system debuted last year as Samsung Connect Home. Today, Samsung announced the release of its second-generation mesh system, rebranded under the
umbrella as SmartThings Wifi. Along with new hardware, the company is partnering with Plume, a cloud-based Wi-Fi management system.
Plume works in the background to manage bandwidth, monitoring how much data each device is using and sending, then selecting the most effective band and frequency channel, depending on your needs. You'll also be able to set parental controls, manage device screen time, and set up special passwords for guests.
Plume has its own app, where you can view a detailed analysis in real time and diagnostics for your network. The app isn't necessary, though. Users with the SmartThings app will still have the benefit of a Plume-managed network. Plume is transitioning into a membership-based service, but customers who purchase SmartThings Wifi won't need to worry about membership fees.
Technical specs for processing, memory and speed in the SmartThings Wifi mesh system are identical to the last generation, save for the addition of Plume as a network manager. Here's a look at the numbers:
Like the previous mesh Wi-Fi system from Samsung, SmartThings Wifi comes with a SmartThings hub built in, so you'll save money there, if you're planning to go all-in with a Samsung
. SmartThings Wifi is managed by the Android- and iOS-compatible SmartThings app.
Each SmartThings Wifi router has a range of 1,500 square feet, and you can expand or customize coverage by purchasing individual routers. The system, available today on Samsung's website and at retailers, comes in a one-pack for $120 and a three-pack (enough to support 4,500 square feet) for $280. That's a significant price cut from the original system's three-pack MSRP of $380. Those prices convert to roughly AU$163 and £94 for the one-pack and AU$380 and £218 for the three-pack.
Wi-Fi isn't the only SmartThings product Samsung is updating. Today's announcement also included a new line of SmartThings products, including a wireless SmartThings hub. Last week, Samsung announced the Galaxy Home, a Bixby-powered smart speaker. Can Bixby and the SmartThings ecosystem play catch-up with
, Alexa and Siri? Only time will tell.