I apologize up-front as this is going to be a bit long winded. It also involved HomeKit, which I know isn’t supported by ST. However, I’m trying to figure out the logistics in getting HomeKit to work with my lighting AND smartthings, separtely.
I’ve been into HA for about a year now, primarily using SmartThings and Z-Wave/ZigBee. I’m totally invested in the Apple EcoSystem, so being I was buying Hue Lights, I figured I’d give HomeKit a whirl. It took me a bit to understand how to configure your HomeKit Rooms/Zones, etc since you have to use Third Party apps and cannot do it via the Hue App or a Native Apple App.
With that said, my setup will be primarily using the SmartThings Hub v2 (I know it doesn’t support homekit). However, being my Hue Hub does have HomeKit, I’d like to integrate that as well.
I successfully have two rooms setup - Living Room and Dining Room. The Dining Room has a few bulbs in a fixture assigned to it and the Living Room has a single lamp. All seems to be working fine thus far. I tell Siri to turn on/off my Dining Room lights and magically, they listen!
However, since I’be been researching, tinkering and installing HA systems for about a year for Friends and Family, I know a few “Gotchas”:
The lights should be controlled via a Smart Connected Light Switch rather than controlling the individual bulbs for On/Off functionality. At some point, someone will use the light switch (guests, etc) while passing by. Therefore a Smart Light Switch ensures I never lose remote control over the lighting.
With that said, I’m trying to figure out what Light Switch to use in my dining room that will allow local control of the lights but will also always allow Siri/HomeKit to be able to control the lights. From the looks of it, I can only see one, maybe two options.
Option 1: Remove the current dumb switch completely and hardwire the lines. This will always keep the circuit on. Then, I use the Phillips Hue Dimmer switch to control the lights. This would be controlling the bulbs rather than the circuit, but it would allow Siri to always work and should allow ST to keep control as well due to Hue Integration.
Option 2: The only light switch that I see which is HomeKit and ST compatible is the Belkin WeMo. so I could swap my switch with this; I think. I’m assuming since it’s HK compatible, I would be able to manually turn off the switch AND still be able to use Siri to turn the circuit on. [EDIT: I may be wrong. I saw the WeMo listed on Apple’s site as compatible but I see nothing about HomeKit?. Plus, I’m assuming I’d need their bridge].
What would you do in this instance? Are there any other options? Is it dangerous to have the circuit always on for the lights? I’m guessing not since outlets are always on, but I want to be sure!