The Best Smart Home Hub Is Just Less Bad Than Others (Archive)

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mikes153

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Apr 19, 2016
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So would you say holding out on investing into a smart home would be wise? I've recently gained interest and Im looking into buying the Samsung Smart things and get started with Phillips Hue and a door lock.
 

mprospero

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Oct 4, 2013
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@mikes153 As of now, I'd say the Samsung SmartThings is the best bet, but since the category as a whole is still in its early stages, none of the hubs we've tested really stood out. The Philips Hue bulbs are fun, though.
 

Jon_25

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Apr 26, 2016
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What about Vera, Nexia, Insteon, Fibaro, or Vivant? These all seem to be the leaders and they are not on the list.
 

Jonahsdad

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May 28, 2016
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Staples Connect is dead. Except for smartphone OS compatibility, no further updates. I came across this article because I'm looking elsewhere.
 

David_341

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Jun 8, 2016
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I have to echo JON_25's comment.. where are the other industry leaders in this comparison? Why include Domotz?

Also, I feel like this is more of a *list* of a few hubs with features rather than a buyers guide.

Did you try any of these products?
 

bados44

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Dec 8, 2016
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Really WEAK review. Seams like Tom is on the Samsung payroll. I guess they just call it marketing now. Funny that no one is talking about Vera since Samsung bought SmartThings. All we see are half baked reviews like this one deeming SmartThings the winner. On another note, it's ridiculous that people are calling the Amazon echo and the Google Home "Smart Hubs". While they are intelligent, if they don't run Z-Wave or ZigBee protocol, they aren't that "smart" and should be used in conjunction with "Smart Hubs" until they do. Really disappointment in Tom's for selling out.
 

burnormal

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Dec 8, 2016
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Can you use Google Home as a stand alone hub to control Philips Hue lights without having another hub like the Philips Hue or Samsung SmartThings?
 

Joel_59

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Dec 29, 2016
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Amazon Echo products do not act as a hub - they will connect to a 3rd party hub for voice control, but they do not function as hubs on their own.
 

mprospero

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Oct 4, 2013
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They act as a hub in the sense that you can control a wide range of devices from a single interface.



 

Joel_59

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Dec 29, 2016
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They still are not hubs, they are remote controls for someone else's hub. Saying an Echo is a hub is like saying my remote is a TV.
 

Tom_188

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Jan 21, 2017
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I would stay away from door locks. I have read multiple reports that detail security problems with the door locks.
 

Mary_126

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Mar 31, 2017
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I've used Staples Connect as the hub for my zwave door locks for over 3 years ago. It's true this product isn't sold anymore, but it's still being supported, and I have zero complaints. I could have gotten the SAME locks through my security alarm company but they wanted a monthly fee on top of the original purchase. Conspiracy theory time - Apple and Google want to collect all monthly fees and will stomp out any stand alone products that get in their way. I say this because I have the same problem with my DLink security cameras...alarm company wants a monthly maintenance fee on top of the initial cost of the hardware. Unlike the door locks, keeping the Dlink cameras updated has been a royal pain in the a**. I couldn't avoid the fee for my Ring front doorbell camera. Love the product. No update problems. DLink runs through my cable internet wifi and I *think* the Ring doorbell does too, but they have separate apps and I can't get them to go through Staples Connect...wish there was one app that would run everything, BUT I'd keep them separate if I could avoid more monthly fees. Wish someone with more technical knowledge than me (wide-open field there, guys) would address some of these things.
 
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