iOS 13 Includes Updated Home Interface, Support for AirPlay 2 Devices in Automations

In iOS 13, the Home app has received a few notable updates that will make it easier than ever to control and identify your HomeKit devices.

The main Home app screens are the same in iOS 13, but the control options for specific ‌HomeKit‌ devices have been revamped and streamlined. Available controls vary by device, but in general, the change makes options you check or use frequently (such as various light colors) easier to access.

homeaccessoriesios13
With ‌HomeKit‌ lights, for example, there's a main display with brightness controls front and center (as it was before), but now, if lights have multiple colors, you'll see a selection of favorites at the bottom rather than having to tap on the color button at the bottom. Settings have also been hidden away a bit and are now accessible from the corner.

Small changes like these have been made for all device types, putting the information that you need at the forefront. There are also several new icons for different ‌HomeKit‌ types such as water sensors, motion sensors, and air quality sensors, making it easier to identify what's what at a glance.

homekitnewaccessoryicons
Certain devices, such as the Hue Motion Sensor, will display more information in one place rather than splitting up information. In iOS 12, for example, there are separate ‌HomeKit‌ entries for the motion sensing portion of the Hue sensor, the light measurement, and the temperature measurement, which is confusing and clutters up your Home app. In iOS 13, these are all combined into one.

homekitios13combinedaccessoryfunctions
Controls for your ‌HomeKit‌ devices are also now shown in a card-style view so you can swipe them away to get back to the main Home app screen, which is an improvement over the full screen view in iOS 12.

Notably, your AirPlay 2 devices can be used in ‌HomeKit‌ Scenes and Automations for the first time in iOS 13, a major change from what's possible in iOS 12.

airplay2scenes
With automations support, your ‌AirPlay‌ 2 devices like the HomePod can be set to do things like play music when you arrive home, or turn off when you leave. You can also have music come on when a ‌HomeKit‌ sensor detects something like motion, or at a specific time of day.

In scenes, ‌HomePod‌ and other ‌AirPlay‌ 2 devices can be paired with other ‌HomeKit‌ devices, so you can do something like have your ‌HomePod‌ and lights come on all with one button press or Siri command.

homekitdevicescenes
Controls for speakers in Scenes and Automations include Play Audio, Pause Audio, Resume Audio, Don't Change What's Playing, Use Current Volume, and Set Custom Volume.

homekitsceneautomationoptions
These new controls for ‌AirPlay‌ 2 devices will apply to everything from ‌HomePod‌ and Apple TV to HomeKit-enabled third-party TV sets and speakers, providing new ways to integrate audio devices into your home.

Apple also announced other HomeKit-related changes that are worth noting. In-home security cameras are becoming increasingly important, but these introduce privacy concerns related to unauthorized access. Apple has a solution -- a new Secure Video feature.

Secure Video is a new ‌HomeKit‌ API that offers on-device video analysis, sending an encrypted stream to iCloud, so you can be sure that no one is spying on your in-home security cameras. Companies like Logitech and Arlo plan to release cameras that use this technology.

Apple is also adding ‌HomeKit‌ support to routers from companies like Linksys, Eero, and Charter/Spectrum for the first time in iOS 13. With ‌HomeKit‌ controls, users will be able to prevent accessories from accessing their entire home networks.

homekit routers
All of these ‌HomeKit‌ and Home app features will be available in iOS 13, which is limited to developers right now. Apple plans to release a public beta in July, and the software will see an official launch in the fall.

Top Rated Comments

imola.zhp Avatar
23 months ago
I sure hope Apple Routers will gain that special Homekit support. Some of us are still using them...
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DaneDeasy Avatar
23 months ago
Please tell me there are more styles included for the light icons!
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nimoy Avatar
23 months ago
I've been waiting for HomePod integration into automatons and scenes since day one. So many possibilities! Kind of funny how they buried this news in the keynote—it shows just how packed WWDC was with new features.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chfilm Avatar
23 months ago
I was sooooo waiting for AirPlay 2 implementation! Great!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RomanEmpire Avatar
23 months ago
Does this mean, I can finally turn my Apple TV (and my connected TV) on and off with scenes? e.g. when I leave, my TV turns off?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gaximus Avatar
23 months ago
I have most of my house running on HomeKit, but the one thing I really really want is to be able to turn off my AppleTV via HomeKit. I can turn it on, but not off.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

microsoft edge ios android

Bill Gates Says His Preference for Android Over iPhone is Due to Pre-Installed Software

