This is great news. No, scratch that. This is fantastic news. Samsung is doing the right thing, finally.

If you've bought into the company's smart home efforts previously, you may have noticed a disparate selection of apps to control each one, like Samsung Connect, Samsung Smart Home, and SmartThings. This made no sense except than to show clearly how separate each department is inside the company. But that's no more. As announced at CES, Samsung plans to consolidate "more than 40 apps, including Samsung Connect, (...) into the SmartThings app." 40 apps, yikes... and yes!

But there's more good news for those of you who joined in the Samsung / SmartThings ecosystem. Beside the fact that the platform will be included in the company's new fridge and TV, hundreds of new devices are planned to be brought to SmartThings, and Samsung plans on making the app even more powerful:

  • The SmartThings app will receive a major overhaul in Q1 2018 for Android and iOS and will be available globally.
  • A version of the SmartThings app will be added to Samsung devices that have a display, like TVs, fridges, and more, allowing you to control your home without reaching out for your phone.
  • As part of the overhaul, devs and makers and service providers will have the ability to create custom panels to expand the capabilities of the app. SmartThings already has custom SmartApps and Device Handlers for devices that aren't officially supported, but the new panels are a bigger deal than that. Samsung will make 300 new panels available, but anyone can create one too.

Samsung says that when it acquired SmartThings, it was in 15,000 homes, now it's in over 1 million. Given the new announcement and the recent expansions of the hub into more products (SHIELD Link, TVs, fridges), this looks to be just the start. As a SmartThings owner, I really can't wait to have all my devices plug more naturally into the platform and app. I'm looking at you, Nanoleaf, LiFX, WeMo, Nuki, and all those cameras that aren't yet supported like Netatmo and Nest.

Press Release

All Samsung Devices and Hundreds of Third-Party Products Will Now Be Connected with SmartThings Through the Creation of a Single Next-Generation SmartThings App

SmartThings Announces Industry Leading Growth, Increasing Its Customer Base by 300% in the Past Year, Connecting Over 10MM Devices and Over One Million Homes

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--SmartThings, the industry leader for consumer IoT technology and the easiest way to turn a home into a smart home, announced today that Samsung plans to connect all of its devices to SmartThings, and the SmartThings app will become the single app for consumer IoT across all of Samsung. After staggering growth over the last year, the platform is now in over 1MM homes and is connected to over 10MM devices. Moving into 2018, SmartThings will continue pioneering the future of the smart home by rolling out developer enhancements and next-generation services, all of which will be managed easily through the SmartThings app and cloud.

To strengthen its leading market position and advance the Samsung smart home ecosystem, Samsung plans to bring hundreds of additional devices to the SmartThings platform. To easily connect these devices, the SmartThings app will become the single app for consumer IoT at Samsung in Q1 for both Android and iOS users and will be available globally. As a result, more than 40 apps, including Samsung Connect, will be consolidated into the SmartThings app. Beyond smartphones, SmartThings and Samsung plan to add a version of the app to other Samsung devices that have a screen, including televisions, Family Hub refrigerators, and more.

Planned for launch in Q1 2018, the new SmartThings app includes unique capabilities for partners including device makers, developers, and service providers who can expand the app through the development of custom in-app panels that enable it to go beyond its baseline capabilities. As a starting point, Samsung and SmartThings have created over 300 panels which natively integrate with all devices connected within the SmartThings ecosystem. Unprecedented in the industry, this allows service providers around the world more opportunities to work with the open platform, ultimately improving consumer lives everywhere.

“SmartThings has always been dedicated to creating both valuable and enjoyable experiences for consumers by better connecting their homes. Our open-ecosystem is the most versatile, secure, and simple offering, making it the ideal solution for consumers, device makers, and developers,” said Alex Hawkinson, CEO and Founder of SmartThings. “We will continue to pioneer the smart home and further expand the reach of our open platform. Our goal is to pave the way for next-generation services, security and energy saving technology to open new doors for consumers.”

SmartThings has grown exponentially since the Samsung NEXT acquisition in 2014, increasing its customer base by fourfold in 2017. At the time of the acquisition, SmartThings was in 15,000 homes. Today, SmartThings has reached over 1MM homes and the SmartThings Cloud is connected to over 10MM devices, making it the largest smart home ecosystem available. A testament to the growth, SmartThings now has over 350 “Works with SmartThings” devices certified to work with its platform, 50,000 developers and a cloud ecosystem deployed in 88 countries, giving consumers the most accessibility to achieve their own smart home.

“Through our work with Samsung and our open-ecosystem format, we’re able to identify what consumers, device makers, and partners want and need for the smart home of the future,” states Robert Parker, SVP of Engineering at SmartThings. “With the rollout of the SmartThings app and the new, unique panels for developers, we are leading the next stage of consumer IoT which will create more services available in the smart home industry.”

"We look for entrepreneurs with world-changing ideas and vision, and that's what we saw in the SmartThings team when we acquired them in 2014," said David Eun, President of Samsung and head of Samsung NEXT. "SmartThings has helped bring IoT and smart home technology to the mainstream, and we are still just in the early stages of its evolution. With SmartThings, Samsung is well-positioned to drive mass adoption."

ABOUT SMARTTHINGS

SmartThings is the industry leader for consumer IoT technology and the easiest way to turn a home into a smart home, bringing together devices, developers, and services to give consumers peace of mind, savings and convenience. Built on the founding belief that specific problems in the home can be prevented, SmartThings has become the world's largest and most open smart home ecosystem available on the market today, connecting all your smart devices and services in one place. SmartThings connects over 10MM devices globally. Third-party devices are certified through a “Works With SmartThings” (WWST) program; leading supported devices include Philips Hue, Netgear Arlo, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and many more. Founded in 2012 and based in Palo Alto, CA, SmartThings was acquired by Samsung NEXT in 2014 and operates independently as a wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics. For more information, visit www.smartthings.com.