HomeKit Overview Updated September 5, 2019

HomeKit

Your home at your command.

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436 'HomeKit' stories

June 2014 - September 2019


What is HomeKit / Apple Home?

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.

In 2018, Apple released the HomePod. It was a way to interact with your connected home devices through Siri using a standalone device.

How Do You Use HomeKit?

HomeKit devices can be controlled from iPad, iPhone, Mac, Apple Watch, and HomePod. A 4th generation Apple TV (or newer) is an essential Apple smart home device as it acts as a bridge over iCloud to allow access to your devices when away from home.

9to5Mac’s Zac Hall does a regular column about the “Apple Home” lifestyle in his HomeKit Weekly column.

Popular HomeKit Devices

HomeKit Stories September 5

Longtime HomeKit accessory maker Eve Systems today announced a handful of updates to its smart home range. The Eve Extend is finally shipping and available to buy, allowing Eve users to connect its Bluetooth accessories to the full range of your home Wi-Fi network.

Eve also unveiled Eve Water Guard, a smart water detector coming next year, and enhancements to its Eve Thermo smart radiator valve. The company is also debuting an EU version of its Eve Light Switch, launching in countries beyond the US this October.

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Signify, the Philips subsidiary behind Hue lighting, has announced a new Philips Hue Filament collection, as well as a new Smart Plug and Smart Button, a revised portable Hue Go, and more. Read on for all of the details on today’s Philips Hue announcements.

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HomeKit Stories August 27

Yeelight HomeKit support has finally landed, after what the company says is eight months of work.

Even better, there’s a firmware update available for three existing products that will retroactively add HomeKit support…

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HomeKit Stories August 20

Apple is upgrading HomeKit this fall with new features like Secure Video and expanded automation, but it’s not all good news for Apple’s smart home framework. The Home app where users manage the smart home experience makes one design choice that is likely meant to make it more approachable. In practice, the change degrades the experience for a whole category of HomeKit products.

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IKEA’s affordable smart blinds won’t support HomeKit at launch after all

On Friday, a video emerged offering our closest look yet at IKEA’s long-awaited smart blinds. Throughout the entire launch process, IKEA has said the blinds would support HomeKit through its TRÅDFRI hub, but now the company says HomeKit won’t be supported at launch.

Theoretically, HomeKit supports fans as a smart home accessory. There are some HomeKit ceiling fans already on sale, but what I’ve been holding out for is a HomeKit tower fan for my office. Unfortunately, there aren’t really any to speak of.

After years of waiting, and a particularly hot summer, I gave up and explored the enthusiast route. I bought a standard fan with an IR remote control and set out to induct it into my HomeKit home using Homebridge…

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