Can SmartThings do what IRIS could? – focus on security
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I need to migrate fast, but I don’t have time for research right now (as I’m sure many of us), and I don’t have experience with any other system other than IRIS.  My primary focus is on security.

Can people who have used SmartThings please answer if ST offers the security features I listed below.  Note that IRIS did all these things, and that’s why I liked it very much (still can’t believe I have to start talking about IRIS in the past……..).  And I want these features out of the box, not after hours of tinkering and customization.

I’m looking for specific facts to make an informed decision quickly, not to have a general discussion.  To keep it to the point, please contribute only if you have used SmartThings and know the answers for sure (just skip the questions you don’t know the answers for).   The questions are specific, so I would appreciate if you quote my message and just put YES/NO against each question you know the answer to, and add a comment if necessary.  Feel free to add your other comments at the end if desired.

What I consider important for a useable security system:

1.      Keypad (wireless) to arm/disarm with a PIN

2.      Adjustable countdown time for arming/disarming

3.      Partial arming mode – ability to exclude any sensor from the Partial mode

4.      Ability to exclude a sensor from all arming modes (Full, Partial, etc), however get notified every time the sensor is opened/triggered

5.      If at any time the sensor disconnects or goes offline, the system will notify me.  Also, how soon will I get the notification?

6.      If a sensor goes offline, or is open, and I try to arm the system, it will (1) alert me that some sensors are open or offline (2) still allow me to arm the system with those sensors bypassed

7.      Notifies if a sensor has low battery

8.      Records the history of all sensor events, with a timestamp

9.      Provides mobile app (iOS/Android) to arm/disarm, check sensor status, view history, turn on/off smart plugs

10.   Mobile app can be installed on multiple phones

11.   What kind of notifications provided when the alarm is triggered:  mobile app notification, SMS, phone call, email, or multiple?

12.   Specify that 2 or more motions sensors must be triggered before alarm goes off, to prevent single motion sensor false alarms

13.   Packages all the above features in a self-monitoring plan which is free (if not free, how much?) 

14.   Pro monitoring option month-to-month with no contract

15.   Will IRIS sensors that work with SmartThings be supported on all the above features and can participate in the security setup with no special limitations?

16.  Does the SmartThings hub have low power consumption (under 5W)? - this is critical for proper battery backup.

Note that I did not ask for battery and cellular backup, because I have it handled separately and don’t need to rely on the hub for that.  But it would be nice to have just in case.

Edited by virtu789
added #16

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Nice write up

 

I need to migrate fast, but I don’t have time for research right now (as I’m sure many of us), and I don’t have experience with any other system other than IRIS.  My primary focus is on security.

Can people who have used SmartThings please answer if ST offers the security features I listed below.  Note that IRIS did all these things, and that’s why I liked it very much (still can’t believe I have to start talking about IRIS in the past……..).  And I want these features out of the box, not after hours of tinkering and customization.

I’m looking for specific facts to make an informed decision quickly, not to have a general discussion.  To keep it to the point, please contribute only if you have used SmartThings and know the answers for sure (just skip the questions you don’t know the answers for).   The questions are specific, so I would appreciate if you quote my message and just put YES/NO against each question you know the answer to, and add a comment if necessary.  Feel free to add your other comments at the end if desired.

What I consider important for a useable security system:

1.      Keypad (wireless) to arm/disarm with a PIN - You would have to use someone else's "Code" or "app" to make this work. 

2.      Adjustable countdown time for arming/disarming - See above 

3.      Partial arming mode – ability to exclude any sensor from the Partial mode - See above 

4.      Ability to exclude a sensor from all arming modes (Full, Partial, etc), however get notified every time the sensor is opened/triggered - Not sure this was an option in the app. 

8.      Records the history of all sensor events, with a timestamp - it did do this. 

9.      Provides mobile app (iOS/Android) to arm/disarm, check sensor status, view history, turn on/off smart plugs - again only if you locate someone else code online, or write your own, install it with the web portal and hope it works. From what i read there were still some bugs. 

10.   Mobile app can be installed on multiple phones - Can do this 

11.   What kind of notifications provided when the alarm is triggered:  mobile app notification, SMS, phone call, email, or multiple? - Don't know, couldn't get the "app" to actually work. 

12.   Specify that 2 or more motions sensors must be triggered before alarm goes off, to prevent single motion sensor false alarms - you would probably need to write code. 

13.   Packages all the above features in a self-monitoring plan which is free (if not free, how much?)  

14.   Pro monitoring option month-to-month with no contract 

15.   Will IRIS sensors that work with SmartThings be supported on all the above features and can participate in the security setup with no special limitations? Okay this is the tricky part. 

Only V2 sensors will pair with the ST hub. If you get the ST & ADT, you can only use the ATD sensors and only use 5. of them. 

