Of course, Apple’s tech is by far from the only smart home API doing the rounds. Google Brillo is on its way – although we have precious little tech to shout about. What’s more, Samsung’s SmartThings is also making a play.
Essential reading: Apple HomeKit essential guide
But if you’re an existing Apple user who wants to buy into the HomeKit smart home revolution then it can be a little hard to find which companies have opted in, and which have not. HomeKit enabled accessories and devices are can be sold with a “Works with Apple HomeKit” badge which helps. Otherwise, check out our list of the biggest names to sign up – and we’ll keep things updated as time goes on.
Philips Hue Lighting Bridge 2.0
Why would you want purple lighting in the bedroom and fuschia in the living room? Because you can, of course. Colours and brightness can now be controlled within the Apple ecosystem through Siri and if you’re an existing Hue user it’s simple to port all the info needed from your old bridge. If you’re new to the game, there is a white and colour ambiance starter kit (also HomeKit friendly) containing the bridge and three A19 bulbs.
Honeywell Lyric smart thermostat
Honeywell announced a new version of its smart thermostat at CES 2016. The new $249 Lyric is identical to previous models but adds HomeKit support – you can set the temperature from your iPhone, get alerts when it needs maintenance and there’s geofencing so the Lyric will know when you enter and leave your house.
These types of functions can be integrated with other HomeKit devices and the smart thermostat is compatible with Samsung’s SmartThings too. This is your answer if you like the look of Nest but you’re sure you want a HomeKit home.
Lutron Serena window blinds
As well as Lutron’s Caseta smart bulb starter kit, you can also now get HomeKit compatible smart window blinds. The wireless blinds can be remote controlled via Siri on your iPhone and iPad and are available in a variety of shades and textures. The battery powered shades can be set to desired levels when you say “Good morning” or “Good night” and Lutron says they will last up to 5 years. Very Tony Stark.
Hunter Symphony and Signal ceiling fans
CES also saw the news that Hunter’s new Wi-Fi enabled Symphony and Signal ceiling fans will work with Apple HomeKit. That means Siri control, as ever, and integration with other HomeKit products including creating scenes for fans and smart bulbs as you move from room to room in your house or get ready for bed.
The reason Insteon’s HomeKit Hub caught our eye is that it allows users to hook up their Sonos multiroom system to Siri controls via the Insteon Hub app for iPhone/iPad or by Insteon’s wireless remotes, with pre-printed Sonos buttons and wall keypads which you can assign to things like volume up or skip track. Sonos can also join in with custom lighting scenes. Very nice.
Chamberlain MyQ Garage Opener
You don’t need a Chamberlain system pre-installed, just choose what you already have from the MyQ app and you will be able to centralise everything to your phone. Coming later in 2016, the MyQ is always on guard and will send you an alert if your garage door is opening without your knowledge, or if you forgot to close it when you were running late for work.
Elgato Eve Home Monitoring
Knowing your home isn’t just about how to get that toilet flush with the ‘knack’ to work. Nothing escapes the attention of the Elgato Eve range, which consists of four separate sensors (room, weather, energy, door and window) that will grant you immediate access to your house’s humidity levels, air quality, and temperature – and even the air pressure outside.
Mixing internal surveillance with environmental and sound monitors to detect air quality and unhappy babies, the Withings Home is one smart HomeKit connected camera. The biggest feature is the HD camera that will detect motion and notify your smartphone if you’re out – allowing you to access the wide-angle zoom and night vision to see exactly what’s going on. It does look like a plant pot/air freshener hybrid and the uninitiated are unlikely to give it a second look – which is the idea.
Tado Smart AC Control
This infrared unit from the German techpreneurs began life on Kickstarter and is now on the market. As long as your established air con is remote controlled, the Tado can link up with it and throw the data to an iPhone or Android app. One of the standout features is that it’s geo-location aware, so it can be set to turn off and on as you leave and return home. Tado has confirmed it will be HomeKit ‘ready’ from 2016.
August Home Access Kit
Heralding an end to the dreaded ‘while you were out’ calling card, this motion detecting one-way camera will send an alert to your phone that some one is standing at your door and you can even chat with them through the one-way HD camera. Working in unison with the Smart Keypad you can also assign unique auto-generated codes for single use, like a plumber’s appointment; or more regular usage like friends or family who are coming to stay.Currently, US only.
Tado Smart Thermostat V2
This smart heating unit for the European market offers a constantly monitored temperature at home, which will turn the degrees down, or turn itself off, once the last person leaves. Similarly, it will learn quickly just how cosy you want your rooms to be before you put your virtual key in the door. This, the company claims, will save you up to 31% on your heating bill, annually. So it should pay for itself after a couple of winters at work on your wall. The unit becomes HomeKit compatible in the first half of next year.
You’re going to need a little bit more effort in to set up this thermostat from the Canadian home automation company because it comes complete with a number of remote sensors that fulfils the product’s ‘Follow Me’ option. If they detect motion, the thermostat will take a temperature reading from that room and decide if it needs cooling down or warming up, according to your heating history since installation. Currently, US only.
Incipio CommandKit Wireless Smart Outlet
There are a lot of smart plugs looking to forge an alliance with Apple’s home framework, but leading the charge in the US is this from the Southern Californian outfit. Any home appliance that’s plugged into it will become instantly smart and once it’s sandwiched between your home’s WiFi network and the CommandKit App you can then use voice commands to boss it around. “Turn the fan on in the kids room.” Or, “Turn the fan on in the kids room, please.” Depending on your relationship with Siri.
iDevices Outdoor Switch
Your friends might be on top of home automation behind closed doors but what about outside? This is the first rain-tight smart plug to give options for those who want to have Siri-contolled lights this Christmas, or maybe get the outdoor party started while still plating up in the kitchen. Plug it into the energy sapping 8-foot high Santa in the garden and you’ll never have to worry about being bankrupted if you forget to turn him off when you’re away from home. Currently, only available in the US.