SmartThings relaunches with Samsung backing, includes home camera

3 Sep 2015

SmartThings Hub image via SmartThings

After some delay, the Samsung-owned SmartThings internet of things (IoT) home-hub has revealed its latest version of its hardware and accompanying app with an added CCTV feature.

SmartThings has been on the up-and-up since it won the 2012 Spark of Genius award at that year’s Dublin Web Summit for its technology, which allows a home to be interconnected across a variety of devices, all controllable from a mobile phone.

In August 2014, however, the start-up arguably made its biggest break by being snapped up by South Korean giant Samsung, which has, just over a year later, finally re-released SmartThings with added Samsung tinkering.

The unassuming, white ‘smart hub’ box is what drives the home network, powering a range of sensors across the home as well as devices like a coffee maker connected to the network.

In fact, so far the SmartThings hub is compatible with 200 devices in the market, which could increase following its agreement to collaborate with open source code distributor Git Hub.

SmartThings also said that, in the event of a power outage, the device will be able to power the home’s sensor array for up to 10 hours.

The most notable change from previous SmartThings releases is the bumping up of the central hub’s processor, which now facilitates the inclusion of a home camera set-up to monitor activity in the home.

This, the company said, can be either a standard D-Link camera connected to the network or, what they would rather have you doing, is picking up Samsung’s own-brand Natch camera.

The app to control all of these features has also received a major update to not only allow the user to now watch either live or recorded video (recorded clips will be a premium feature) from the home camera, but also the addition of Smart Home Monitor, which will alert the person if something is amiss at home.

From their promotional videos it appears that notifications and tagging yourself in different locations appears to be the most-encouraged feature with the SmartThings update.

For example, if the camera picks up that your pet is on a rampage in the house, it will send you a notification to tell you.

In terms of availability, so far the only markets it’s being sold in are the US and the UK, but it does plan to extend it officially to other countries in the coming months, with the hub being priced at US$99 (€88) and sensors ranging from US$30 (€26) to US$50 (€44).

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic