Apple HomeKit-enabled Smart Devices

This thread is for products which have already announced they will support Apple Homekit technology.

Ecobee just announced itself to be the world’s first smart thermostat to support it.
They are also offering 20$ off for now till June 21.

Update: This may be confusing though. The newer ecobee3 (yet to be launched) which will hit the market will have the support. This will be very disappointing if the older ones do not have an upgrade path.

BTW, this is what they have to say:

“We are working on an upgrade path for current ecobee3 customers. In the meantime, your understanding is correct that due to hardware requirements from Apple, the current version of ecobee3 us not upgradeable to be compatible with HomeKit. Unfortunately it is not as simple as a firmware upgrade from our end.”

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Lutron, iHome, and Elgato have announced a few devices, mostly smart plugs and dimmers. Elgato announced air quality sensors and a few others.

Freaking pre orders, one and all. Nothing actually shipping yet.

That said: the Lutron announcement is stunning. Seriously. This will give Siri control to both the Caseta line of light switches and some of their window coverings. I suspect this may also work with Staples Connect very soon, as they already support the same Lutron models. For those willing to spend the money, Lutron refuses to be left behind. And this demonstrates how a HomeKit bridge will work with existing devices. (Doesn’t mean Apple will approve any old bridge, though. They’ve already said no bridged doorlocks.)

Plus, as usual, Lutron has great documentation, and their bridge manual has a ton of stuff on exactly how HomeKit zones work:

As to the Ecobee announcement: HomeKit has a required hardware chip for security reasons. But Lutron just demonstrated how to retrofit: build a bridge. Ecobee could probably do the same although, yeah, I’m guessing each bridge will retail around $150. Justifiable if it’s one bridge to a houseful of light switches and window coverings. For a thermostat, maybe not so much.

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And a couple of notes on Siri (Apple HomeKit) vs Alexa (Amazon Echo) for voice control of home automation, based on the Lutron bridge docs:

score one for Siri:

e. “Are there any lights on?”, and Siri will tell you if you’ve left any lights on.
f. “What’s the level of the lights in the kitchen?”, and Siri will tell you what the light level is.

But at least when compared to Lutron, Alexa can turn individual lights on and off by name, while Siri can only control the room. (A bridge limitation? Or just a Lutron one?)

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When ST will get on to home kit ship?

Obviously this should be SmartThings’s solution as well… Is the “chip” and any required license expensive? Could it be packaged as a USB dongle for Hub V2?

For hub v2 maybe. if the hub already has Wi-Fi connectivity. If not, I’m not sure how everything will work.

As for costs, the chip is pretty expensive as chips go. License costs for MFI have dropped, so they’re now around $5 per unit, rather than the original 10%.

A bigger problem may be the Suppliers Code of Conduct. For example, Apple limits factory workers to 60 hour workweeks (even with double overtime). And they have to allow Apple auditors in to the plants. Not all companies want to adhere to that.

http://www.apple.com/supplier-responsibility/accountability/

Insteon is available on Amazon. Ships in 6 to 10 days. That’s way better than Apple Watch. :smile:

Hats off to Insteon! Kind of makes me jealous I went with Z-Wave instead of Insteon.

Oh, and BTW, turns out your estimate of HK-compatible devices hitting the shelves in mid-2016 was a bit conservative. But that’s a good thing. :smile:

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@geko finally out of the caves… Looks like he loves Apples! Welcome back, my friend! Wonder what @wackware has to say about all this. He has gone AWOL.

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My guess for mid 2016 wasn’t for first HomeKit devices.

Rather it was that by summer 2016 there will be several (not just HomeKit) full systems (not just a few devices) for reliable plug and play home automation with some voice control under $3500. That will mean lighting, door lock, garage door controller, motion sensors, contact sensors, moisture sensors, and some kind of A/V integration.

Obviously HomeKit/Insteon will be one contender, but I do expect there to be several more in a year, with Samsung/SmartThings probably being another.

I’m not trying to be a first adopter here. :blush:

edited to update It’s clear my Summer 2016 target date was way too optimistic. HomeKit has moved much more slowly than I expected, and consequently there has been less pressure on competitors. The earliest I now expect to see multiple plug and play systems under $5,000 is summer 2017, and I expect them to fall into two categories: Full feature systems like SmartThings and limited feature systems such as I expect HomeKit will now be.

Limited feature Systems will only work with a few specific devices and may be limited to lights, locks, HVAC, cameras, and probably garage doors. But very few sensors other than those built into other devices like motion sensors built into security cameras. The limited feature systems will basically be a smarter thermostat, a smarter lightbulb, etc. that will replace your existing dumb devices, but you won’t buy devices in categories that you didn’t already have. (Even a voice controller like Echo or Google Home could be considered a smarter music player.)

In contrast, full-featured systems will add several different kinds of sensors, a hub, maybe some relays – – devices that you only need in order to make the automations work.

For my own needs, a limited feature system will probably be sufficient. But many community members will certainly look for full-featured systems.

