For anyone looking for a simple HomeKit setup that can integrate with SmartThings… check out hoobs.org before Apple sends them a cease and desist.
Is “homebridge” itself illegal? Or “fair use” or some other carved exception?
If not illegal, then perhaps Hoobs isn’t at risk. But seems like a pretty silly business model.
Homebridge itself is not illegal. HOOB is taking open source software and packaging it, and selling it, which is questionable when it’s not funding the code they are “selling”. The part i think that will get them in trouble is that its based off Apples’ IP and they aren’t paying Apple for it. It will be interesting to see how fast their website goes down… though it would be nice to be wrong on this one. Making tech easier for everyone is a good thing.
The aren’t selling the code. You’re well-aware of the terms of the Apache 2.0 License!
Then nfarina (original Homebridge author/publisher) is also at risk. An IP or copyright violation doesn’t is not dependent on whether or not the infringer is profiting from the violation.
The problem with all the homebridge implementations isn’t apple. It’s Phillips.
All the variations of homebridge that I have seen are based on emulating a Phillips hue bridge. And they use Phillips hue code which was released under their developers program license and specifically cannot be modified and re-distributed. It was never open source, it was just an open API. Very different legally.
Apple now specifically allows you to write your own code to access HomeKit, although you are supposed to have a pop-up that says it’s not an officially tested integration if you give it to someone else. I don’t know whether this implementation is doing that or not.
But the main issue is pretending to be a Phillips hue bridge. Maybe since Apple opened up their API the homebridge authors have changed their code to use that instead of the Phillips emulator, I just don’t know.
If you have a Raspberry PI this iOS app is also very good and gets things going with little need to know the Linux CLI:
Homebridge for RaspberryPi - https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/homebridge-for-raspberrypi/id1123183713?mt=8
I use it in conjunction with the HomeBridge SmartApp to integrate my SmartThings devices:
@Guy1992 Thank you for this recommendation. I recently switched to iOS, so I’m just starting down the homebridge path to control ST. Really hoping this might simplify things for me, since I don’t have the time or technical expertise to code everything myself.
Hoping to get started tonight
A friend of mine has been playing around with this. The software is completely free, you can download it from their site, so there are no license issues.
What you are paying for is the hardware and the design and installation of the software on it. That’s an add-on service to the software, so it’s generally legal to charge for that bundle.
So far my friend likes it pretty well, but he says it still not “Homebridge out of the box” Because you still have to cut, paste, and edit the code for the devices you are adding. It will be easier for a lot of people than setting up a pi if they don’t already have a pi, but it’s definitely not mass market in his opinion.