HomeKit

Jump to Reviews How Tos Guides Articles

'HomeKit' Reviews

Review: First Alert's Onelink Safe & Sound Packs HomeKit, a Speaker, and Alexa Into a Smoke Detector

Back in mid-2018, First Alert launched its Onelink Safe & Sound smoke and carbon dioxide detector that doubles as a Bluetooth speaker and Wi-Fi connected Alexa assistant while also including HomeKit support to integrate with the rest of your smart home products in the Apple ecosystem. I've been using the Safe & Sound for a few months now, and I must say, it's turned out to be more useful than I'd initially thought it would be. Installation The Onelink Safe & Sound is a hardwired smoke detector, so you'll have to use this in a location that's tied into your home's electrical system rather than being able to rely on battery power. But if you've already got hardwired smoke detectors, swapping them out for Safe & Sound units is simple and straightforward for anyone with a modicum of do-it-yourself experience. Just make sure you turn off power to your existing detector at the breaker, unscrew the detector from the ceiling, and disconnect the wiring. Once you've got the bare wires hanging out of the ceiling, it's just a matter of attaching the Safe & Sound's mounting plate to the ceiling (likely by simply screwing it directly into the existing junction box in the ceiling), plugging in the proper wiring harness to the back of the Safe & Sound, connecting it to the house wiring with included wire nuts, and attaching the body of the detector to the mounting plate with a twist. Turn the power back on at the breaker, run through the setup for Onelink, HomeKit, and Alexa in the Onelink app on your iOS device, and you're good to go. It sounds like quite a few steps,

Review: Vocolinc Offers the First HomeKit Supported Essential Oil Diffuser With the 'FlowerBud'

Apple's HomeKit platform has expanded to support a variety of device categories since its launch in 2014, now including lights, thermostats, ceiling fans, sprinklers, outlets, and humidifiers. Although close in style to humidifiers, one specific accessory missing from HomeKit has been an essential oil diffuser, and now connected smart home brand Vocolinc has introduced the FlowerBud Smart Diffuser to rectify the situation. Setup Out of the box, the FlowerBud Smart Diffuser looks somewhat similar to other essential oil diffusers, and it's broken into two parts for quick-and-easy assembly. There's a 6.5-inch wide base that holds the water reservoir, and on its front there is a button for the mood light and one for the diffuser itself. The water reservoir holds 300 ml of water, but you'll have to make two passes with the included measuring cup to fill the base to capacity, since it only holds about 150 ml. Underneath, you'll find a port to connect the AC adapter's barrel plug into, and the slightly elevated rubber feet make everything level even with the cord passing through.

Review: Eve Aqua Brings HomeKit Automation to Your Irrigation Sprinklers

Just prior to rebranding as Eve Systems to focus on HomeKit devices in late June, Elgato launched its Eve Aqua water controller, a HomeKit-enabled device that attaches to an outdoor water faucet to control and monitor water usage. While Eve Aqua can be used with any hose connection, it's primarily intended for use with sprinklers, which can be set to run automatically on a schedule for optimal watering. I've been testing out an Eve Aqua at my home over the past few months, and I've found it to be a helpful automation tool to assist with irrigation needs. Installation Installation of Eve Aqua is simple, as it comes with two AA batteries needed for power and simply screws onto your existing exterior water faucet. The bottom of the Eve Aqua has a male connector that allows you to screw a hose with female connector directly on, or the Eve Aqua comes with an adapter that can be screwed on to support quick connections. I did have initial issues with some water leaking around the top connection, but after several attempts and making sure things were screwed together quite tightly, I was able to mostly eliminate the problem. I've retightened it a couple of times over the past few months after slight drips have appeared, and that's kept things under control. Once you have the Eve Aqua installed, the Eve app walks you through the rest of the setup process: scanning the HomeKit code, assigning it to a room, giving it a name, and configuring options such as schedules. If you need to change the unit settings such as liters to gallons, you'll find that in the Eve

Review: The HomeKit-Connected Eve Room Keeps Track of Temperature, Humidity and Air Quality in Your Home

Eve Systems has been offering HomeKit-connected devices since 2015, and the Eve Room, able to measure temperature, humidity, and air quality, is the newest Eve product available for purchase. The new Eve Room is actually an upgraded version of an original Eve Room that was one of Eve's first product releases back in 2015, but the new version has been overhauled with a redesigned enclosure that's both sleeker and more informative. While the original Eve Room was just a little white plastic block, the Eve Room adopts the new aluminum and e-ink design that was first introduced with the Eve Degree, Eve's more affordable temperature and humidity monitor that does not offer air quality monitoring. Eve Room (left) next to Eve Degree Like the Eve Degree, the Eve Room is palm sized and tiny enough that it's unobtrusive on a shelf, on a table, on a kitchen counter, or on a bedside table. It measures in at 2.1 x 2.1 x 0.6 inches, which is quite a bit smaller than the 3.1 x 3.1 x 1.3 inch measurements of the original Eve Room. Eve Room is an indoor product and should not be used outdoors. The 200x200 e-ink display of the Eve Room displays the current temperature, humidity, and air quality in the room, with air quality pictured as a series of stars from one to five. If you press on the arrows next to the display, you can cycle through several display options that focus on temperature, humidity, or both. I like the addition of the e-ink screen in the Eve Room because I can check the room conditions at a glance without needing to open up an app or ask Siri, something

Review: Koogeek's Light Strip and Door & Window Sensor Offer Solid Low-Cost HomeKit Options

Koogeek is one of the more interesting HomeKit accessory manufacturers, with an array of relatively low-cost and in some cases unusual products that can help users expand their Apple-focused smart home ecosystems. The company offers HomeKit-compatible smart outlets, switches, bulbs, and sockets similar to other manufacturers, but also has some less common products like light strips, door/window sensors, environmental monitors, and even power strips. LS1 Light Strip One of Koogeek's more popular HomeKit accessories is the LS1 Light Strip, a 2-meter string of LED lights that lets you choose from 16 million dimmable colors, whether you're looking for bias lighting behind your television or monitor, accent lighting in a kitchen, or any of a number of other applications. While Koogeek offers its own app for setting up and managing the LS1 Light Strip, HomeKit support means you can access it from the centralized Home app on iOS (and soon macOS Mojave) or Siri, and you can integrate it with other HomeKit devices to activate as part of a scene or other automations. Consisting of 60 LEDs, the LS1 is a 2-meter strip with some additional cord and a single-button controller that allows you to turn the lights on and off manually. The light strip is USB-powered, which can be a benefit as it gives you some interesting flexibility in terms of mounting locations when you can use a USB port on your TV, a computer, a dock, or a power bank to run them. On the downside, Koogeek doesn't provide a power adapter in the box, so you'll need to provide your own if you want to power it

Review: Lutron's Caséta Lamp Dimmers and Serena Shades Bring HomeKit Convenience to Your Lights and Windows

Three years ago, Lutron was one of the first vendors to venture into the HomeKit ecosystem with its Caséta Wireless lighting controls, which include plug-in lamp dimmers, wall-mounted dimmer switches, and remotes, all coordinated through a wireless "Smart Bridge" that plugs into your internet router. The Caséta system has been such a mainstay in the HomeKit world that Apple is still selling it in its stores, including a >$100 starter kit with a smart bridge, an in-wall switch, and a Pico remote control. Additional sets of one in-wall dimmer and one remote are available for $60 each. A host of other lighting switches and Pico remotes are also available to satisfy a range of needs, and the entire system is very popular with our readers. Lutron's Caséta lamp dimmer starter kit and Serena shade Beyond lighting, the Caséta system also integrates with other products, including several styles of automatic HomeKit window shades from Lutron, as well as a joint Lutron-Honeywell thermostat and even some ceiling fans from Hunter. In addition to HomeKit, Caséta also integrates with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Samsung SmartThings, and Nest, as well as Sonos, Carrier, ecobee, Logitech, and Xfinity Home. I've had the Caséta lamp dimmer system controlling the bedside lamps in my master bedroom for quite some time, and Lutron also sent along a demo setup of the company's battery-operated Serena shades to see how the different products integrate both within the Lutron app and through HomeKit. Serena shades are available in roller, single honeycomb, and double honeycomb

Nanoleaf's New Dodecahedron-Shaped Remote Gives You Access to 12 HomeKit Scenes

Nanoleaf's new 12-sided light-up remote joins its existing Nanoleaf Light Panels and Nanoleaf Rhythm, adding a whole slew of smartphone-free physical control options for your HomeKit setup in one easy-to-use accessory. The Nanoleaf Remote is bigger than button and remote devices from other companies, but it offers access to many more scenes and as you'll see in my review, it's a great value if you already own a Nanoleaf setup and want a simple iPhone-free control method that anyone in the household can use. For people unfamiliar with Nanoleaf, the company makes the Nanoleaf Light Panels, a HomeKit-enabled set of flat, triangle-shaped lights that connect together in a range of different user-designed configurations, providing both light and art. The Light Panels have LEDs inside and can be set to display dozens of different colors and patterns, which make up different light recipes. I've had a Nanoleaf setup for more than a year, and it continues to be one of my favorite HomeKit products. The Remote is specifically designed for users who already have Nanoleaf Light Panels. Design Nanoleaf's Remote has a design that's not quite like any other HomeKit-enabled remote-style device on the market, with dodecahedron shape where each side activates a different scene. The remote, which is a little bigger than palm sized, is made from a white plastic that admittedly feels a bit cheap, but it doesn't look bad sitting on a desk. When the remote arrives, it comes in two halves, with one empty side and a one side that houses the batteries, an LED light, and the

Review: Fibaro's 'The Button' Adds Physical Control Options to Your HomeKit Setup

"The Button" from Fibaro is the latest HomeKit accessory that's designed to add physical control options to your HomeKit setup, making it easier to access HomeKit devices without an iOS device or HomePod. Design wise, The Button looks like you might expect something called "The Button" to look. Made of smooth plastic, it has a small round base that holds a slightly larger button that depresses to activate HomeKit commands. I like the look of the button, and it offers a satisfying button-like press that's better than some of the other competing button and tap-style devices that offer physical HomeKit controls. The button I reviewed was white, but it is also available black and red. The Button supports just three gestures: a single click, a double click, and a press and hold. This limits what can be done with The Button, so a household may need more than one if there are a lot of HomeKit products and you want granular control over each one. You can attach the button to a wall or a desk using included adhesive or by nailing the plastic mounting plate into the wall. You can also just use it sans adhesive or mounting plate if it's just sitting on a desk or nightstand, or if you want to be able to move it around. There is no light to indicate that The Button is turned on and has power, but you can enable an audio feedback option in the settings section of the Fibaro app to have it beep when a button press is activated. Setting up The Button is a little more involved than the setup process for some other HomeKit products. You need to press down and

Review: Schlage Sense Remains a Top Option Among HomeKit-Enabled Smart Locks

Following my review of the Yale Assure Lock SL deadbolt with HomeKit support last month, a number of readers highlighted the Schlage Sense as another satisfactory HomeKit option worth considering. As it turns out, I've been using the Schlage Sense on my front door for quite some time, so it's worth taking a look at how Schlage's offering has held up over time. The Schlage Sense deadbolt was one of the first HomeKit-enabled smart locks, launching over two years ago, yet it remains one of the most popular smart locks on the market among Apple users. In fact, Apple continues to feature the Schlage Sense in its online and retail stores, although it is currently listed as unavailable for both online orders and in-store pickup even though it remains on the shelves at some Apple retail stores. Unlike the Assure Lock SL that comes in only a single design (albeit with a few color options), the Schlage Sense comes in two different styles that fit in with many of Schlage's other hardware products: a classic Camelot style and a more modern Century style, with Matte Black, Satin Nickel, and Aged Bronze finishes available depending on style. I've been using a Camelot-style Schlage Sense on my front door, paired with a matching non-locking Camelot doorknob to ensure I can't be accidentally locked out of my house due to a locked doorknob. The pairing looks good together, with the Camelot style offering a hint of elegance even with a prominent keypad. Installation Installation of the Schlage Sense is straightforward, and Schlage includes step-by-step directions to walk you

Review: Eve Button Offers Quick Physical Controls for Activating Your Favorite HomeKit Scenes

Elgato has been making HomeKit-enabled "Eve" Bluetooth accessories for several years now, and the company now boasts an impressive lineup that includes a range of sensors, switches and smart plugs, and motion detectors. Eve Button, Elgato's newest product, is a simple little three-gesture switch that's designed to control all of your other HomeKit products, activating scenes, turning lights on and off, and more. Design The Eve Button has a simple, clean design with a silver aluminum shell and a black plastic front plate with a smooth, circular button outline that doesn't protrude at all. It's using the same design introduced in the Eve Degree, so if you already have an Eve Degree, the Eve Button will complement it nicely. While there is no visible button protrusion, if you press on the button outline in the middle of the accessory, it will depress and activate the Eve Button's gestures. Pressing at the sides does not cause the front plate to depress, so the pressing motion is limited to the center, which is a clever design. The back of the Eve Button is where the battery compartment is located, which can be opened with a coin. The Eve Button uses a CR2032 replaceable watch battery that can be purchased from a local store or Amazon.com for just a couple of dollars. You can check battery level in the Home app. Elgato included four little rubber feet for the Eve Button so you can set it flat on a surface and it won't slip around, but curiously, there's no included adhesive strip or mounting option. The Eve Button is the kind of accessory I'd like to be

Review: Yale's $220 Assure Lock SL is a Sleek, Keyless HomeKit Deadbolt

Smart locks are one of the more popular types of HomeKit accessories, and Yale's Assure Lock SL deadbolt announced last October is one of the more interesting options on the market today. It's available in Polished Brass, Oil Rubbed Bronze, and Satin Nickel, and I've been using the Oil Rubbed Bronze for the past few months. With the Assure Lock SL, Yale has pursued an interesting strategy of offering a $169 basic keyless entry deadbolt that can also accommodate one of several optional $50 hardware modules that add support for HomeKit, Z-Wave, or Zigbee smart home integration. Locking Overview and Design While most smart deadbolts allow users to lock and unlock from the outside with both a keypad code and a standard key, the Assure Lock SL foregoes support for a standard key entirely. As a result, it allows for a much cleaner look from the outside with only a small keypad visible, and it obviously also prevents the lock from being manually picked. Exterior view It sounds like a dangerous design decision that could easily leave you locked out if your batteries run out, but Yale has a solution to that dilemma – touching a standard 9V battery to a pair of terminals on the bottom of the lock will provide enough power to allow you to enter your code and unlock the door. Other manufacturers like Schlage and Kwikset are also hopping on this bandwagon as a solution toward eliminating keys entirely, so it's likely to become even more popular in the future. Now, I don't know anyone who carries a 9V battery everywhere they go, so it means if your lock loses power

LIFX's HomeKit-Enabled LIFX Z Light Strip Adds Smart Multi-Color Accent Lighting to Your Home

LIFX, a company that makes a range of smart light bulbs and other lighting products, recently embraced HomeKit and introduced several HomeKit-compatible lights that are an alternative to the popular Philips Hue line of smart lights. One of the new products that's been updated with HomeKit support is the LIFX Z, a $90 light strip that's comparable to the LightStrip Plus from Philips, which I was able to test this week. The LIFX Z is a multi-zone light strip that supports up to 16 million colors, and like the Philips Hue LightStrip Plus, it measures in at 6.6 feet. You can buy extensions to make it longer. I'm deep in the Hue ecosystem with seven Hue lights in my office alone, so it was interesting to try an alternate solution. LIFX products, unlike Hue, connect directly to WiFi and thus don't require a bridge for functionality. This is nice because it means there's nothing to connect to your home router, but I did notice that the LIFX Z can be slower to respond to input than the Hue products. LIFX Z bottom, Hue LightStrip Plus on top Design wise, the LIFX Z looks a lot like the Hue LightStrip Plus. It's a strip of LED lights with an adhesive backing that can be attached to cabinets, desks, walls, and more. At one end, there's what I assume is a controller for HomeKit, which can also be attached next to the lights with adhesive, and a power adapter that needs to be plugged in. The LIFX Z light strip is thinner than the Philips version, and it comes in two pieces that attach together with thin metal prongs. The Hue LightStrip is all one piece and is thicker,

Review: Elgato Eve Light Switch and Eve Motion Add Versatility to Your HomeKit Setup

Elgato's Eve lineup of smart home devices is one of the largest contributors to the HomeKit ecosystem, with a variety of sensors and switches for inside and out, including five more products announced a couple of months ago. We reviewed a set of the early Eve products two years ago, when we found a solid set of sensors that were hampered by bugs in the early days of HomeKit. HomeKit has come a long way since that time, making it much more stable and useful, so many of our early qualms have been resolved and we were impressed by the new Eve Degree temperature monitor released earlier this year. Two of the other products in the Eve lineup are the Eve Light Switch, a rather typical smart light switch, and Eve Motion, a battery-operated motion sensor. I've been using both of these for a few months, and I've found them to be quite useful in automating my home. Eve Light Switch There are a number of HomeKit-compatible smart switches on the market, including one from iDevices that I looked at earlier this year. The Eve Light Switch was, however, the first entrant into this category late last year, and it remains a worthy competitor. Installation and Setup If you've ever swapped out a light switch, it's a pretty straightforward process, and installing the Eve Light Switch isn't much different. As always, make sure you turn off power at the circuit breaker for safety before getting inside the junction box. The Eve Light Switch is a lot bulkier than a traditional switch in order to accommodate all of the electronics, so you'll need to make sure you have enough

Review: Logitech's Circle 2 Brings HomeKit Compatibility and a New Design

Logitech's Circle 2, introduced in June, is the second-generation version of its Circle home security camera. This new version features a redesigned body, wired and wire-free versions, accessories that let it be positioned anywhere, and, through a recent update, HomeKit support. Circle 2 is meant to be used as a home security device and it's ideal for keeping an eye on your house while you're away from home. It's also great for keeping an eye on pets and children, and even communicating with the two-way microphone. Circle 2 connects to a home WiFi network and offers cloud functionality that lets you view video anywhere. I've been using a Logitech Circle camera for two years now sans HomeKit functionality, so I was eager to check out the HomeKit version. This is only the second HomeKit-compatible camera available on the market, and with the new design, the Logi Circle app, and cloud upload ability, the Circle 2 easily beats out the D-Link Omna as the best HomeKit camera you can buy at the moment. Though Logitech offers both wired and wire-free versions of the Circle 2, HomeKit only works with the wired version because Apple requires an always-on camera connection, and that's not how the wire-free Circle 2 works. Design and Features The wired version of the Circle 2 consists of a small palm-sized camera module that attaches to a base with a pivoting neck, allowing the camera to be positioned and rotated into an ideal angle to work with any room setup. The base can be attached to a wall with a wall mount, and the camera module itself is detachable from the base

Review: Emerson's $200 Sensi Touch HomeKit Thermostat Offers a Large Color Display and Easy Setup

