.4 specification for MAC/PHY, so you can use common radio silicon for Thread and ZigBee. Instead of ZigBee Pro for transport, the Thread specification defines extensions to 6LoWPAN (IPv6 over 802.15.4). That’s where it stops - Thread is purposefully application layer agnostic.

This is where the ZigBee Alliance and the Thread group are collaborating - the intent is for the ZigBee Alliance to make the ZigBee Cluster Library available to run over Thread. This is significant because it will then be relatively straightforward for existing ZigBee device manufacturers to convert their devices to Thread with an OTA update since they’re using the same silicon and firmware development will be familiar. It’s likely the the ZigBee Alliance will continue to develop the ZigBee Pro transport layer, as there are still contexts in which IP transport may not be the right answer.

I don’t think Thread and AllSeen have made any official announcements as to what AllJoyn could look like over Thread, but with Qualcom joining the board of the Thread Group I’m sure you can read between the lines. It’ll be interesting to see what happens though, since AllJoyn is not designed for constrained networks - the messages are rather large and the protocol is pretty chatty, which is never good for wireless devices using batteries. The ZigBee Cluster Library is already designed for those conditions. There are also new protocols like the one being defined by the Open Interconnect Consortium, which is also designed from the ground up to work well over networks made up of constrained devices (it’s based on IPv6 with COAP).

As for the ability to decide what ZigBee or Z-Wave devices you use - as @Ben suggested, you can easily write your own device type handlers for any ZigBee or Z-Wave device and install it into your own account without any intervention from SmartThings. We’ve open sourced (mostly Apache 2.0) the vast majority of our own device type handlers and example SmartApps, and we publish documentation (which, thanks to our Documentation Development team is getting better and better every day). But yes, you’re using our APIs, as you’re using the platform and infrastructure that we’ve built.

There are definitely other frameworks that you can use to roll your own - Windows 10 IoT, OpenHAB, etc - but they’re far more complex to build working systems from the ground up, and they don’t come with the back-end, user experience, or community that SmartThings does. Those tradeoffs will be worth it for some, and for others they won’t.


Am I the only one that can’t help thinking of Big Trouble in Little China when they see 6LoWPAN mentioned?


3 posts were merged into an existing topic: Hub 2 Backordered vs ships 5-7 days

Close this thread, Andy wins the internet for the day.

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2 posts were merged into an existing topic: Hub 2 Backordered vs ships 5-7 days (AKA all shipping related posts, please)

Tazeem - not sure if anyone replied to your question in the midst of all the protocol discussion. I (and many) have included somfy rts through the somfy ZRTSI device which does the zwave to RTS translation. Each device has 16 virtual devices so you can program motors or groupings. Search in the device integration thread.

What is inside the little V2 hub:

EM3587 Silicon Labs Integrated ZigBee/802.15.4 System-on-Chip

SkyWorks SE2432L 528JX 2.4 GHz Smart Energy/ZigBee Front End Module

nRF51822 Nordic Bluetooth Smart and 2.4GHz proprietary SoC

Sigma Designs ZM5304 Z-Wave Serial Interface Module with On-Board Antenna FCC ID:D87-ZM5304-U

Freescale Semiconductor MCIMX6L2DVN10AB Single-Core, Low Power, EPD Controller, ARM Cortex-A9 Core
Samsung k4b4g1646d-bck0 DDR3-1600 256MX16-1600

Samsung KLM4G1YEMD-B031 moviNAND 4GB

Micrel KSZ8081RND10Base-T/100Base-TX PHY with RMII Support

Teardown SmartThings v2 Hub


tags: takenapart teardown disassembled circuit board SmartThings V2 hub


This is interesting. Thanks. Looks like it will at some point have the ability to join the zigbee network created by modern utility meters.

That Skyworks chip is a power amplifier (TX) and low noise amplifier (RX) for the radio signal. ZigBee Smart Energy is part of the ZCL (protocol stack) and could use the same hardware as HA, but I don’t think the stack would work on two networks at once, and the channel will probably be different anyway.

The “Smart Energy” in the description is for marketing I guess.

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While I would love to see integration with smart meters, I wouldn’t get your hopes up in seeing this sort of functionality anytime soon. The zigbee networks used by the utilities are vital for billing and grid monitoring. By allowing third party devices to interface with those networks they open themselves up to a level of risk that most utilities are not comfortable with.

But that aside we can still dream…

Actually, many of the Smart Meters (for instance, the Landis+Gyr EMS Gridstream RF w/Zigbee) being installed have two separate radio networks. One, a 900mhz network is used for communication back to the utility, while a separate Zigbee SE network is available to — optionally — control high load Zigbee SE compatible devises with each residence having it’s own private Zigbee SE network with the meter as the hub.

Consumers are also able to enable access to the data generated by the meter using, on an individual basis, the end user purchasing a Zigbee SE client such as those available from I just need to provide the utility with the a hardware address (MAC?) from the USB stick etc and I can get linked up.

Having two Zigbee chips in the SmartThings hub would have allowed the hub to join directly without adding more … hub like devices.


I have the same question…did you get any replies?

No reply yet. I saw Ben post somewhere they would be coming back. But no answer as to when.

We are going to be releasing a new kit in the next 2-3 weeks.


Thanks for the reply! :slight_smile: Can’t wait to jump in as well…!

Hi @Ben , new to the community and I’ve been eagerly awaiting and looking forward to new v2 hub! It should be a week or so now based on the last post.

Are we able to pre-order now?