So I do still think HomeKit will put market pressure on all the home automation manufacturers, but I also think that once iOS 10 is out the market will split into very distinct categories.

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I used to toiled in the orchard, but now I’m free. :smile:

Anyway, I do believe that for any home automation to succeed, it needs two things - painless, no-fuss integration and voice control. It looks like Apple finally nailed it, while SmartThings has neither and won’t have it in the foreseeable future, regrettably. From the usability standpoint, voice control is going to be like touchscreen in smartphones a decade ago. Those who don’t get it will follow the suit of Blackberry.

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The “unofficial” stuff a few of us have working with Amazon Echo definitely demonstrates how wonderful the potential is.

I don’t have experience with Siri, just Google Now, and find that Echo’s voice-speech recognition is extremely fast and accurate. Using it just for lights on and off (and now extending for dimming, and simple enough, Hello Home, …) is much easier than waiting for phone to wake up.

More Echo Dev experiments coming.

In short: This is an excellent opportunity for SmartThings to “catch up” with this Siri lady, even if if through a different approach (i.e., via the Echo appliance instead of phone). So far we haven’t seen ST leap at such opportunities though, right?

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Both true, and another reason my personal expectation is that a year from now there will be multiple awesome options. :blush: :microphone:

SmartThings showed an early interest in voice with the official Samsung Gear S app.

No idea what, if anything, they’ll do over the next year, but Echo is definitely a gateway drug to HA voice control. :wink: The demand will be there.

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Some of my friends are already selling their Nests and ready to scrap ST to jump ship to Homekit enabled devices. My advice to them was wait to see how good it is, how the market plays out, etc. It’s still too early to make rush decisions and rip out what you have. In theory, Homekit sounds great if your an iOS user, but it all has to work well. We all know Siri to this day still has it’s challenges and to me that is key to Homekit’s success.

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The problem with SmartThings is that they lack focus and strategy. Look how many projects they started over the last two years and none has ever reached production quality. Everything is either left half-baked or was totally abandoned. It’s a corporate ADD. It looks more likely to me that Amazon Echo will evolve into a home automation platform of its own sooner than SmartThings will gain native voice control. Sorry to say, but my feeling is that SmartThings will become irrelevant pretty soon.

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Alexa can understand my accent much much better than Siri.

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Which projects are you referring to??

There have been a few ideas discussed here and there, and most of them are in progress, as far as the ones that I have in my mind…

It’s been almost a year since the acquisition by Samsung. What does ST has to show for it other than whoknowswhentobereleased hub V2? Has anything came out of “ST Labs” within this year? Most third-party integrations - Hue, Sonos, Nest, Foscam, etc. are in the same sorry state they were a year ago. Mobile app still sucks, if not more. They teased us for a while with new UI, some kind of rules engine, scenes and what not, but even that talk has died out. Novelty and excitement has worn off, at least for me. What good does the open API do if goddamned scheduling still does not work reliably? Sorry, it just ticks me off when I hear about ST’s “great potential” and “growing pains” again. The pain is there, for sure. Grows? Not so much. :smile:

If Insteon can demonstrate solid integration with HomeKit, I will seriously consider dumping ZWave and switching to Insteon, unless someone follows their lead and do the same for ZWave, which is I’m sure will happen sooner rather then later.

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I am with you. I have invested a lot of time into ST and would be willing to replace it if something better came along that supports Zigbee, Zwave and Homekit. I am not willing to replace all of my physical Zwave switches though, too much of a pain and too costly. My integrations include Somfy, Harmony, MyQ, IFTTT, Sonos and Hue as well. Unfortunately now, nothing comes close to supporting all of this so I am stuck with ST.

That makes sense. I think those who have wired zwave light switches and window covering controls will be the least likely to think about switching. As you say, that adds up to a lot of time, money, and effort fast.

Meanwhile: new pages added to Apple’s site with some bits of information.

  1. Apple TV will be used as the Siri connector when your phone is away from home and you still want to speak your commands. (Rumored for months, this is the first official confirmation.)

  2. you cannot use Siri to unlock doors. Full stop. Not a bridge issue. (This is new, but makes sense. From a security standpoint, letting a listener device unlock a door gives you zero security. People will still want proximity unlocking when their phone gets close, just not sure how that fits into HomeKit now.)

  3. there’s a page listing HomeKit devices:

(The Withings camera isn’t on the list!

A friend of mine who is working with an accessory manufacturer says that the issue is probably the ID code on the “works with home kit” “badge” which has to be unique or the device cannot be paired to a homekit network. Early adopters like WiThings didn’t yet have their badge numbers. He’s not sure what will happen with items that people already own.)

  1. there’s no “hub” but there is a very simple join/exclude process. An iOS device is owned by a “master” Apple ID. Each accessory has an ID number on it. Enter that ID into an app and now that master Apple ID owns that device for HomeKit purposes. That Apple ID must release that device before it can be joined to another HomeKit network. You sign into Apple TV with the master Apple ID in order to give it control privileges.

According to the Insteon docs, the master ID can invite other Apple IDs to be guests so they can use Siri to turn things on and off.

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