Note that I did not ask for battery and cellular backup, because I have it handled separately and don’t need to rely on the hub for that.  But it would be nice to have just in case.

 

So yes, ST can do some of this. I removed the questions i didn't have answers to because i couldn't get the 3rd party apps, plug ins to work. In order to get ST to work like an alarm, you have to have a plug in or code. There are some you can pay money to subscribe to, there are some free ones. I have the v2 keypad. I installed the "plug in" for that and the SmartApp someone else had written and couldn't get it to work. 

 

in my mind, if i can't get it to work easily, then its going to have failure points and will not be dependable. 

 

as of right now. I have been tossing around moving to abode. Or keeping smarthings to do automation and get ring because i am already paying for that. 

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6 hours ago, Twhalen24 said:

What systems are you going with 

Wife has brand name recognition with SimpliSafe and I'm going with that. Much better price on Amazon than on their site. At least as of yesterday they 

had a BOGO offer for cameras. That way she can control the security and I can do automation via SmartThings without messing up the former. The ST 

part was solidified when I saw it works with my 2 garage door openers, maybe my door lock and in the future hopefully my 2 thermostats. 

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20 hours ago, Dan8785 said:

Ring alarm will do most of the things you are wanting to do.  I plan to do Ring for Security, then Smart Things for home automation only.  

I thought about this, but I really don't want to loose the ability to use motion and contact sensors for automation.

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41 minutes ago, Smitho said:

I thought about this, but I really don't want to loose the ability to use motion and contact sensors for automation.

The more I try to figure out which system to go with, the more I realize just how much combo work the contacts and motion sensor are doing for me.  I feel like separating out the systems to avoid this type of monumental failure at my house, even if it means some doors having dual sensors.

It is nice to be a part of this forum which offers a very diversified outlook and experience with various systems. 

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1.      Keypad (wireless) to arm/disarm with a PIN - just use presence on your phones or fob keypads are so yesterday
2.      Adjustable countdown time for arming/disarming - the presence option has a delay setting by min.
3.      Partial arming mode – ability to exclude any sensor from the Partial mode - yes you can configure contact and motions individually.
4.      Ability to exclude a sensor from all arming modes (Full, Partial, etc), however get notified every time the sensor is opened/triggered - you can exclude it from security armed away and armed stay and then create a custom monitor that notifies you based many options.
5.      If at any time the sensor disconnects or goes offline, the system will notify me.  Also, how soon will I get the notification? Haven't tested this.
6.      If a sensor goes offline, or is open, and I try to arm the system, it will (1) alert me that some sensors are open or offline (2) still allow me to arm the system with those sensors bypassed - yes
7.      Notifies if a sensor has low battery - yes
8.      Records the history of all sensor events, with a timestamp - yes very detailed in notifications menu
9.      Provides mobile app (iOS/Android) to arm/disarm, check sensor status, view history, turn on/off smart plugs - yes
10.   Mobile app can be installed on multiple phones - yes
11.   What kind of notifications provided when the alarm is triggered:  mobile app notification, SMS, phone call, email, or multiple? mobile app notification, and SMS both
12.   Specify that 2 or more motions sensors must be triggered before alarm goes off, to prevent single motion sensor false alarms - No
13.   Packages all the above features in a self-monitoring plan which is free (if not free, how much?)  free
14.   Pro monitoring option month-to-month with no contract - not without ADT I believe and I've not heard good things.
15.   Will IRIS sensors that work with SmartThings be supported on all the above features and can participate in the security setup with no special limitations? - Yes
16.  Does the SmartThings hub have low power consumption (under 5W)? - this is critical for proper battery backup. - just buy a ups.

See screenshots... 803ef74cef69ae1c7d9761fd33c3481b.jpga47a8bf1499053f730d34ac5b61a3a0d.jpg43c1e8f6bb6fd0b38bf41f46691f32ae.jpg10bcdcbb9575a9228ebd05949ed9efa0.jpg74bf5d879624a4e7ddd3fcb27c0d02ca.jpgfaea6d28ca99e589e2442cf58655143e.jpgc7fa2639d0f3fc61f31497a86af308e5.jpg30dfdcf4f7073dfe5f927ef608d7cf66.jpgbd4eb245d1be788df1526d3c770b1735.jpg

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@dusterp - oh thank you so much for taking time to answer all the items – you have given me most complete help so far.  Even a SmartThings rep on the other forum did not bother to answer each item.  And grateful for the screenshots too! 

One thing I’d disagree with you though: keypads are very much in today IMHO, and that’s why it was #1 in my list.  How many times I’d come home with my phone discharged and couldn’t use the app to disarm.  And I hate carrying an extra fob with me.  Also if I have a couple of relatives who could enter my house in an urgent situation, I don’t want to equip them all with fobs, and track their battery status, etc.…a PIN is all I want to carry around with me and give to others.

So, by presence do you mean geolocation on the phone, or a fob presence?  Which one does ST support out of the box?

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5 hours ago, virtu789 said:

@dusterp - oh thank you so much for taking time to answer all the items – you have given me most complete help so far.  Even a SmartThings rep on the other forum did not bother to answer each item.  And grateful for the screenshots too! 

One thing I’d disagree with you though: keypads are very much in today IMHO, and that’s why it was #1 in my list.  How many times I’d come home with my phone discharged and couldn’t use the app to disarm.  And I hate carrying an extra fob with me.  Also if I have a couple of relatives who could enter my house in an urgent situation, I don’t want to equip them all with fobs, and track their battery status, etc.…a PIN is all I want to carry around with me and give to others.

So, by presence do you mean geolocation on the phone, or a fob presence?  Which one does ST support out of the box?

Agree on the keypad issue. Keypads are essential for me too. With multiple keypads throughout the house I can hear the chime for those doors that I have it set on for without having to have my phone on my person. 

I also think the ability to have a one-time code (and being able to set that up from the mobile app) to let someone you know in to drop something off would be nice. Even my GDO keypad allows me to set a one-time code (only locally of course), which has proven useful on occasion.

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[mention=44]dusterp[/mention] - oh thank you so much for taking time to answer all the items – you have given me most complete help so far.  Even a SmartThings rep on the other forum did not bother to answer each item.  And grateful for the screenshots too! 
One thing I’d disagree with you though: keypads are very much in today IMHO, and that’s why it was #1 in my list.  How many times I’d come home with my phone discharged and couldn’t use the app to disarm.  And I hate carrying an extra fob with me.  Also if I have a couple of relatives who could enter my house in an urgent situation, I don’t want to equip them all with fobs, and track their battery status, etc.…a PIN is all I want to carry around with me and give to others.
So, by presence do you mean geolocation on the phone, or a fob presence?  Which one does ST support out of the box?
Presence can be either, Geo phone location or fobs. ST has it's own fob but Iris are supposed to work to. I haven't tried them yet. You can always use your door lock unlocking to disarm and arm the house. You can also use a light switch that's out of the way. I'd recommend a hidden button only you and the person you want in to know about if the lock disarming it causes concern. If you use a button you could program it to arm on single tap and disarm on press and hold. I use the door unlock method because for me if they have a code then why not just make the door lock a keypad. Yes someone could break a glass window by the door and unlock it from the inside but I have a glass break sensor to cover that alert and window and motion sensors. ST does have 3rd party apps that make the Iris keypads work but I've not used them. It also has a 3rd party lock app that only allows the door lock's keypad to disarm vs the lock just unlocking to disarm. So with ST you can do anything you want but it requires a 3rd party app depending on what you want to do. I've tried to stick with stock apps.

Iris Who?

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Agree on the keypad issue. Keypads are essential for me too. With multiple keypads throughout the house I can hear the chime for those doors that I have it set on for without having to have my phone on my person. 
I also think the ability to have a one-time code (and being able to set that up from the mobile app) to let someone you know in to drop something off would be nice. Even my GDO keypad allows me to set a one-time code (only locally of course), which has proven useful on occasion.


I just posted on how to solve for keypads with the door lock pad and mentioned pros and cons along with other alternatives including adding Iris keypads, see previous post.

If you have Alexa or Sonos devices you make them say anything when anything happens so it's far superior to a beep on a keypad IMO. You actually know what's going on without having to check your phone to see why the keypad beeped. Like, "master sparc your front door is open" or "garage door open master sparc" or even could make it say "shut the damn door kids the AC is on" if the AC is on and the door is open for more than x minutes. Echo dots are cheaper than a keypad and multipurpose.

You couldn't set a one time code in Iris. You can in Smartthings with the 3rd party smart Lock app. You also get lock code schedules back to for a housekeeper on Wednesdays from 9am to 3pm as an example. If you don't want to use 3rd party you can always go in the app from anywhere and create a code and once used you can go in and delete it very easily, burner code solved, and much easier than getting out your GDO manual to remember how to set a burner code on those devices in person. 0bdfc337a09b7263091cf85d52dfe6fc.jpg6702e6882849e06162f0a503e29b5d57.jpg222104d7a9b864dd5563ab415462a760.jpg

Iris Who?

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20 minutes ago, Twhalen24 said:

What hub do you guys recommend? V2 or V3?

There is no difference in core capabilities between the two, however there are some nuances..

 

The v3 hub can connect on wired Ethernet or wireless and is capable of switching between the two automatically.    The v2 hub is wired Ethernet only.

The v3 hub is Zigbee 3.0 compatible out of the box.  The v2 hub will be software upgrade able.  None of this means anything now as the SmartThings app doesn’t support QR code pairing yet.

