Ecobee and Insteon Announce New HomeKit-Compatible Products

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Following in the footsteps of iHome, Lutron and Elgato, Ecobee and Insteon, two of Apple's other HomeKit partners, are also announcing new HomeKit-compatible products today. Ecobee is announcing a new smart thermostat, while Insteon is introducing the Insteon Hub for adding HomeKit compatibility to Insteon's range of switches, outlets, thermostats, and lightbulbs.

Ecobee's existing thermostat is already sold in Apple's retail stores, and as of July, the company is launching a new version that's compatible with HomeKit. The new WiFi-connected ecobee3 will be one of the first HomeKit-supported thermostat available to consumers, letting temperature be controlled through Siri commands on the iPhone and iPad.

ecobee

"As the first HomeKit-enabled smart thermostat, we couldn't be happier to bring this revolutionary technology to customers," said Stuart Lombard, president and CEO of ecobee. "The new ecobee3 uses wireless remote sensors to deliver the right temperature to the rooms that matter most, and now customers can conveniently control their temperature using Siri on their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, or the ecobee app."

The ecobee3 uses several remote sensors to measure temperature and occupancy in multiple rooms of the house to adjust cooling and heating when a person is home and when away. Like other HomeKit-compatible devices, the ecobee3 can be grouped with other connected-home devices to enable commands like "Siri, I'm going to bed" which will turn down the temperature and turn off the lights.

Insteon's HomeKit-enabled Insteon Hub, first announced at CES, pairs with the new Insteon+ app and connects to Insteon's range of smart home products, from LED bulbs and cameras to wall outlets, keypads, switches, sensors, and more. Insteon has a wide assortment of connected-home products that pair with its Hub, bringing HomeKit compatibility to a wide selection of accessories. Like the company's existing hub, the new hub pairs with almost all of Insteon's products and a few additional products, like the Nest thermostat.

The Insteon+ app is also able to interface with other HomeKit-enabled products, so the Insteon system can potentially be used to control an entire connected home. The app allows users to set up "rooms" and "zones," schedule scenes, and adjust multiple devices at once.

"We're excited to be shipping our HomeKit-enabled Insteon Hub and releasing the Insteon+ mobile app, enabling the mass consumer market to live in a world where all of their connected devices work together in perfect harmony," said Joe Dada, CEO, Insteon. "HomeKit streamlines home automation for consumers, brings together multiple manufacturers and offers advanced features like remote control and voice control through integrations with Siri."

The HomeKit-compatible ecobee3, which includes a thermostat and one sensor, will be available for purchase in Apple retail stores in July for $249. The Insteon Hub will be available for purchase through Amazon.com and Smarthome.com in early July for $149.99.

Top Rated Comments

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67 months ago

Not sure what you mean by phone home (or what concern you're getting at). It's internet connected, but it continues to operate without an internet connection just fine. You'd lose weather data and usage tracking (although I think it buffers that info for a period and then uploads, in case you lose connection for a period of time).

By phone home I mean, does it require a third party server to access the thermostat in order for iPhone remote control? So for example, with Nest, you can change the set temperature from your iPhone, but to do so, you have to log into a server (happens automatically if you want), change the temperature on the iPhone, which then changes the temperature at the server, which then connects to your thermostat and changes its temperature. Therefore, the server has complete control over my thermostat including minute by minute data gathering capability which includes knowing when I am at home and when I am away.

Since this information is gathered and sold by Google, it is an invasion of my privacy and is not worth the value of being able to change the temperature when I am not home.

What I want is the ability to connect the iPhone directly to my thermostat without Google, or anyone else in the middle.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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67 months ago
I own an ecobee 3 and love it. Got it in December 2014, so I am kind of disappointed a new version is out so soon.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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67 months ago

I own an ecobee 3 and love it. Got it in December 2014, so I am kind of disappointed a new version is out so soon.

+1 to this. I don't know the hardware side of things, but is there some reason the current model can't be updated to use HomeKit? Although if it's just Siri control, I can probably live without it . . .
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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67 months ago
Currently own an Ecobee3 and it's great but it sucks that new hardware is required for Homekit, even though I bought my product well after Homekit was announced.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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67 months ago
Being able to control the electric doors on my garage using an Apple Watch would be really cool.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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