Fueled by the popularity of Nest, thermostats remain one of the more popular categories of smart home devices. I recently took at look at Honeywell's Lyric Round thermostat with HomeKit support, and today I'm following up with Emerson's latest HomeKit model, the Sensi Touch. Announced back in May and launched in June, the Sensi Touch offers a horizontal design with a color touchscreen taking up much of the front of the device. Aside from onscreen controls, the Sensi Touch can also be managed via app or through HomeKit, offering a number of options for controls. Installation I've had a bit of previous experience swapping out thermostats, so I was already familiar with what needed to be done, and all told it took me less than 30 minutes to remove my old thermostat and get the Sensi Touch installed. After making sure the circuit breakers for my heating and air conditioning system were turned off, I launched the Sensi app on my iPhone and it walked me through all of the steps to get up and running. It's a great setup process, with easy to follow instructions that integrate with the iPhone's Camera app to take a photo of your existing thermostat wiring for reference, as well as a terminal picker that lets you tell the app exactly which wires your current system uses so that it can guide you in connecting the Sensi Touch. As with most other thermostats, the Sensi Touch comes in two pieces, a rear plate that is screwed to the wall and contains the terminals for the wiring coming out of the wall, paired with a main body that snaps onto the rear plate for a clean

Review: Chamberlain's MyQ Garage and Home Bridge Add HomeKit Support to Your Garage Door

Back in January at CES, Chamberlain announced plans to release MyQ Home Bridge, a hardware hub to allow connected garage openers in the company's MyQ ecosystem to work with HomeKit. The MyQ Home Bridge was initially scheduled to launch in April, but as is common with these types of products needing to gain HomeKit certification, it was pushed back a bit and had a brief quiet launch earlier this month with an official launch coming just yesterday. The MyQ Home Bridge requires that your existing garage door opener already support MyQ wireless connectivity through one of three methods: built-in MyQ Wi-Fi support within the opener, a non-smart garage door opener linked to a MyQ Garage hub, or add-on Wi-Fi connectivity for a MyQ-enabled opener using a MyQ Internet Gateway. Box contents of MyQ Home Bridge (left) and MyQ Garage (right) I own a Chamberlain chain drive garage door opener from 2009, but it does not include any MyQ technology built in, so in order to add HomeKit support to my setup I needed to install two separate pieces of hardware: a MyQ Garage for basic Wi-Fi support and then the new MyQ Home Bridge to add HomeKit compatibility. Alongside the original MyQ Home Bridge announcement in January, Chamberlain also disclosed plans for a Smart Garage Hub that will consolidate both the MyQ Garage and MyQ Home Bridge functions into a single piece of hardware. The Smart Garage Hub was originally planned to debut in July, but Chamberlain tells me its launch has been delayed and the company is not yet sharing any new target dates for it. MyQ Garage Working with

Review: Honeywell's $199 Lyric Round Thermostat Features a Nest-Like Design With HomeKit Support

Some of the more interesting types of smart home devices are thermostats, which can help save energy by optimizing scheduling, automatically sensing when the home is occupied or vacant, and more. One of the early entrants into the field on the HomeKit side is Honeywell, which has introduced several different smart thermostats, starting with the second-generation Lyric Round, which debuted early last year. I've been using a Lyric Round for quite a while now, and I've come to appreciate its integration with HomeKit and its ease of use, while Honeywell has continued to improve its function and stability over time.

Review: iDevices' Switches and Outlets Bring HomeKit to Your Existing Lights and Home Appliances

iDevices was one of the first companies to announce plans for producing HomeKit-compatible products, focusing primarily on switches and outlets but also branching out a bit with a thermostat. Earlier this year, iDevices was acquired by major electrical equipment manufacturer Hubbell, but the iDevices brand and product lineup lives on. I've been using a number of iDevices products, including the recently launched Wall Switch and Wall Outlet, as well as the Switch and Outdoor Switch that launched some time ago, and I've gotten a pretty good idea of how well these accessories fit into my home and integrate with other HomeKit devices through HomeKit. All of the devices are also compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, but for my purposes I focused on HomeKit. Wall Switch and Wall Outlet iDevices' Wall Switch and Wall Outlet are the latest additions to the company's HomeKit family, and they're the most complicated to install since they require in-wall installation. It's a little bit of a hassle and some users such as renters may not be able take advantage of them, but installation is a pretty straightforward project and they provide a much cleaner and more integrated look to your HomeKit system. As with any other time you're performing electrical work, you should turn off power at the circuit breaker and make sure electricity isn't flowing to the circuits where you're working. iDevices includes step-by-step instructions to walk you through the entire installation process and also includes some helpful videos on its YouTube channel.

Review: Elgato's New HomeKit-Connected Eve Degree is a Sleek, Palm-Sized Temperature Monitor

Elgato recently updated its Eve lineup of HomeKit-connected products with the Eve Degree, a temperature and humidity sensor that joins the existing Eve Weather and the Eve Room. Priced at $69.99, the Eve Degree feels like an iteration of the cheaper Eve Weather. It monitors temperature, humidity, and atmospheric pressure like the Eve Weather, but it's smaller, better designed, and it includes an LCD display. Design Eve Degree is palm-sized and the tiniest of Elgato's temperature sensors, measuring in at 2.1 x 2.1 x 0.6 inches. For comparison's sake, the Eve Weather is a good deal larger at 3.1 x 3.1 x 1.3 inches. The Eve Degree features a square-shaped anodized aluminum body with a temperature readout that makes it easy to see the room's temperature without needing to check an app. Compared to the white plastic Eve Weather and the Eve Room, it's more stylish and better able to blend in with a range of decors, plus it's lighter so it's easier to mount on a wall if desired.

Review: D-Link's Omna 180 Cam HD Offers HomeKit, But Could Use Improvement

Connected home security cameras have been on the market for quite some time, but D-Link recently began selling the first HomeKit-compatible security camera. Priced competitively at $199, the D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD camera has several perks over competing cameras that don't offer HomeKit integration -- it's guaranteed to have Apple's required level of encryption, it works with Siri, and it can be viewed right in the Apple-created Home app. Design The Omna is made from brushed aluminum and is palm-sized, so it can be placed just about anywhere, but it needs to go on a flat surface and can't be wall mounted like some other options. Size wise, it's a bit taller than a standard soda can, but skinnier. The camera portion is mounted on the front, a microSD card slot is at the bottom along with a reset button, and there's a small grated area at the bottom, presumably for heat dissipation, since the Omna does get somewhat warm. A green LED on the front lights up when it's powered on, and a power cord is attached to the back.