The v2 hub has the option for battery backup (4 AA).  The v3 hubs does not.

The v2 hub has a faster processor and more memory than the v3 hub.  This is only a benefit for local processing and probably not noticeable until you have a couple hundred devices.

 

Those are all of the differences that I know of.

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On 2/17/2019 at 9:37 AM, IrisUsers said:

There is no difference in core capabilities between the two, however there are some nuances..

 

The v3 hub can connect on wired Ethernet or wireless and is capable of switching between the two automatically.    The v2 hub is wired Ethernet only.

The v3 hub is Zigbee 3.0 compatible out of the box.  The v2 hub will be software upgrade able.  None of this means anything now as the SmartThings app doesn’t support QR code pairing yet.

The v2 hub has the option for battery backup (4 AA).  The v3 hubs does not.

The v2 hub has a faster processor and more memory than the v3 hub.  This is only a benefit for local processing and probably not noticeable until you have a couple hundred devices.

 

Those are all of the differences that I know of.

My version 2 hub and version 2 keypad didn't always communicate leading to the alarm activating and having to enter the code more than once or use the phone app to disarm the alarm. Distance (35'), wood furniture (2 1" thick panels) and walls (2) were probably a factor. With the V3 hub and keypad combination it worked everytime. According to IRIS they both had better range and it made my system work every time.

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13 hours ago, GaryS1964 said:

My version 2 hub and version 2 keypad didn't always communicate leading to the alarm activating and having to enter the code more than once or use the phone app to disarm the alarm. Distance (35'), wood furniture (2 1" thick panels) and walls (2) were probably a factor. With the V3 hub and keypad combination it worked everytime. According to IRIS they both had better range and it made my system work every time.

Just so I am clear, I am speaking in terms of SmartThings v2 vs v3 hubs..  Not Iris.  I know nothing about the differences between the Iris hubs as I've never owned a v3 hub.

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17 hours ago, Twhalen24 said:

I was also asking about smartthings hubs

Here's what I think you want to know:

Capture.PNG.3c03e1eed3771f8f1434235883119bf5.PNG

The day we got the discontinuation email I went to Best Buy and bought the SmartThings hub, v3 was the only one they had locally.  I love the wireless but the lack of battery backup was surprising to me.  Otherwise I don't think they offer any functionality difference??  I'm not sure but I wouldn't think v3 wouldn't be compatible with things v2 is.  Only Iris'd be that dumb 😏

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I will proceed to answer your inquiry focused on the ADT SmartThings Security Hub setup.

1.      Keypad (wireless) to arm/disarm with a PIN. Yes.

2.      Adjustable countdown time for arming/disarming. Yes.

3.      Partial arming mode – ability to exclude any sensor from the Partial mode Yes. Away, and Stay modes. Stay mode is analgous to Partial.

4.      Ability to exclude a sensor from all arming modes (Full, Partial, etc), however get notified every time the sensor is opened/triggered. Yes.

5.      If at any time the sensor disconnects or goes offline, the system will notify me.  Also, how soon will I get the notification? Yes, I have noted a delay of about 15 seconds.

6.      If a sensor goes offline, or is open, and I try to arm the system, it will (1) alert me that some sensors are open or offline (2) still allow me to arm the system with those sensors bypassed. Yes, and no. You will have to configure the offending sensor to bypass, a bit more complicated, but possible.

7.      Notifies if a sensor has low battery. Maybe. It shows battery state, but I don't know if it will notify on low. Haven't gotten to that point yet.

8.      Records the history of all sensor events, with a timestamp. Yes

9.      Provides mobile app (iOS/Android) to arm/disarm, check sensor status, view history, turn on/off smart plugs. Yes.

10.   Mobile app can be installed on multiple phones. Yes.

11.   What kind of notifications provided when the alarm is triggered:  mobile app notification, SMS, phone call, email, or multiple? You CAN configure for push, SMS, phone call (via IFTTT) and of course, with paid support all of the above.

12.   Specify that 2 or more motions sensors must be triggered before alarm goes off, to prevent single motion sensor false alarms. Unknown. Haven't used it this way.

13.   Packages all the above features in a self-monitoring plan which is free (if not free, how much?) . Can be self monitored, if you own a home, you might want to consider paid moniroring. The insurance discount may be enough savings to pay for itself...

14.   Pro monitoring option month-to-month with no contract. No.

15.   Will IRIS sensors that work with SmartThings be supported on all the above features and can participate in the security setup with no special limitations? No.

16.  Does the SmartThings hub have low power consumption (under 5W)? - this is critical for proper battery backup. I do not know. They claim it has 24 hour battery backup, and the battery is about the size of a standard 9V if I recall...

Overall I have found both advantages and disadvantages to ADT ST. The advantages outweigh the disadvantages...

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