The new SmartThings Wifi from Samsung is a wireless mesh networking system with a full-fledged SmartThings home-automation hub built in. So while it controls smart-home devices via ZigBee, Z-Wave, IP and Bluetooth, it also extends Wi-Fi signals around the house with Plume AI technology.
Plume, which sells its own Wi-Fi mesh networking products called Pods and SuperPods, says it uses cloud-based artificial intelligence (AI) to provide “stable and consistent Wi-Fi coverage and speed in every room within your home using blazing fast tri-band SuperPods coupled with auto-channel hop technology.”
The company claims its Adaptive Wi-Fi technology “learns your environment and optimizes performance for a powerful, reliable home Wi-Fi experience.”
The system reportedly “allocates more capacity to the devices that need it most.”
If it sounds familiar, it’s because SmartThings Wifi is pretty much the exact same product as Samsung Connect Home, introduced last year. That system is now selling for about $150 for a three-pack. The new version retails for $280. A three-pack can cover a 4,500-square-foot home.
Asked about the difference between the two products, a Samsung spokesperson tells CE Pro, “SmartThings Wifi is the next iteration of Samsung Connect Home, with added AI-based mesh Wi-Fi technology from Plume.”
As with the original Connect Home system, the new Plume-powered model offers parental controls and configurable guest Wi-Fi access. The new system provides connected-device monitoring and performance tracking.
AI-Based Mesh Wi-Fi
Here's how Samsung describes the Wi-Fi learning and optimization features of its Plume-powered SmartThings Wifi system.
Out of the box
After following a simple setup process, mesh Wi-Fi will optimize home will be covered with good Wi-Fi connectivity within 30 minutes. Some SmartThings Wifi hubs may be disconnected briefly for optimization
Within 24 hours
SmartThings Wifi will perform optimizations that improve network speeds as it learns more about network environment
The next few weeks
SmartThings Wifi will continue optimizing, allocating capacity to the rooms and devices that need it the most
Unlike Plume, which charges $200 for lifetime “membership,” Samsung charges no fees for cloud-based Wi-Fi services.
Upgraded SmartThings Hub & Home Automation Devices
In addition to launching SmartThings Wifi, Samsung is “upgrading the performance and connectivity” of its SmartThings hub ($70 as a stand-alone product), water leak sensor, motion sensor, multipurpose sensor and smart outlet.
The hub has been “upgraded with the latest Zigbee, Z-wave, and Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity protocols” and now can be connected via Wi-Fi, not restricted to hardwired Ethernet.
The SmartThings Motion Sensor has been redesigned with a magnetic ball mount, so consumers can adjust the tilt angle for a wider view range.
Samsung is also introducing the new ZigBee-enabled SmartThings Button ($15) with programmable triggers that manually control routines around the home, avoiding the need to open up an app.
The SmartThings Button, like the rest of the SmartThings sensor line, monitors temperature in an area of the home, and can trigger a smart thermostat to adjust automatically.
Read the Complete SmartThings Wifi Press Release, next page
Smarter Wi-Fi, Smarter Home: Samsung Announces New SmartThings Mesh Wi-Fi System
Intelligent Wi-Fi system offers AI-based network optimization with a built-in SmartThings Hub; SmartThings Hub and sensors refreshed with sleek design and improved performance
RIDGEFIELD PARK, N.J. — August 13, 2018 – In an effort to eliminate the dreaded Wi-Fi dead zone and prevent streaming latency, Samsung Electronics America, Inc. today announced its new SmartThings Wifi mesh network system. Equipped with AI-based mesh Wi-Fi technology from Plume and a built-in SmartThings Hub, the system delivers an intelligently optimized whole home network with the added value of complete smart home control throughout every room of the home.
Reliable and secure Wi-Fi is a fundamental need for consumers today, and internet use is no longer limited to the home office or location where the router is based. As more connected technologies enter the home, there is a greater need for a stable network that can efficiently support these devices. The SmartThings Wifi system not only delivers this stability, but also delivers fast and consistent coverage that covers the whole home.