Review: The Nanoleaf Smarter Kit Features Smart HomeKit-Enabled Light Bulbs With a Unique Look [Updated]

Nanoleaf, a company that specializes in energy efficient LED-based lighting, got its start on Kickstarter in 2012 with a unique set of light bulbs that looked more like art than traditional lighting with individual LEDs mounted on origami-folded printed circuit boards. Nanoleaf has since expanded from simple lightbulbs to home automation with the introduction of its Nanoleaf Home Smarter Kit. Consisting of two of its signature dimmable bulbs and a geometric hub, the Nanoleaf Home Smarter Kit integrates with Apple's HomeKit home automation platform, allowing users to control their lights both through Siri and through an accompanying Nanoleaf app. Design When it comes to the hardware, the Nanoleaf Smarter Kit is undeniably attractive. The two Ivy bulbs it ships with are some of the nicest looking bulbs you can find, suitable for use in both closed and open-style lamps and light fixtures. The hub, which connects the bulbs to the Internet, is stylish enough to sit out on a shelf or an entertainment unit without looking like an eyesore. It's without a doubt the most visually appealing HomeKit product I've tested so far. Because the bulbs that the Smarter Kit ships with are black, you'll need to take that into account with any lights where the bulbs are visible. The distinctive design is nice, but it's also not going to match with every decor. Keep in mind the hub is going to need to be plugged into the router via ethernet because this is a Zigbee setup. For the record, the Ivy bulbs are standard bulbs that are going to fit in any E26 or E27 lamp and they

'HomeKit' How Tos

How To Play Music on HomePod When Activating HomeKit Scenes Using Siri Shortcuts

Although HomePod is available in Apple's Home app, the company's smart home speaker as of yet can't be integrated into HomeKit scenes and automations. With such a feature, users would be able to activate their favorite HomeKit scenes, alongside a specific Apple Music playlist, album, or song from their HomePod. Reddit user Running_In_Space on r/HomeKit explained recently that this is actually possible today, thanks to a helpful (and super simple to create) Siri Shortcut. With the Shortcut, you can tie any Home scene together with any Apple Music playlist. While the Shortcut is limited to playlists, you can choose from your own playlists or those created by Apple Music. In the example below, we created a holiday themed Siri Shortcut that turns on Christmas tree lights (connected to an iDevices Switch) and shuffles a holiday playlist any time we say, "Hey Siri, Merry Christmas." Also remember that you'll need an Apple Music subscription, HomeKit-enabled lights or other devices of some kind, and the updated Siri Shortcuts iOS app. How to Create the Siri Shortcut Open the iOS "Shortcuts" app Tap "Create Shortcut" In the search bar, type "Get Playlist" and add it into your Shortcut Next to Playlist, tap "Choose" and pick your desired playlist Search for "Play Music" and add it (here you can also edit settings for shuffling and/or repeating the playlist) Search for "Run Home Scene" and add it Next to Home, tap "Choose" and select your home Next to Scene, tap "Choose" and select your desired scene Before you tap "Done,"

How to Use HomePod to Control Your HomeKit Devices

Apple's new $349 HomePod sounds incredible and is the ultimate speaker for Apple Music subscribers, but it's also an excellent way to manage your HomeKit-compatible devices through Siri voice commands. Controlling HomeKit accessories with Siri on HomePod isn't radically different from controlling them via an iOS device, but there are some extra HomePod benefits to be aware of. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. HomePod and HomeKit Setup If you've never used HomeKit before and you purchase a HomePod, when you set it up it's added to HomeKit and to the Home app. Setup includes a step asking you to choose a Home you're using HomePod in, and if you don't have Home settings already established, it'll let you choose the default "My Home" option, which is established for every iCloud account. If you use HomeKit already like I do, you can choose your existing home, if it has a different name. From there, you'll choose the room where your HomePod is located, which is also a HomeKit setup step. You'll be familiar with this if you've ever used HomeKit before. With these two setup steps, you establish a HomeKit setup if you didn't have one before. HomePod itself is a HomeKit accessory, and it's controlled and managed in the dedicated "Home" app along with all other HomeKit accessories. HomePod in the Home App The HomePod is listed in the Home app as an available accessory, and if you're a HomeKit user, you know how this works. If you're not, the Home app isn't tough to navigate. Your HomePod will be listed as "HomePod" on the main

How to Prevent Other HomePod Users From Affecting Your Apple Music Recommendations

Apple's HomePod speaker is best enjoyed when linked to an Apple Music subscription, since this allows you to make the most of Siri's enhanced music smarts and its DJ-like role as a personal music curator, or "mixologist", as Apple calls it. As Apple Music subscribers will know, the streaming service learns your music preferences based on what you say and play, which helps it populate the app's "For You" section with new songs that you might like, and enables Siri to generate new playlists on the fly at your request. If you're concerned that other people in your household will skew your Apple Music recommendations by using HomePod to play songs that don't align with your tastes, then there's a setting you'll want to disable as soon as possible. It's called "Use Listening History", and here's how to find it. How to Enable/Disable Your HomePod's Listening History Open the Home app on your iPhone or iPad. Long press on the HomePod icon in your Accessories list. Tap the Details button. Under the "Music & Podcasts" section, toggle on/off Use Listening History. And that's it. By turning off the setting, HomePod will happily continue to play songs from Apple's vast music catalog for anyone who asks, but the songs will be excluded from its personal curation

How to Use Your iPhone With HomeKit-Enabled Devices

Now that HomeKit-enabled accessories are hitting the market, you may be wondering what you can do with your new connected devices. Whether you are controlling the temperature, turning off lights, or locking the front door, you will be able to use your iPhone to take care of various activities around the house. If you are away from home, you’ll even be able to use Apple TV (third-generation or newer running Apple TV OS 7.0 or later) to control some functions while away from home. We've got a tutorial for getting your HomeKit-enabled accessories ready for use. Insteon's app for HomeKit-enabled lights Download the App HomeKit is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch running iOS 8.1 or later. When you get your device, be sure to download the compatible app from the App Store and pair your device using the special code that comes with your new HomeKit accessory. Setup Once paired, use Siri to take control of your electronics. You can tell the virtual assistant to set the temperature or turn off the lights in the kitchen. There are some commands that will require you to unlock your iPhone before Siri will comply. For example, you won’t be able to unlock your door until you unlock your iPhone. Some apps allow you to group multiple accessories together, letting them be controlled with a single Siri command. Groupings need to be set up in third-party accessory apps, and the settings may be called "homes, rooms, or scenes." Third-party apps that offer HomeKit groupings can often incorporate HomeKit devices they're not even designed to control. Lutron's app,

'HomeKit' Guides

Getting Started With HomeKit: A Beginner's Guide

HomeKit is Apple's home automation platform for controlling smart home products with iOS apps and Siri voice commands. The platform was announced at WWDC 2014, and the first HomeKit-enabled products were released one year later. The software framework communicates directly with connected accessories within the home, securely encrypts all data and even works remotely over iCloud remote access with a third-generation Apple TV or later when you are away from

'HomeKit' Articles

Gardena Smart System Gains Apple HomeKit Support

The Gardena Smart System is now compatible with Apple's HomeKit, thanks to the availability of a software update that brings HomeKit integration to Gardena devices like the Smart Water Control, Smart Irrigation Control, Smart Sensor, and Smart Power. Originally announced at CES 2019, the update pushed out today should automatically apply to existing Gardena Smart System owners, enabling their systems to work with the Apple Home app and Siri voice commands. If your Gardena Smart System gateway hasn't yet received the update, you can manually trigger it via the Gardena Smart System App. The individual components (sockets, sensors, and so on) can also be manually updated with the new HomeKit firmware via the app. Gardena's Smart System products include watering sets for hedges and bushes on balconies, irrigation controls for controlling multiple irrigation zones, a control set for managing water usage, a water controller for automatic irrigation, sensors for measuring soil moisture and other parameters, and a smart power adapter. (Via Macerkopf.de)

Eve's HomeKit-Enabled Light Strip Now Available for Purchase

Eve, known for its line of HomeKit-enabled smart products, today announced the availability of its newest HomeKit accessory, the Eve Light Strip. First announced at CES, the Eve Light Strip is advertised as the brightest HomeKit-enabled LED strip to date with 1,800 lumens and support for full-spectrum white and millions of colors. At 1,800 lumens, the Eve Light Strip will be brighter than the Philips Hue Lightstrip Plus, which is 1,600 lumens, and it will provide enough light to replace a standard room lamp at its brightest levels. The Eve Light Strip is 6.6 feet long but can be cut at one-foot intervals for use in smaller areas or increased to 32.8 feet by adding 6.6 foot extension strips. Preset colors are included with the Eve Light Strip, but you can also create your own using the Eve app. Eve Light Strip connects to a home's WiFi setup and is HomeKit compatible, which means that it responds to Siri voice commands, can be controlled via the Home app, and works in scenes with othe HomeKit products. Eve is debuting the Light Strip today and it can be purchased from the Eve website for $79.95. Extensions are priced at

Vizio Offers Beta Signup for AirPlay 2 SmartCast TV Software

At CES this year, Vizio announced that their SmartCast TVs would be receiving support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit in a free over-the-air update later this year. This would allow iOS and Mac users to stream music and video to SmartCast-enabled Vizio TVs, as well as allow users to control the TV from their Home app on iOS or via Siri voice commands. Vizio promised that beta testers would be allowed access to the software in the first quarter of 2019. Vizio has now posted a blog post (via Engadget) describing the upcoming features as well as a link to sign up for beta access (scroll to bottom). If you have a SmartCast-enabled VIZIO TV and an updated iOS device, you could be selected to participate in the beta. Provide your email, and we'll get back to you soon with more details on how to get started.Vizio has said that specific models as far back as 2016 will be getting the

Vizio Says 2016 4K SmartCast TVs Will Support AirPlay 2 and HomeKit

AirPlay 2 and HomeKit functionality will be available on all of Vizio's 2016 4K UHD SmartCast Displays, the company recently confirmed on Twitter. Vizio's Twitter account for support questions supplied the information in response to a question from a MacRumors reader. Apple recently shared a list of all AirPlay 2-enabled television sets on its HomeKit website, but only 2017, 2018, and 2019 Vizio models are listed. From Apple's list: - Vizio P-Series Quantum (2019 and 2018) - Vizio P-Series (2019, 2018 and 2017) - Vizio M-Series (2019, 2018 and 2017) - Vizio E-Series (2019, 2018 and 2017) - Vizio D-series (2019, 2018 and 2017) 2017 SmartCast models feature the same hardware as earlier 2016 models, which means the integration will work with 2016 TV sets as well. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We have confirmed that all 2016 4K UHD SmartCast Displays will support the Apple integration. -A— VIZIO Support (@VIZIOsupport) January 8, 2019 Vizio is one of the only companies implementing AirPlay 2 support on older television sets. Sony, Samsung, and LG are also enabling HomeKit support, but only on 2018 and 2019 models. Samsung, for example, will support HomeKit on its 4 to 8 series TVs from 2018 and 2019, while LG and Sony are limiting the feature to new 2019

CES 2019: Gardena Smart System Now Works With Apple HomeKit

The Gardena Smart System is gaining support for Apple's HomeKit, with HomeKit integration coming to Gardena devices like the Smart Water Control, Smart Irrigation Control, Smart Sensor, and Smart Power. Gardena accessories are gaining HomeKit compatibility through a software update, allowing existing Gardena Smart System owners to upgrade their systems to work with the Apple Home app and Siri voice commands. Gardena's Smart System consists of a range of products, including watering sets for various areas like hedges and bushes or balconies, irrigation controls for controlling multiple irrigation zones, a control set for managing water usage, a water controller for automatic irrigation, sensors for measuring soil moisture and other parameters, and a smart power adapter. The Gardena devices, available since 2016, are designed to allow gardeners to precisely monitor everything that goes on in their homes while also automating care in many ways. All of the devices have been able to be controlled via the Gardena app, but HomeKit offers more versatility and allows for integration with other HomeKit devices like outdoor lights, sensors, and more. HomeKit compatibility will be added by the end of the first quarter of 2019.

CES 2019: Sony's Upcoming 4K and 8K TVs to Support AirPlay 2 and HomeKit

Starting later this year, Sony's new 2019 Z9G Series 8K LCDs, A9G Series OLED 4K TVs, and X950G 4K LCD TVs will support Airplay 2 and HomeKit protocols from Apple. Other TV manufacturers, including Samsung, Vizio, and LG have also announced support for HomeKit and AirPlay 2 for their 2019 smart TV lineups. All of the major TV brands will support both, with the exception of Samsung. Samsung TVs support AirPlay 2 and will have an exclusive app for accessing iTunes content, but won't work with HomeKit. With AirPlay 2 support, compatible Sony television sets will be able to stream videos, music, photos, and more right from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac, and multi-room audio across multiple AirPlay 2 devices will also be available. Content AirPlayed on Sony television sets will be able to be controlled using the Lock screen widget or the Control Center of an iOS device. Users will be able to play, pause, fast-forward, rewind, and adjust volume on the TV when AirPlaying TVs, movies, and music. With HomeKit and Siri integration, users will be able to control their TVs via Siri voice commands, using voice requests to do things like play specific TV shows on a specific television. The TVs will be present in the Home app, so Siri controls will also be available for doing things like turning on the TV or including the TV in a HomeKit scene. Sony's television sets run an Android-based operating system with built-in Cast support from Google, which means users will be able to choose between using Google and Apple services. AirPlay-compatible Sony television sets include

