I will soon be needing better wifi coverage and was researching mesh networks when I came across an article on the Smartthings one. I currently have an older hub and was wondering first of all is their mesh system any good, secondly can I just get a single unit and get it work with my existing hub or do I have to get two units as one will be the “new Smartthings Hub” and the other will be the used as part of the mesh system?
You cannot use your existing hub as part of the new Wi-Fi mesh. Or get it to work with the home automation features of the new hub. You can have each of the hubs on a separate “location“ in your account, but they won’t be able to see the devices that belong to the other one. Whether that is useful to you or not, I don’t know.
The biggest advantage of the Samsung Wi-Fi mesh system with plume is that it has the built-in home automation features. When looked at just as a WiFi mesh, The systems with advanced features like ubiquity and eero are generally rated higher, but it just depends what you need.
Update though… Using the “New” SmartThings App, you can actually have multiple Hubs in one Location: each will have its own ZigBee and Z-Wave networks, and there is risk of some complications like devices joining the “wrong” Hub; or WiFi devices being discovered by both Hubs.
But unlike the Classic App limitation, multiple Hubs are permitted in the same Location and Automations (and Scenes) can mix and match devices attached to either Hub.
I’m personally doing this as a way to slowly transition from one Hub (V1) to another (SmartThings Mesh). This way I can continue to have Smart Lighting and other Routines that use any of my devices … migrated or not.
They did originally tell people exactly that.
But after a number of problems followed, they changed the supportbase article last month, so it now says:
Note: It is not recommended to add a SmartThings Hub to a Location with an existing Hub.
I don’t know if the problems were operational or just customer confusion, but there it is.
As mentioned, the operation of multiple Hubs in a Location works fine - the correct data structures have always been in place; it’s just the Classic App never provided multi-Hub management functions.
So I’m betting “customer confusion” is the reason for the “recommendation”: though I doubt that SmartThings is capable of confusing their customers any more than they already have and are.
If I had encountered the current (over 5 day old!) “split Locations bug”, I would throw my Hub at the window: