SmartThings vs. Insteon: What’s the Difference?

Smartthings vs. Insteon

If you’re stuck choosing between SmartThings vs. Insteon, our guide will go over the differences between the two and hopefully help you make the choice that’s right for you.

As home automation becomes more popular, there are more and more companies offering smart home products. The competition is unreal and, as a result, a lot of customers are getting lost in the choices. And because of the rapid growth of technology, some companies just can’t compete anymore and have to step out of race: Revolv is a perfect example. The hub didn’t look good to begin with, but the company had thousands of customers who were pretty unhappy to learn that as of May 15th 2016, the Revolv Hub would no longer be functional — and after years of use!

So, once you’ve started looking into home automation, it seems like the most important thing to do would be to analyze the company’s position. But, when we talk about SmartThings vs. Insteon, the two companies have been on a market for more than 10 years and seem pretty steady. However, as is the problem in this new smart home market, you never know when the next giant company might just go under and leave customers with useless devices.

But, let’s talk about positive things, like the differences between two great devices!

SmartThings vs. Insteon —The Differences

  • Difference # 1: Drapery control – Insteon offers Somfy RF Drape Control Kit which allows you to remotely control blinds, drapes, and other window coverings. It goes without saying that the window coverings must be powered by Somfy RTS and/or Inteo Motors.

    SmartThings, on the contrary, doesn’t have this feature. So, depending how far you want to go with your home automation, you can make the right decision choosing between the two systems.

  • Difference # 2: Adjustable ramp rates for dimmers – This difference also goes in favor of Insteon. Basically, with the Insteon Dimmer you can program the level of light you want and choose the speed you want the lights to fade on/off.

    You can’t do the same stuff with SmartThing Dimmers. It’s a somewhat minor thing, so if you don’t really care at which speed your dimmer will fade on/off lights, then you can just forget about this difference.

  • Difference # 3: Technology – As you’ve noticed, different home automation systems use different technology to operate, that directly influence their compatibility with other products. SmartThings is using WiFi, ZigBee, and Z-Wave, whereas Insteon uses… Insteon technology.

    As a result, if you use, let’s say, WeMo Crock Pot, you’ll have no problem controlling it with SmartThings Hub, whereas you can’t say the same about Insteon. However, there is a way out, you won’t have total control of your crock pot with Insteon, but, if you install an Insteon On/Off Outlet, you’ll be able just to turn off the crock pot whenever you want by turning off the outlet where the crock pot is plugged in. Not the best way, but kind of works. You can check more compatibility features in the chart below.

    Find more about WeMo crock pot in WeMo Crock Pot Slow Cooker Review: The Good and the Bad

SmartThings vs. Insteon — Comparison Table

Features:InsteonSmartThings
Climate controlYesYes
Drapery controlYesYes
On/Off wall switchYesYes
Energy monitoringYesYes
LED bulbsYesYes
Dimming wall switchYesYes
Motion sensorYesYes
Dimming plug-in moduleYesYes
Low voltage & custom devicesYesYes
Water leak sensorYesYes
Smoke and CO detectionYesYes
Adjustable ramp rates for dimmersYesNo
IOS AppYesYes
Android AppYesYes
Windows Phone AppYesYes
APIYesYes

SmartThings vs. Insteon — Compatibility Chart

Since SmartThings and Insteon are using different technology to operate, their compatibility with other smart products vary greatly. A lot of people already have a few smart home appliances in their homes, therefore the choice between SmartThings vs. Insteon might get tougher.

Smart devices:InsteonSmartThings
Samsung SmartCam HD ProNoYes
Nest ThermostatYesNo
Honeywell Lyric ThermostatNoYes
Philips HueNoYes
LevitonNoYes

Since SmartThings is compatible with a huge variety of products, we kept our list short, but you can check the full list of SmartThings compatible products here.

SmartThings vs. Insteon — The Bottom Line

Needless to say, it’s a tough choice. But, honestly, it all comes to each person’s preference. Both SmartThings and Insteon are great and it all just depends on which smart products you already have or wish to purchase. We’d say that compatibility is the main issue that customers have. So, when choosing between the two, make sure you select the one which lets all your appliances stay connected.


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