GE Debuts New C by GE HomeKit-Compatible Smart Wall Switches, Full Color Lights and Accessories

GE Lighting recently announced an expansion to its C by GE portfolio, introducing a number of new HomeKit-compatible smart wall switches, full color lights, and accessories. All of the below products will be rolling out across 2019, starting with the first quarter of the year. To use these products with HomeKit, the C-Reach Hub, introduced last year, is required. Full Color LED Bulbs C by GE is gaining colored LED bulb options, which will provide millions of colors along with tunable white colors, much like LIFX and Philips Hue. There's a 60-watt equivalent A19 bulb, a BR30 for recessed lighting areas, and a custom-sized light strip. The new lighting products can be controlled via an app or through Siri with the required HomeKit hub. Smart Switches GE is adding several smart switches, designed to let users turn on, off, and dim any brand incandescent, halogen, CFL, or LED bulb. There are multiple options available, from a basic smart on/off switch to a dimmer switch with motion detection and an ambient light sensor. For those who have C by GE smart bulbs, GE says that the smart switches allow for full control of the bulbs even when the switch is off, eliminating the inability to control smart bulbs when a light switch is turned off by kids or visitors. Smart Wall Plug and Motion Sensor C by GE is gaining a new smart wall plug, which is designed to make any appliance or device that's plugged into it controllable via an app or Siri. There's also a new battery powered motion sensor coming that is designed to detect motion and ambient light

CES 2019: Honeywell Home T9 and T10 Pro Smart Thermostats Debut With Per-Room Temperature Control, HomeKit Later This Year

Resideo today at CES 2019 introduced its latest Honeywell Home smart thermostats, the T9 and T10 Pro. The latest T-series thermostats feature wireless sensors that measure temperature and humidity on a room-by-room basis. The thermostats will be compatible with HomeKit later this year, according to an Apple spokesperson, allowing them to be controlled in the Home app on iOS and macOS and with Siri. The smart room sensors offer a few other features, including people detection that ensures occupied rooms are at a desirable temperature, and a 200-foot range to help deliver whole-home comfort, according to Resideo. The T9 and T10 Pro offer simple scheduling, geofencing, and compatibility with demand response programs that may qualify for utility rebates in select regions. With the companion Honeywell Home app on iOS, homeowners can set temperatures per room, switch which room is prioritized, receive temperature alerts, and more. The T9 can "configure itself with its wire-sensing technology and includes a C-wire adapter, making do-it-yourself installation very simple," while the T10 Pro requires professional installation due to its humidity and ventilation controls. Resideo says the new T-series thermostats will be available in North America "this spring." At launch, the thermostats will integrate with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Resideo's press release does not mention HomeKit support, but an Apple spokesperson confirmed the platform will be supported "later this year." The T9 with one sensor will be available at major U.S. retailers nationwide

CES 2019: Kwikset and Mighton Announce New HomeKit-Enabled Door Locks

Kwikset today at CES 2019 announced that its HomeKit-enabled Premis smart door lock will be available in a new contemporary style with sleek, square lines later this year in the United States. While pricing was not disclosed, the current Premis is available for $229 regularly in the United States. Kwikset Premis in new contemporary style on left, Mighton Avia on right Premis enables homeowners to unlock and lock a door in four different ways: using the Home app on iOS, using Siri voice commands, entering a passcode on the touchpad, or the old fashioned route of using a key. And with a HomePod, Apple TV, or iPad set up as a home hub, the lock can be controlled away from home too. Premis can also be added to HomeKit scenes. When you arrive home, for example, you could say "I'm home" to Siri and the deadbolt will unlock, perhaps alongside your lights turning on and your bedroom blinds lowering for the evening. Homeowners can assign up to 30 customizable user codes to guests for use when the homeowner isn't present using the companion Kwikset Premis app for iOS, which also lets users manage those user codes, view lock activity, track lock status, receive lock notifications, and more. The app is free on the App Store. In related news, Mighton has introduced Avia, a HomeKit-enabled smart lock that works on multipoint locking doors. The lock will be available in May 2019, according to Apple, which provided MacRumors with a summary of recently announced HomeKit-compatible accessories timed for CES 2019. Pricing was not disclosed. A variety of other HomeKit-enabled

Ikea's HomeKit-Enabled Smart Blinds Launch in Germany, U.S. Launch Coming April 1 [Updated]

Ikea this week added to its line of HomeKit-connected smart home products with the launch of the Kadrilj and Fyrtur smart roller blinds, which are now available for purchase in Germany. Both of the smart blind products are powered via a battery that allows users to raise or lower them through an included remote control, a smartphone app, or through Alexa, Google Assistant, or HomeKit. Demo video via Zatz Not Funny The blinds come in six different sizes to fit a variety of windows, ranging from 80x195cm to 140x195cm. Both are a gray shade, but the Kadrilj is a darker gray than the Fyrtur and less transparent. Ikea's website says that the blinds are available in some German Ikea stores, and will be available online starting on February 2. Pricing starts at 99 euros for Kadrilj and 199 euros for Fyrtur. It's not yet clear if the February 2 online rollout will include availability in the United States, but with the blinds available in Germany, a U.S. launch is not likely to be too far behind. Update: Ikea's HomeKit-enabled smart blinds will be available in the United States starting on April 1. Ikea plans to sell the Fyrtur model in the U.S., with the Kadrilj model limited to other countries.

AirPlay 2 and HomeKit Support Coming to New LG Smart TVs

Following in the footsteps of Samsung and Vizio, LG today at CES 2019 announced that AirPlay 2 and HomeKit support is coming to its 2019 smart TVs. AirPlay 2 support will allow users to stream videos, music, photos, and more directly from an iPhone, iPad, and Mac to new LG smart TVs, complete with lock screen controls. HomeKit support will enable users to easily control the TVs using the Home app on iPhone, iPad, and Mac or Siri voice commands. LG's press release:Users can use their own voice to get things done with Amazon Alexa, a new addition to LG's AI TV lineup in 2019, and the support of Apple AirPlay 2 and HomeKit. With AirPlay 2, users can easily play videos directly from their Apple devices, iTunes and other video apps, music or photos to their LG SIGNATURE OLED TV R. With Apple HomeKit support, customers will be able to control their LG TV using the Home app or by asking Siri.Apple recently updated its website with information about how AirPlay 2 and HomeKit will be implemented on smart TVs from "leading TV manufacturers." Samsung smart TVs are also getting a dedicated iTunes movies and TV shows app.

