Using code to drive my own Smarthings

( co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #22

It’s all speculation at this point.

Theoretically, the likelihood is 100%. i.e., Samsung SmartThings has every intention of making sure that every device in the UNIVERSE can be compatible with the SmartThings Cloud (and, in turn, arbitrary UIs and Automations / SmartApps).

Yes - road to hell and intentions, and all that. But logically, SmartThings wants to be inclusive - never, exclusive.


Some staff, I’m sure, feel that way.

But support is telling current customers that the motion sensors in cameras will no longer be available to use even for the official integrations: they want you to use the camera’s own app, which is not integration.

The number of devices on the official “works with SmartThings” list is down to about 40% of what it was in 2015.

The V2 hub had an inactive Bluetooth radio. The V3 hub doesn’t have one at all.

And they have removed the ability to unlock doors with automations. Or to arm and disarm SHM based on geopresence or really anything except time of day.

That’s not an “everything in the universe“ inclusion policy. That’s a “customer support is costing us too much money“ policy.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a big believer in the Buddhist saying “your life is your philosophy.“

What they say is marketing. The real message is what they do.

And everything they’ve done looks like their first priority is a simple reliable home automation system that works well with their appliances and televisions. Emphasis on simple.

But we’ll see. :sunglasses:

( co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #24

These presentations were not from “some staff”; they were high-level engineers sharing official, publishable information. Not back channels, nor misinformed support agents.

Of course, there are so many variables and management levels, departments, etc., involved, that there’s an infinite number of ways this will turn out.

The optimistic hypothesis continues to be that Samsung is in an “extended transition / transformation” period, during which the lack of clarity within and outside the company, paradoxically keeps making that period longer and longer. How the heck can this be optimistic? Depends if “knowing” is better than “not knowing”. In other words, nothing that SmartThings is doing now is set in stone. There have been significant design changes made since the previous SDC - improvements, actually. SmartThings has demonstrated that they can and do discover what’s wrong with their designs and plans (eventually) and then changes course.

They’ll do it again.

The problems with the “Capabilities” limitation and the proposed hyper-streamlined “new Capability approval process” mentioned in this thread is so darn hilariously “obvious”, it is inevitable that they will eventually see this too, and course corrections will be made. I quote “obvious” on purpose. It is equally possible that we don’t see how obvious it is that we are just idiots, and they are so brilliant, it is beyond our ability to comprehend it!

No use being pessimistic. As is and will always be the case: SmartThings is gonna do, what SmartThings is gonna do. As will Samsung, and as will consumers.

The “non-average consumers” that participate in this Community and use tools like WebCoRE, etc., will either continue to have patience with this platform (rewarded or unrewarded) or will move on to whatever they feel fits their individual needs better. Samsung / SmartThings has never taken Community sentiment into account - they aren’t about to start now.

  • Samsung believes that Bixby will be superior to all the similar natural language AI interaction engines. They believe they can convince sufficient numbers of developers and consumers to use Bixby.
  • Samsung also believes that SmartThings Cloud will be superior to all other consumer-oriented IoT platforms (and probably think it can be competitive in the commercial space as well).
  • At SDC18, Samsung emphasized that the above 2 items are highly related.
  • At SDC18, Samsung also demonstrated that they are innovation leaders, by demonstrating the first functioning foldable smartphone display. It may be hubris and outrageous extrapolation, but Samsung projects that their innovations in some areas mean that they will be successful in the other endeavors.

Glaciers do not appear to move - but “this is happening” people; this … “is happening”:

  • All the SmartThings Accounts will eventually be converted to Samsung Accounts.
  • The Classic App will eventually be deprecated, regardless of what is and is not functional in the new App.
  • The Classic Groovy API will also eventually be deprecated, regardless of whether or not existing developers jump ship. The ship isn’t sinking - it’s being overrun with cats.

My silly Saturday night rambling. The morals?

  • Consumers can expect SmartThings to remain as unpredictable as ever. The couple million existing customers are nothing compared to the millions more that will eventually be acquired: SmartThings is now in 22 nations - not just 4.
  • Power-users and small developers can expect SmartThings to remain as unpredictable as ever. We can either continuously accept and adapt to whatever is thrown at us, or just be left behind. Don’t expect life rafts.


The CEO of the company previously promised publicly that there would be a migration tool.

The head of engineering previously promised that reliability would rise to the level that when something goes wrong, SmartThings would be the last thing we would suspect to be the cause.

Two C level executives promised the marketplace in the ST app would expand to provide a way for third party developers to monetize their work.

Multiple high level engineers promised local processing far beyond what V2 delivered.

The CEO personally promised me the SmartenIT 3 toggle would run locally.

Multiple high level staff said the app navigation would be voice accessible.

All promises publicly made over 18 months ago.

I don’t care what their titles are: with this company, if it’s words, it’s marketing.

Their design trajectory should be judged by what they do.


Perfect example.

You can download the new app (in English) in 22 different countries: but you can only add a hub in the US, Canada, and the UK. We get questions about this every month in the forums from people in Sweden or Italy or Greece—all countries where the UK hub worked fine with the Classic app, but where you can’t even set up with the new app. :scream:

From yesterday, but this is only one of many similar posts:

Adding a hub is now a “feature” unsupported in 19 of those 22 countries. And you can now set up a hub in literally dozens fewer countries than you could before. But the 20 foot tall map with all the flags is impressive.

Marketing. :rage: