HomeKit Overview Updated April 26, 2018


Apple's home automation framework and platform

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273 'HomeKit' stories

June 2014 - April 2018

Along with several other new APIs for developers, Apple announced HomeKit in June 2014 which allows all home automation accessories/devices to work together in harmony with iOS. The new API will allow home automation developers to centralize all home automation without needing separate apps to access each device’s specific features. These devices include locks, lights, cameras, doors, thermostats, plugs, switches, and more.

HomeKit allows for secure pairing with devices and the ability to control individual devices. It also makes it possible to group several home automation devices into scenes that allow for easier control of any automation device in specific situations. One of the coolest features available with HomeKit is the ability to control any home automation accessory with Siri based on certain commands or scenes previously configured with these devices.

In 2016, Apple introduced a new Home app which comes with a modern look, relatively easy-to-use controls, and access to accessories and scenes from anywhere on iOS 10. Apple’s new built-in Home app on the iPhone’s Home screen, plus you can access a ton of functions from the lock screen or anywhere on iOS from the new Control Center (a swipe up from the bottom of the screen) once you have a HomeKit accessory set up.

Check out our hands-on to see Apple’s Home app for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch in action.

HomeKit Stories Today

Four more HomeKit-compatible air conditioners now available from GE

We learned a few days ago about the launch of the first US HomeKit-compatible air conditioner, and GE says that there are now four other models with HomeKit support, making five in all …

HomeKit Stories April 24

Philips Hue isn’t just a line of smart bulbs — the collection also includes a variety of complete smart lighting solutions including table lamps. Hue Go is a popular option with its portable design, while Hue Wellner trades portability for a larger and interesting design…

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HomeKit Stories April 23

GE now shipping first Siri-controlled window air conditioner, works with HomeKit and Amazon Alexa

After being announced some time ago, GE’s HomeKit compatible window air conditioner is now available for purchase. The 8,000 BTU, Energy Star rated unit also works with Alexa, Google Home products, and IFTTT in addition to Apple’s HomeKit.

HomeKit Stories April 20

Zac wrote a really helpful piece earlier this week about a HomeKit feature that had somehow entirely passed me by: the ability to customize your light icons.

The default icon for all lights is a lightbulb. But HomeKit offers you the ability to choose between four icons:

  • Lightbulb
  • Floor lamp
  • Ceiling light
  • Desk lamp

Zac mentioned that it would be useful to have more options, and I wanted to give this greater visibility by making it a feature request …

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Sylvania HomeKit Light Strip

HomeKit Stories April 17

HomeKit lights maker Lutron buys Texas-based Ketra smart LED company

Popular HomeKit accessory maker Lutron has acquired smart LED company Ketra. The announcement was made via a press release today, with Lutron touting the acquisition as a “natural extension” of its existing smart accessory efforts…

Smart home company Abode promises summer release of Iota HomeKit security system following acquisition

The Iota gateway was billed at a DIY HomeKit security system when it was first introduced at 2018’s CES in Las Vegas. We brought you news of the product’s introduction in January, where manufacturer Abode Systems set a target shipping date of late Q1. Today, the company has announced that is has received a majority stake investment from home automation brand Nice S.p.A. and will continue developing HomeKit products. 

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