Will Samsung Shut Down SmartThings? I Asked Them

Will Samsung Shut Down SmartThings? I Asked Them

I’ve been using SmartThings since 2019 and have over 50 devices connected to it including virtual devices, Echo devices, a Thermostat, a door lock, wall power plugs, temperature sensors, motion sensors, etc. All my devices have run smoothly over the years and my smart home automation highly relies on the SmartThings Hub V3. 

As a techie, I’m active on the SmartThings Community and other discussion forums to keep up with the latest advancements on the platform. However, over the last few months, I came across discussion threads related to SmartThings being discontinued by Samsung. If that were to be true, I couldn’t imagine moving to a different platform and setting up all my device automation from scratch. 

Skeptical about this news, I decided to get in touch with SmartThings Support last week via Email. After getting detailed information through their mail and official announcements on SmartThings Community, I got aware of the upcoming changes on the SmartThings platform. 

Not only did I confirm if Samsung was shutting down SmartThings, but also got more information on the latest SmartThings Platform Transition. Here’s what I found: 

While Samsung isn’t shutting down SmartThings, they’ve started discontinuing support for Groovy-based SmartApps as a part of the SmartThings platform transition. 

Groovy SmartApps Shutdown 

SmartThings allows you to control and monitor almost all smart devices using the SmartThings app including the non-Samsung devices configured via SmartThings Hub. The wide range of SmartHub compatible devices includes lights, sensors, smart locks, cameras, doorbells, etc. 

A lot of these devices may rely on the community-based Groovy SmartApp connections to work with the SmartThings app. Earlier this year, Samsung announced the Groovy SmartApp shutdown as a part of their SmartThings platform transition. 

This means that cloud-connected smart devices that rely on older Groovy SmartApp connections or Community-based Groovy SmartApps will no longer work with SmartThings. Note that the Groovy SmartApp Shutdown will not affect the Smart Lighting and SevereWeather Alert SmartApps as they’re in the process of migration. 

Samsung also revealed that they’re planning to migrate supported virtual devices to ensure that these devices remain unaffected after the shutdown. 

SmartThings Platform Transition  

After acquiring SmartThings back in 2014, Samsung has constantly worked towards adding new features and facilitating robust integrations with smart devices. In October 2022, Samsung initiated the process of transitioning away from its legacy Groovy technology. 

This implies that all the SmartThings compatible devices and SmartApps will migrate from the legacy Groovy technology to the new technologies such as SmartThings Edge, Schema, and more. The majority of supported devices have been migrated by the end of last year. 

SmartThings Edge, built with Lua scripting language, highly improves your SmartThings experience by moving the processing location of SmartThings hub connected device automation and commands from the cloud to your hub. This enables a faster and more reliable connection with devices, allowing them to operate locally within your smart home. 

Impact of the transition on your connected devices 

As Samsung started the automatic migration of hub connected devices backed by Groovy DTHs to Edge drivers, you may not experience any change in device features or usage. This is because the device drivers for most common Zigbee and Z-wave devices will automatically be installed on the hub.  

After the transition, supported devices are likely to lose some functionality in the SmartThings app. If you’ve got smart devices connected to the SmartThings hub that use custom Groovy Device Type Handlers (DTHs) installed from the SmartThings Groovy IDE, they are most likely to be impacted post-transition. 

Check if your connected device has been migrated to an Edge driver 

Samsung hasn’t released a published schedule regarding device migration. You may not even receive any notification or alert after the migration is completed. 

Follow these instructions to check if your device is using an Edge driver in the SmartThings app:

  • Open the SmartThings app on your Android or iOS device and select your preferred device
  • Check for the More Options icon (three dots) at the top right corner and tap on it 
  • If your device is Edge-enabled, it will list Driver as an option in the More options menu 

You can also check the Groovy to Edge Device Migration List in the SmartThings Community to check your device migration status as it is being regularly updated by the SmartThings team. 

Troubleshooting methods if your device isn’t working after migration 

If your device isn’t working at all or not functioning properly after being migrated to an Edge driver, try any of the following methods:

  • Close the SmartThings app completely (ensure that it’s not running in the background) and try re-opening the app 
  • Restart your device 
  • Remove and re-add the device to SmartThings that’s not working properly 

Note: Removing and re-adding a device from SmartThings will remove it from any Routines, Scenes, or Services it may be associated with. 

Alternative Ways to Get Unsupported Devices Working Again After SmartThings Platform Transition

If some of your devices have lost functionality or are no longer supported by SmartThings, the following alternatives are your best chance at getting them working again after the latest transition: 

Wait for SmartThings to migrate your device to an Edge driver

The best option is to wait for SmartThings to migrate your device to a compatible SmartThings Edge driver. As mentioned above, this process is random and you may not be notified or informed about the migration. You can choose to keep up with the SmartThings Community and the Groove to Edge Device Migration List for the latest updates regarding new device migrations. 

Remove the device and install a custom Edge driver 

Try removing the device and installing a custom Lua Edge driver available on the SmartThings Community for your preferred device. Now re-add the device to SmartThings. This option allows you to manually move a custom Groovy DTH to the latest custom Lua Edge driver if available. 

If the device shows as a “Thing” and doesn’t work after migration

If your device is added to a placeholder device driver called a “Thing”, it indicates that it’s no longer supported in the SmartThings app. In simpler words, your device cannot be added to automation or controlled via SmartThings anymore. 

