Smart Homes, Smart Devices, Internet of Things (IoT) etc have taken the technology industry by storm. In this article we will see an in-depth comparison between two popular smart hub devices, namely the Wink Hub 2 Vs Samsung Smartthings.
UPDATE: In this post we are examining the 2nd Generation of Smartthings Hub. Now, Samsung launched a new SmartThings Hub 3rd Generation [GP-U999SJVLGDA] model which supports WiFi connectivity to your home router just like the Wink Hub 2 model.
People implementing Smart Home devices have a common problem: Each device has its own control app, thus making management of all smart devices a hassle.
Suppose you have installed a smart lock, smart lights, garage door opener, smart thermostat etc in your home. Each one of these has its own app which you must use for managing and controlling each specific device.
What if you could have a centralized hub and a central control app to manage all smart devices in your home from one place? This is where Smart Hubs come into play.
A smart hub works in a way to create a “collection point network” for all wireless smart devices in your home. This hub device can operate the appliances and smart devices in your home through wireless connectivity.
The hub is technically a gateway for regulating and controlling these devices. Furthermore, these smart devices can also be linked with Cortona/Alexa, which work in harmony to provide you an easier and convenient lifestyle.
In this review, we are going to evaluate two existing smart hubs, known by the names of Wink Hub 2 and Samsung SmartThings (2nd Gen), and compare them. They are two of the most famous and best-selling smart hubs in the industry, so the battle is evenly matched.
Table of Contents
- Wink Hub 2 Vs Samsung SmartThings – Comparison Table
- Wink Hub 2 Review
- Samsung Smartthings Review
- Comparison between Wink Hub 2 and Samsung SmartThings
Wink Hub 2 Vs Samsung SmartThings – Comparison Table
Last update on 2020-12-02 at 11:00 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Wink Hub 2 Review
A sophisticated and versatile device, Wink Hub 2 is about the size of a book, narrow and tall, and comes is an all-white encasing. This smart hub features an Ethernet port to connect to the internet router and can also be connected to your home’s network through Wi-Fi.
The newer version Hub 2 boasts support for more wireless protocols to increase compatibility with more smart home devices, an updated app for even better user interface and easier connectivity options.
A cool integration feature of Wink is with IFTTT (If This Then That) which enables devices to trigger actions on other devices in the house. For example, if the smoke alarm goes off then Wink can send you an email or SMS. Also, if the garage door opens, the front door lights can be switched on as well.
Let’s now see the most important features and specs of Wink Hub 2.
Important Specifications and Features
- Supports around 130 smart devices.
- Wireless protocols supported: Bluetooth LE, Z-wave, ZigBee, Kidde, Lutron Clear Connect.
- Both wired Ethernet and Wi-Fi connectivity (2.4 Ghz, 5 Ghz).
- Program recipes with IFTTT (If This Then That).
- Amazon echo integration.
- Supports Stringify App.
- Alexa voice control.
- Real-time monitoring.
- Best for newbies in the Smart Home arena.
In case that you still own the older version of Wink, there are more than a dozen reasons why you should upgrade to Wink Hub 2. The best thing about this Hub is its connectivity and device support. Despite the fact that they all support Z-Wave and Zigbee protocols and Clear Connect, Kidde, and Lutron as well, Wink 2 is even more advanced. It features Bluetooth LE and Wi-Fi radio which is also upgraded to operate at 5 GHz networks in addition to 2.4 Ghz.
Another good thing about Wink 2 is that it includes both an Ethernet port and WiFi access that makes internet connectivity more flexible (the Ethernet cable is included in the kit). This is a big difference compared to Samsung Smartthings 2nd Generation model which works only over Ethernet cable and does not support WiFi internet access.
(EDIT: The new Smartthings Hub 3rd Generation supports WiFi and Ethernet for connection to your router as well).
Wink Hub 2 has larger memory capacity, 512 MB, compared to 64 MB of the older version. It helps for faster data processing, and hence that is the reason it remains the best choice for any individual who owns more than 5 Smart devices.
Compared to the older Wink, its set up is also enhanced by providing the feature of auto-discover and an easy guide. Wink 2 just requires you to download and launch the App, and that is all; the ‘auto-discover’ feature gets at work. Furthermore, the set-up process is also explained in detail in the guide provided.
Wink Hub 2 has focused on security as well. Of late, there have been worries about how safe is the data your Smart home devices gather and in general regarding the security of the whole Internet of Things phenomenon. Wink Hub 2 has high encryption courtesy to its dedicated cryptographic verification hardware which ensures zero plausibility of hacking and guarantees you run only verified and trusted software.
