Samsung launches next-gen SmartThings Hub with 10-hour backup battery, new iPhone app

SmartThings, Samsung’s answer to Apple’s HomeKit, got some valuable stage time at IFA in Berlin this morning, with the announcement of a brand new SmartThings Hub.

The hardware has been revamped, and no longer needs a connection to the cloud in order to work. What’s more, it’s got a built in backup battery capable of giving you 10 hours use in the event that you have a power cut.  The new Hub is available to order today and was launched alongside a handful of complimentary sensors for tracking water leaks and motion among other things.

Whether you have two smart devices or 200, all you need is one Hub to create a smart home. Like a live-in translator, the Hub communicates with all of your different connected products—regardless of their wireless protocol—so that you can easily monitor and control them from the SmartThings app.

Samsung’s new SmartThings hub has a more powerful processor enabling it to handle video streaming and sensor monitoring tasks without the cloud. With this feature in mind, Sammy also introduced its new Smart Home Monitor which lets users access a continuous vide live-stream and can trigger video recording when something unexpected happens. Only important video is saved for viewing, and early detection enables it to capture the footage before the event.

As well as new hardware, Samsung has released a new app for iPhone today, with an Apple Watch app expected in the near future. You can organize and control your connected devices by room, view live streaming from cameras and manage the routines right from the app. It’s probably worth noting that although the hub itself has a built-in battery capable of keeping it active during power outages, there’s little point to that feature if all the connected products also require power from the mains.

SmartThings is compatible with nearly 200 products, including the Amazon Echo, and devices from manufacturers like Bose, D-Link and Honeywell. It’s unlikely that many Apple owners will be tempted, but just in case there are, the SmartThings hub is available to buy from today for $99 from SmartThings.com or Amazon, with sensors priced between $30-$55.