In that case, the best option is to try removing and re-adding the device on SmartThings. If that doesn’t work, check if the custom Edge driver for that device is available on the SmartThings Community. I’d recommend keeping up with these threads as developers are regularly adding new Edge drivers for multiple devices. 

SmartThings Station: What’s New? 

Following the ongoing platform transition, Samsung announced SmartThings Station at CES 2023 as the latest addition to their impressive range of smart home hubs. SmartThings Station offers quick setup and compatibility with a wide range of smart home devices including Matter devices. This has been possible due to the recent SmartThings X Matter Integration allowing seamless compatibility across Matter devices.  

Now available on the official Samsung Store, here are some major highlights that you need to know about SmartThings Station: 

Quick & Easy Set Up

SmartThings allows effortless set up with new devices. Users are guided via pop-up messages on their Samsung Galaxy Smartphones for the best guidance. Additionally, they can easily add new devices by simply scanning a QR code using their smartphone camera. 

Smart Routine Adaptability 

SmartThings Station allows you to control multiple devices including door locks, lighting, power outlets, TV, etc. All these devices are interconnected via a smart home server so they work together seamlessly. 

Using a Smart Button on the SmartThings Station, you can activate a routine through the SmartThings app. Moreover, you can trigger up to three different routines with different combinations of Smart Button including long press, short press, and double press activations.  

Don’t Lose Your Devices Again 

If you’ve got a Samsung Galaxy Smartphone, you can easily keep a track of the accurate locations of all the registered devices including smartphones, tablets, watches, etc. 

SmartThings routinely scans your devices and gives you the exact location of connected smart devices around the home. Additionally, it also shares alerts on your smartphone when any of the registered devices leaves or comes back home for seamless device tracking. 

Wireless Charging 

SmartThings Station also acts as a charging pad that supports up to 15W wireless charging. Users can also choose to receive alerts when the charging is complete. 

SmartThings: Ready For Smarter Homes 

Since the end of June 2021, Samsung has shut down SmartThings hub v1 and also discontinued support for the Nvidia Shield adapters. However, Samsung isn’t shutting down SmartThings completely as they recently launched the latest SmartThings Station at CES 2023. 

Over the last few months, SmartThings has been under several technical developments. Earlier this year, Samsung announced the Groovy SmartApp Shutdown as a part of the SmartThings Platform Transition process. All the Community-based Groovy SmartApps including cloud-connected devices that rely on older Groovy SmartApp connections no longer function with SmartThings now. 

The Platform Transition was started back in October 2022, when Samsung started migrating away from its legacy Groovy technology. Over the following months, all major SmartThings compatible devices and SmartApps have been migrated from the Groovy technology to the new SmartThings Edge technology based on the Lua Language. 

This transition has opened doors for the latest SmartThings Station that offers a far better, smoother, and effortless compatibility with a wide range of devices including Matter devices as well. 

SmartThings Station offers much more than just allowing you to control your smart devices. The station allows quick set up via QR code for devices including smart routine allowing you to trigger up to three routines for multiple devices via Smart Button. 

Additionally, with wireless charging and find your device features, SmartThings Station is a lot more than a general smart home hub. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is Samsung coming out with a new SmartThings hub? 

Samsung revealed SmartThings Station at CES 2023 following the recent ongoing SmartThings Platform Transition. The latest SmartThings hub allows easy set up and compatibility with a wide range of devices. As a part of the SmartThings X Matter integration, SmartThings Station allows seamless compatibility with the latest Matter devices as well. Not only does SmartThings offers complete control over almost all devices that exist in smart homes, but it also offers next-gen features including a device finder and wireless charging. 

Additionally, as a part of the Matter integration with SmartThings, the SmartThings Station can now be used to connect iOS devices. This allows iPhone or iPad users to control smart devices connected to the SmartThings platform.  

Is the Samsung SmartThings hub v3 and Aeotec Smart Home hub the same product? 

The only single difference between the Aeotec Smart Home hub and Samsung SmartThings hub v3 is the branding. While both products are almost identical, the hub is now being manufactured by Aeotec instead of Samsung. Samsung continues to make software for SmartThings but decided to no longer build the hardware under its own brand. Thus, the production of the hub was moved to Aeotec which led to the launch of the Aeotec Smart Home hub. 

When did the SmartThings Platform Transition begin? 

From October 15, 2022, Samsung started migrating SmartThings devices and SmartApps from its legacy Groovy technology to the latest SmartThings Edge, based on the Lua scripting language. 

SmartThings Edge highly improves the SmartThings experience by moving the processing location of your connected smart device from the cloud to your hub. This creates a faster and more reliable connection across all your devices which operates locally within your home. 

Are there any SmartThings alternatives available?

There are several home automation tools available as SmartThings alternatives. The best alternative is Home-Assistant which is both free and Open Source supporting a wide range of smart devices. Google Home can also be considered a SmartThings alternative as it allows control over Google Home devices.

Another SmartThings alternative is Hubitat as its interface is similar to the IDE interface of SmartThings. Hubitat has been a common hub and the best alternative for users who want to transition from cloud-based support to local support for their Groovy-based SmartApps. 

About the author

Maria Chan, or MC, as we call her, is the genius girl-boss who gave up on her cushy silicon-valley job to grind it out with us. Her undying pursuit of wanting Zeebox to the best makes it very clear that she has no interest in running a generic tech-site.

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