There’s one feature that needs to be added to Wink Hub 2, which is a power back up via a battery so that in case your area faces frequent power failures you’ll still be covered. On the other hand, it lacks USB ports which limits future connectivity with other USB gadgets.
Samsung Smartthings Review
Samsung has released version 2 of SmartThings home automation hub. Its size is a bit larger than a Roku box and is all white in color. It features two USB ports for connecting peripheral devices, an Ethernet port for network connectivity, and a power port of course. It supports only Z-Wave and Zigbee compared to Wink 2 which supports more wireless protocols.
However, you should keep in mind that Z-wave and Zigbee are the two major standards that are quite known in home automation mesh networking today. There’s a high probability that the smart devices found at home improvement stores run on any one of these standards.
Before moving further into the review, let’s first see the most important features and specs of Samsung SmartThings 2nd Generation.
Important Specifications and Features
- Supports around 200 smart home devices.
- 2 USB ports.
- 4 AA batteries for backup.
- Wireless protocols supported: Z-wave, ZigBee.
- Amazon Echo integration.
- Smart sensors.
- High compatibility and support.
- Range coverage of 50-130 feet from the hub.
- Amazon Alexa and Google Home voice control.
Samsung is among the most popular and valuable brands on the planet, and they have certainly made a point when it comes to Smart Hubs. There are two versions of SmartThings available in the market, the older version is STH-ETH-001, and the latest version is F-H-ETH-001. On the off chance that you have Smart Things V1, it is about time that you shift to the newer one.
First of all, the newer version has Local Processing which makes it real fast when utilizing some ZigBee and Z-Wave gadgets. SmartThings V2 is surely faster and more consistent; from its responsiveness to its App launch.
The best thing about the V2 of SmartThings is its video capabilities. You can receive live feed of your home through video recording. However, it is a paid service known by Smart Home Monitor. Other than video recording, you can arm or disarm every one of your appliances by using this feature. Smart Things also features two USB ports and a Bluetooth feature which is presently not as good as Wink 2 Hub.
Samsung has done a great job by featuring power back up to keep the device going during power outages. There are 4 AA batteries which last for around 8 – 10 hours.
Comparison between Wink Hub 2 and Samsung SmartThings
In reality, there are many features that the two smart hubs have in common, but they have a few notable differences as well.
The two hubs are to a great degree reliable, flexible and easy to setup. They easily connect and respond quite well to smart gadgets including lights, thermostats, smoke detectors, smart locks, alarms etc. Both hubs have high compatibility with multiple operating systems and various other formats including Z-Wave and Zigbee.
Furthermore, both have quite a similar signal coverage having a range of around 50 to 100 feet.
One of the major differences between the two hubs is the battery backup availability. While Wink Hub 2 only relies on wired power adaptor, SmartThings includes a backup battery that proves to be useful amid power outages.
SmartThings is the best choice for individuals who live in such areas which experience occasional power outages. Be that as it may, there has been a slight perplexity concerning how long the battery of SmartThings can last. While some reviews say that it lasts for 8-10 hours, some have also complained that it lasts for 2 hours only.
Kindly note that only the latest version SmartThings V2 has this feature; the prior version of SmartThings has no battery backup.
Video Capability and USB
Samsung SmartThings has a camera which gives you access to live feeds of your home, hence enhancing the security system. This element proves to be useful as an extraordinary security feature. However, it is only accessible with paid service. Wink does not have this feature, hence giving SmartThings an edge over the security. Other than video, SmartThings additionally accompanies two USB ports that can support cellular modems and other devices.
Ethernet and WiFi Support
The main advantage of Wink 2 over SmartThings v2 is that the first one supports both Ethernet and WiFi connectivity to the home router for Internet access. This means that Wink 2 can be placed anywhere in the house and connect it to your home router (and hence the Internet) over WiFi (Smartthings v3 supports WiFi as well).
Both smart hubs support an extended range of smart devices with some small differences. Wink 2 for example does not support LIFX bulbs. Also, although SmartThings supports less wireless protocols than Wink 2, their huge developer community has created apps and support for custom smart devices as well. Support is also more promptly available on Samsung or SmartThings forums as compared to Wink Hub.
In our Wink Hub 2 Vs Samsung SmartThings comparison the decision is not quite easy to make. Its one of the cases that its hard to find a clear winner.