Apple‘s home automation framework; Apple HomeKit has been gaining popularity recently. Apple HomeKit is a framework that offers an easy solution to complete home automation. But, the framework lacked one important thing i.e an official HomeKit app. The good news is that Apple has finally unveiled an official app for HomeKit called ‘Home’. The app was announced by Apple at the WWDC 16.
The official ‘Home’ app is capable of controlling individual HomeKit accessories. For example, with the app, you can control your smart lock. You can also switch on or off the lights in your room and similarly control various other accessories.
Aside from controlling individual devices the ‘Home’ app also allows you to control accessories that have been grouped into scenes. For Example, if you tap the “Night Time” scene button in the ‘Home’ app then Siri will execute the set of actions that you have grouped in that scenes for particular accessories. You can group various actions along with various accessories in a scene.
For instance, in the Night Time scene, you can group accessories like all lights in your house, smart lock, thermostat, etc. And you can include actions to be executed like ‘Turn off all lights’, ‘Lock the front door’, ‘Lower the temperature’.
With this latest HomeKit ‘Home’ app announcement Apple is trying to make home automation mainstream and easy as soon as possible. The company is striving to make Siri better than its competitor Alexa. Apple also announced HomeKit support for security cameras at the WWDC 16. The security camera support will be offered by the MFi-chip-equipped August Doorbell Cam, and also the upcoming second-generation Kuna products.
Since the automation framework’s release the HomeKit accessory market was only limited to smart plugs, sensors and select other gadgets. With the introduction of security camera support, it looks like the smart accessory market is expanding.
In the Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple also announced that it was going to work on improving voice control. Moreover, the tech giant is also taking a huge step and making Siri available to developers to integrate with third party apps. This will allow users to use Siri to use apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, Facebook, Ali Pay and so much more depending on which app developers decide to work on integrating with Siri. Now Siri will also be able to make payments.
Even with all of these unveiling at the WWDC, HomeKit is still far behind its competitors. Apple’s falling behind in terms of third-party integrations. Apple’s official dedicated app for HomeKit and the expansion of voice control support can allow Apple’s framework to catch up to its competitors.