The idea of a smart home is a long running meme in technological circles. Apple has made the biggest stride recently with HomeKit and there is now a significant ecosystem of lights, switches, and other accessories to buy for your home. That being said, smart home accessories are still novelties and quite pricey: they aren’t must-have purchases. However, this makes them great gifts for the holiday season — uncommon presents that are fun to play with and have some long-lasting usefulness. We’ve rounded up our favorite HomeKit accessories below …
smart home November 27
smart home October 14
Apple’s HomeKit platform for connected accessories around the house has been steadily expanding over the last few months, and today August is adding to it with a new version of its Smart Lock. Revealed today, the new HomeKit-enabled August Smart Lock is an upgraded version of the Bluetooth-connected door lock that first launched last year. HomeKit compatibility means you can use the Siri virtual assistant on iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch to lock or unlock August Smart Lock using voice commands. Working with Apple’s smart home platform also means Smart Lock can be a part of commands like “Goodnight” that turn off connected lights, lock the front door, and lower the temperature. expand full story
smart home October 1
Nest Weave, the communications protocol that Nest uses to make its connected home devices talk to each other, definitely isn’t new. But as of today, Nest is making it part of its Works with Nest program so that third-party hardware makers and developers can use the protocol in their own products… expand full story
smart home September 28
smart home August 25
While the iPhone app is a great way to control your Philips Hue lighting, there are times when a good old-fashioned button is more convenient – especially for the less techy members of your household. Philips already offers the Hue Tap, but that’s a little clunky and designed for wall-mounting only. Its new Philips Hue Wireless Dimming Kit is much sleeker, and is designed so that you can wall-mount it or use it as a handheld remote.
The dimmer can control up to 10 Hue bulbs at once, with Philips promising that the dimming will be smooth, flicker-free and buzz-free. The company also says the firmware can be upgraded for HomeKit compatibility when Philips adds its hub device in the fall … expand full story
smart home July 22
If you were wondering why manufacturers seemed to be rather slow in launching HomeKit-compatible devices, it may all be down to Apple’s stringent security requirements. Forbes reports that manufacturers are finding it hard to incorporate the extremely secure encryption standards demanded by Apple in order to achieve MFi certification for their products.
Apple is requiring device makers using both WiFi and Bluetooth LE to use complicated encryption with 3072-bit keys, as well as the super secure Curve25519, which is an elliptic curve used for digital signatures and exchanging encrypted keys.
While mains-powered WiFi kit is coping, the processing workload in battery-powered Bluetooth LE devices is leading to extremely slow response times, say manufacturers … expand full story