A blockbuster new partnership between Google and Samsung seeks to challenge Amazon’s IoT dominance with Nest SmartThings support. Meaning that pretty much the entirety of Google’s Nest device portfolio will soon become controllable via the SmartThings app.
Samsung has been actively expanding the SmartThings ecosystem for over half a decade at this point. The platform started out as a Kickstarter success in 2012 and was acquired by the Korean juggernaut two years later. Yet the addition of Google’s smart home gadget portfolio is definitely one of the ecosystem’s most significant milestones to date.
This newly announced move encompasses Nests security cameras, smart doorbells, and connected thermostats, the duo confirmed. Going forward, all of those gadgets will be sold with the catchy WWST label, short for “Works With SmartThings.” That’s on top of their existing “Works With Hey Google” promise of integration.
If you’re unfamiliar with SmartThings, know that Samsung’s connected home app isn’t exclusive to its Galaxy devices. Instead, it’s available on the vast majority of modern smartphones and tablets – including those from Apple. It can also be downloaded to countless smart TVs, voice-enabled speakers, and similar IoT gadgets. This is pretty much the secret of its enormous size which Nest is now adding to.
Even before this blockbuster Google partnership, SmartThings boasted support for over 180 brands and had 63 million active users around the world. And Samsung had been prioritizing this type of brand collaboration over an unconditional pursuit of first-party hardware for the last couple of years.
Could this be a prelude to Samsung embracing even more smart home solutions from Google?
Nest SmartThings support essentially means being able to add Google’s smart home gadgets to Scenes created in Samsung’s app. That includes minor automation scenarios akin to the IFTTT applets. Unlike its key rival, however, SmartThings is entirely free to use. As Samsung derives value from just being the central piece of the contemporary smart home equation.
In other words, your data and money that went into buying compatible devices are its number one priority. It’s extremely unlikely the Seoul-based chaebol tries monetizing SmartThings in more traditional ways anytime soon.
This might also be a prelude to Samsung embracing even more smart home solutions from Google. As a reminder, the two companies have reportedly been negotiating over tighter Google Assistant integrations across Samsung’s vast portfolio throughout the second half of this year.
In any case, Google and Samsung are planning for Nest SmartThings support to go live early next year, i.e. in January. Their collaboration should serve as the most serious challenge to Amazon’s smart home dominance in years. And of course, Nest device integration will only be available via the new SmartThings app. Whereas Samsung still remains in the process of discontinuing SmartThings Classic.