“As more people embrace a connected lifestyle, we’re focused on creating the best experiences so they can get more out of their smart home,” said SK Kim, Senior Director, IoT Product Marketing at Samsung Electronics America. “SmartThings Wifi is an intelligent solution that adapts to the many devices in the home, with mesh capability to eliminate coverage gaps plus a built-in SmartThings Hub to easily monitor and control hundreds of compatible smart products.”
Samsung partnered with Plume to integrate its AI-based mesh Wi-Fi optimization into SmartThings Wifi. The Plume platform adapts to internet usage in the home and intelligently allocates bandwidth, mitigates interference, and delivers maximum Wi-Fi capacity across the home, accounting for every connected device and selecting the optimal band and frequency channel so users can get the fastest speed possible. Plume’s technology can optimize a home network across multiple devices so parents working from laptops can download files while kids stream TV, and gamers experience speed and reliability even when others are on the network. Now, Wi-Fi goes where the need is instead of the other way around. Users can also set parental controls to manage screen time and set-up special logins and passwords for guests using the Plume HomePass® feature.
“Integrating our adaptive home Wi-Fi technology and a rich set of consumer features into SmartThings’ large, open ecosystem truly elevates the smart home experience,” said Fahri Diner, co-founder and CEO, Plume. “Samsung gives you myriad devices to consume content and connect, and Plume ensures that your Wi-Fi network delivers a superior user experience to all of those devices.”
SmartThings Wifi works as a SmartThings Hub to serve as the “brain” of the smart home. Samsung’s open SmartThings ecosystem makes it easy to automate and manage the smart home with one hub and the SmartThings app. Compatible with hundreds of third-party devices and services, SmartThings enables users to expand their smart home with lights, door locks, cameras, voice assistants, thermostats and more. SmartThings Wifi delivers a simple, convenient 2-in-1 solution, offering whole-home automation out of the box.
For corner to corner coverage, users can choose the right Wi-Fi configuration to fit their needs, from a home with multiple levels to a small apartment. Each SmartThings Wifi router has a range of 1,500 square feet, with the 3-pack covering 4,500 square feet, and users can expand coverage by adding additional mesh routers to the set-up. It is easily set-up and managed by the Android and iOS compatible SmartThings app.
The SmartThings Wifi 3-pack retails for $279.99 and the single device retails for $119.99. It is available starting today on Samsung.com and at retailers nationwide.
Samsung Introduces New and Improved SmartThings Hub, Sensors and Outlet
In addition to SmartThings Wifi, Samsung is upgrading the performance and connectivity of its SmartThings Hub, Water Leak Sensor, Motion Sensor, Multipurpose Sensor and Smart Outlet to give consumers more choice in their smart home set up. The new, more compact SmartThings Hub has been upgraded with the latest Zigbee, Z-wave, and Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity protocols. Now, the Hub can wirelessly connect to a Wi-Fi network, no longer needing a dedicated Ethernet cable, so users have the flexibility to place it anywhere in their home.
The SmartThings Motion Sensor is additionally redesigned with a magnetic ball mount, so consumers can adjust the tilt angle for a wider view range to detect motion and trigger automated events. Samsung is also introducing the new SmartThings Button with programmable triggers that manually control routines around the home – like setting Movie Mode – without having to go into the SmartThings app. The SmartThings Button, like the rest of the SmartThings sensor line, monitors temperature in an area of the home, such as basement or baby’s room, and signals the smart thermostat to adjust automatically.
The new SmartThings Hub ($69.99), sensors ($19.99 – $24.99), Button ($14.99) and Smart Outlet ($34.99) are now available on Samsung.com and at retailers nationwide.
For more information about Samsung Smart Home, visit www.samsung.com/us/smart-home.