Friday February 26, 2021 3:35 am PST by
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates this week participated in his first meeting on Clubhouse, the increasingly popular invite-only conversation app, where he fielded a range of questions as part of an ongoing book tour. Gates was interviewed by journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin, and given that the Clubhouse app is currently only available on iOS, naturally one of the questions that came up was...
First Look Big Sur Feature2

Apple Releases macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 to Prevent MacBooks From Being Damaged by Third-Party Non-Compliant Docks

Thursday February 25, 2021 10:07 am PST by
Apple today released macOS Big Sur 11.2.2, the fourth update to the macOS Big Sur operating system that launched in November. macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 comes two weeks after the release of macOS Big Sur 11.2.1, a bug fix update. The new ‌‌‌‌macOS Big Sur‌‌‌ 11.2.2‌ update can be downloaded for free on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System Preferences....
flat mbp 14 inch feature yellow

Redesigned 14-Inch MacBook Pro Expected to Feature Brighter Mini-LED Display With Slimmer Bezels and More

Thursday February 25, 2021 7:48 am PST by
Apple plans to unveil new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with Mini-LED-backlit displays in the second half of this year, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report claims that Radiant Opto-Electronics will be the exclusive supplier of the Mini-LED backlight units, while Quanta Computer is said to be tasked with final assembly of the...
Top Stories 47 Feature copy

Top Stories: MacBook Pro, iMac, and AirPods Rumors, macOS 11.2.2, MagSafe Wallet Revisited

Saturday February 27, 2021 6:00 am PST by
March is right around the corner, and that means our first good opportunity for Apple product launches in 2021 as the company frequently has significant launches in March or April each year. We're hearing rumors about MacBook Pro, iMac, AirPods, and more, although many of these will be coming out at different times over the course of the year. This week also saw a macOS update to address a ...
maxresdefault

HomeKit Essentials Worth Checking Out

Saturday February 27, 2021 7:05 am PST by
HomeKit was slow to take off after its 2014 launch, but now that it's been around for seven years, there are hundreds of HomeKit products available, ranging from doorbells and speakers to TVs, lights, and cameras. In our latest YouTube video, we rounded up some of our favorite HomeKit products that we find most useful. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. HomePod...
apple store macarthur center

Apple Store at MacArthur Center in Virginia Permanently Closing Following Years of Safety Issues at Shopping Mall

Thursday February 25, 2021 4:45 pm PST by
Apple today indicated that its retail store at the MacArthur Center shopping mall in Norfolk, Virginia will be permanently closing after over 14 years of business, although an exact closure date has yet to be announced by the company. Apple has assured that it will be offering all employees at the store other positions within Apple, and said that it looks forward to continuing to serve...
jon prosser imac 2021colors

Prosser: 2021 iMac to Come in Five Colors, Apple Silicon Mac Pro to Resemble 'Stacked' Mac Minis

Wednesday February 24, 2021 7:26 am PST by
Hit-and-miss leaker Jon Prosser has today alleged that the upcoming 2021 iMac models will offer five color options, mirroring the colors of the fourth-generation iPad Air, and revealed a number of additional details about the Mac Pro with Apple Silicon. In a new video on YouTube channel FrontPageTech, Prosser explained that the redesigned iMacs will come featuring options for Silver, Space ...
apple refurbished m1 mac mini

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished M1 Mac Mini

Thursday February 25, 2021 6:42 pm PST by
Apple today began selling certified refurbished Mac mini models with the M1 chip for the first time in the United States and Canada, with prices discounted by approximately 15 percent compared to brand new models as usual. For example, a refurbished Mac mini with the M1 chip, 256GB of SSD storage, and 16GB of unified memory is available for $759, compared to $899 brand new. Other custom...
mac mini developer transition kit photo feature

Apple Requiring Developers to Return DTK Mac Minis by March 31

Friday February 26, 2021 3:57 pm PST by
Apple today sent out emails to developers who are in possession of a Developer Transition Kit, asking them to return the machines by March 31. The Developer Transition Kits are Mac minis with A12Z chips that Apple provided for development purposes ahead of the release of the M1 Macs. Apple in the emails provided developers with shipping instructions, and plans to begin collecting the DTKs...
m1 mac mini

M1 Mac Users Report Excessive SSD Wear

Tuesday February 23, 2021 7:07 am PST by
Over the past week, some M1 Mac users have been reporting alarming SSD health readings, suggesting that these devices are writing extraordinary amounts of data to their drives (via iMore). Across Twitter and the MacRumors forums, users are reporting that M1 Macs are experiencing extremely high drive writes over a short space of time. In what appear to be the most severe cases, M1 Macs are sai...