Samsung Overhauls the SmartThings App Even Though It’s Killing the SmartThings Hub

Samsung Overhauls the SmartThings App Even Though It’s Killing the SmartThings Hub
The refreshed Samsung SmartThings app. (Photo: Florence Ion/Gizmodo)

Samsung just overhauled the user interface for its SmartThings smart home app, which includes a redesigned home screen and reorganization of menu items.

The new interface is available for Android users today, with an iOS update following soon. Samsung says this update falls in line with its recent redesign of the Windows 10 app, which offers a similar visual experience. I don’t have a SmartThings Hub in my home to test the new interface, but from the screenshots made available on the Play Store, the new app emphasises familiar routines, with an aesthetic that mimics Samsung’s One UI on its Android devices.

The previous version of the SmartThings app prioritised categorising devices by room. This new version splits up features by sectioning them off into five parts. The new Favourites page is essentially the home screen, with quick access to SmartThings devices, scenes, and services. The Devices page lets you view and control connected smart home gadgets, while the Life page helps surface some of the freebies and services you can enable with your Samsung account. It’s also where you’ll find the SmartThings Cooking feature, essentially an AI-driven personal chef that helps you do meal prep. The Automations page is another section where you can create smart home routines and links together cloud services. The last page is essentially the overflow, housing links to SmartThings Labs, settings for notifications, and more.

The new SmartThings interface. (Image: Samsung) The new SmartThings interface. (Image: Samsung)

The interface update is a clear indicator that Samsung is staying committed to the SmartThings platform — sort of. Samsung has been majorly overhauling its smart home ecosystem, perhaps in preparation for the arrival of Matter devices later this year, though there are no details about Samsung’s hardware plans for the new smart home standard. And it’s leaving behind a few legacy devices, which has created a bit of doubt on its future trajectory. Samsung is retiring support for the first-generation SmartThings hub, the SmartThings Link for Nvidia Shield, and the Samsung SmartThings ADT security hub at the end of June.

If you are actively using those devices, you should have received an email from Samsung about upgrading earlier this year. If you plan to stick to the SmartThings ecosystem, you can still use the SmartThings app to control any connected devices, but only if you have the new SmartThings-compatible Aeotec Smart Home Hub. Usually a $US125 ($160) device, it’s only $US35 ($45) with a voucher from Samsung, though you’ll have to reach out to SmartThings support more for specifics.