Why Smartthings?

Ok, here’s a fun one!!

Don’t get me wrong… I looove this platform and I’ve been onboard ever since the kickstarter days (yeah, a long time ago)… been thru all the highs and lows…

Just that I was recently asked this one question… and although I gave a reply… I kept on wondering…

Why use smartthings when there’s other options like Domoticz? Give me your thoughts people!

My house came with a z-wave lock, thermostat and Nexia hub. Quickly outgrew its capabilities and went looking. Chose SmartThings because:

  1. Cheap
  2. no monthly fees
  3. open environment

When I got into it 3 years ago, it was ‘best choice’ for DIY/home jobber. Different landscape 3-4 years ago.

I’m an open source fanboy, so how open it seemed or at least ‘hackable’ was a draw. At least felt like it had a community of ‘hackers’ to help prop up the general users.

Why am I still here… cost of leaving is kinda one thing. But there’s not much out there for real automation not just control. I dont want to talk to my house, i dont want to just hit a different button instead of a switch. I want automation where things just happen. Not much else out there will automate well.


I joined the kickstarter… 3 years later there’s no turning back :wink:




Ummm, the SmartThings Kickstarter was 5+ years ago…


Time flies when you’re having fun, eh? :wink:


holy crap! 5 years already??? yikes!


Oh man, ok, see what I mean? :smiley:


Well, almost 3 years here on the forum, but been lurking for about a year … yeah, I checked, LOL.

To be honest, I can’t even remember why or how I landed in SmartThings Land :thinking: … maybe I was abducted by aliens or something … I need to hire a hypnotist to find out :neutral_face:

But, generally, the ST automation have been working fine for me … despite having to deal with some of the unannounced “features” being occasionally added in background.

Comparing SmartThings to Domoticz is like apples and oranges. SmartThings is a well-established, off-the-shelf system backed by a major world-class corporation, while Domoticz is an open-source, unsupported software that can run on a third party hardware (if you have skills to set it up). If you want fair comparison, then stack it agains something in the same league, like Vera, Iris or Wink.


I feel like the correct answer is Webcore.


3 years???

Nearly 6 years!


We are only at the very tip of the start of the wave of automation … real day-to-day home “smartening”.

The foundation is evolving quickly in the domain of artificial intelligence and deep learning.

Just look at how Google Assistant (and Alexa) are able to not only interpret speech, but also make inferences. You can ask for dinner suggestions, and it will take your past preferences for Chinese food into account (etc.).

That is the direction that Samsung (and Amazon, and Google, and ?) expects to take with smart home automation:

  • The platform will notice the routine your manually follow every evening when preparing for bed - the lights you turn off, the security you enable, the temperature of the thermostat; and it will suggest / ask if you would like this to be automatic.

  • The platform will accept rules in natural language, like “Bixby, when nobody’s home, please alert me if the garage door has been left open.”. And any of billions of variations.

This is being researched now. And you’d think after 5 years, we’d have some of this AI already in SmartThings, but … some things accelerate suddenly and surprisingly … eventually.


Maybe you are right Terry. What I hate is that if that’s the case, about all they are learning off me is I go to bed and hit ‘one button for go to bed routine’ about the same time during the week… Now will it then realize the weekend is different?

AI and learning this definitely will change how we do automation. My only complaint is I once thought how smart my android phone one day gave me time to Kroger’s around lunch time…since a few times in a row I went to get lunch from the salad bar… But also it doesn’t know that it wasnt a ‘habit’. Like how it took nearly 6 months now for it to quit telling me ‘time to work’, despite the fact I even deleted the ‘work address’ from my phone and account totally when our office closed. Every day…‘traffic is heavy on route’, well my route is now from the bed to the other room. It refused to learn this.

Will AI get better, yea. Will natural language instructions get better, yea. Do I want most of this, not really…‘get off my lawn’ - me the grumpy old man


AI won’t be considered “intelligent” until it does.

Though we may also temper our expectations too. Humans aren’t mind readers - we can’t tell when our spouse is not in the mood for Chinese food without asking (except maybe after 30 years of marriage?). So we shouldn’t expect that of AI either.

Artificial Intelligence != Artificial Telepathy != Artificial Prescience

I agree with you on that part… but… how do you explain that G many times, if not always, will immediately suggest on the first spot in the list exactly what I want right after I type just ONE letter?

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When I decided to go with SmartThings in 2014, I had a difficult time deciding between ST and Revolv. The IDE and the fact that we can mess with code ourselves is what finally pushed me to go with ST. There were some very rough patches those first couple of years but, I haven’t found a better (affordable) solution so far.


I had no idea that SmartThings existed. I moved into a larger home and my utility bill was on average $600!

I immediately started researching ways to cut cost and thus after 2 days of looking at options, I decided upon SmartThings.

After being frustrated at how limited it was on its own, I discovered the wonderful IDE and custom DTH and Apps!

Then, I discovered CoRE!

Then, I fell in love with SmartThings!

This is why I stay. Let’s all be real, webCoRE is SmartThings.

Also, this great community and all those who have contributed to expanding its functionality.

To be totally honest, I don’t really love “SmartThings”…I love this community!


Hate to burst your bubble (and dilute any of the well-deserved praise for WebCoRE…), but, let’s all be real:

Only a few thousand (max) SmartThings households use WebCoRE (and/or this beloved Community); out of the roughly 1 million SmartThings households in the world. That’s fewer than 1%.

The Community has a very distorted perspective of what they think the average SmartThings customer is.


That still holds water. Let’s ALL be real is true. In his “distorted” reality, the all means those who read the post and this tread. Who cares why others love SmartThings we ALL love it for what this community is about. (Submitted by a noob with a smirk on my face) lol …