CES 2019: First Alert Previewing New HomeKit-Enabled Smoke Detector-and-Speaker With Mesh Wi-Fi and AirPlay 2

First Alert today announced that it will be previewing a new model of its Safe & Sound smoke and carbon monoxide detector, which doubles as a speaker, at CES 2019 in Las Vegas. The new model will remain compatible with HomeKit, allowing it to be controlled in the Home app on iOS and macOS and with Siri voice commands. The second-generation Safe & Sound features mesh Wi-Fi technology, delivering expanded and stronger Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the home, according to First Alert. And coming "soon" — that's been the case for awhile — the detector will support AirPlay 2, enabling streaming from Apple devices and multi-room audio. The detector has a built-in speaker with noise-canceling microphones and is available with either Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant built in. Alexa users, for example, can ask to stream music from Amazon Music or Spotify, read the news, check the weather, control other smart home devices, and so forth. As for the detector itself, an alarm alerts homeowners on their smartphones in the event of a smoke or carbon monoxide emergency, whether home or away. With exclusive voice and location technology by First Alert, the Safe & Sound alerts users to the type of danger and its location within the home. First Alert has not revealed pricing or availability for the new Safe & Sound. The original model is currently on sale for $199.99 on Amazon in the United States, down from $249.99 regularly. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission, which helps us keep the

CES 2019: TP-Link Plans to Add HomeKit Support to Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini in Early 2019

TP-Link today announced that it plans to make its Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini compatible with HomeKit in early 2019. HomeKit support will allow for the smart plug to be controlled in the Home app on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac and with Siri voice commands. It will also be possible to add the smart plug to a HomeKit scene, which lets users control multiple accessories at the same time, such as when arriving home. This smart plug features a compact design that takes up only one receptacle on a typical double-receptacle wall outlet. They cost $24.99 each or $64.99 for a three-pack on Amazon and at select retailers such as Best Buy in the United States. TP-Link is introducing seven new Kasa smart home products at CES 2019 in Las Vegas, including a video doorbell, light switch, light strip, security cameras, and additional plugs, which can be controlled with the Kasa Smart app on the App Store, but HomeKit support was not specified for these accessories. The entire Kasa lineup is, however, compatible with rival platforms Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana. HomeKit-enabled smart plugs are quite common, with a wide variety of options available from brands such as Eve, iDevices, iHome, Wemo, and Koogeek. They can be used to conveniently turn on and off TVs, lamps, coffee machines, and other household objects with an iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple Watch. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission, which helps us keep the site running.

Vizio SmartCast TVs to Gain Support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit Later This Year

Vizio today announced that its recent smart TVs will gain support for Apple's wireless streaming protocol AirPlay 2 and smart home platform HomeKit via a free SmartCast 3.0 over-the-air software update later this year. AirPlay 2 support will allow users to stream videos, music, photos, and more directly from an iPhone, iPad, and Mac to SmartCast-enabled Vizio TVs, complete with lock screen controls. HomeKit support will enable users to easily control the TV using the Home app on iPhone, iPad, and Mac or Siri voice commands. Vizio says the SmartCast 3.0 update with AirPlay 2 and HomeKit can be tested by registered beta members in the United States and Canada in the first quarter of 2019. The software will be publicly released in the second quarter of 2019 and will also be preinstalled on Vizio's entire 2019 lineup of smart TVs. The upcoming SmartCast 3.0 update will also add expanded Google Assistant actions for eligible SmartCast TVs. Google Assistant users, for example, will have the ability to use simple voice commands to launch apps, select inputs as well as pause, resume, stop, fast-forward, rewind content, and more. Amazon Alexa users can also control their TV, and coming later this year, launch apps without lifting a finger, according to Vizio. Apple recently updated its website with information about how AirPlay 2 and HomeKit will be implemented on smart TVs from "leading TV manufacturers," including Samsung, which is also introducing an iTunes movies and TV shows app that does not appear will be available on Vizio smart TVs at this

CES 2019: Arlo Unveils HomeKit-Enabled Ultra 4K HDR Security Camera and All-in-One Home Security System

Arlo Technologies today announced its new Arlo Ultra 4K wire-free HDR security camera and Arlo Security System, the latter of which is being billed as a comprehensive security solution for the home or business. The HomeKit-compatible Arlo Ultra 4K HDR video camera features both color and black and white night vision via an LED integrated spotlight, a 180-degree panoramic field-of-view lens, and two-way audio with advanced noise cancelation. The Arlo Ultra ships with the Arlo SmartHub, which will also become Zigbee and Z-Wave compatible in the second half of 2019, allowing users to control a wide range of "Works with Arlo" certified third-party smart home devices via the Arlo app. As part of the Arlo ecosystem, the SmartHub will also support the newly announced Arlo Security System, which consists of the Arlo Multi-Sensor, Arlo Siren and Arlo Remote, to form a comprehensive security solution. The Arlo Multi-Sensor detects windows and doors opening and closing, motion, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, water leaks, temperature changes and more. The battery-operated Arlo Siren features a loud siren accompanied by a red strobe light to deter intruders. Users can also enable presence simulation to emit audio sounds, such as dog barking or TV audio. In addition, a built-in melody can be activated to notify users of specific events, such as the Multi-Sensor detecting a door opening. Meanwhile, the Arlo Remote lets owners arm and disarm the system without using the Arlo mobile app. It also features two customizable buttons that can be programed to

CES 2019: Brilliant Home Control Light Switch Replacement Gaining HomeKit Support in the Spring

Smart home tech company Brilliant will be adding HomeKit support to its Brilliant Home Control light switch in spring 2019, Brilliant told MacRumors today. Introduced in September 2018, Brilliant Control is designed to replace any existing light switch in your home, adding touch and voice control capabilities for a number of smart home platforms. At launch, Brilliant supported smart home devices from Amazon, Google, Nest, Ecobee, Honeywell, Ring, August, Philips Hue, Sonos, and Wemo, but HomeKit support was left out. That's going to be rectified later this year, with Brilliant announcing the news just ahead of this year's Consumer Electronics Show. Brilliant Control offers a number of features when paired with other smart home devices. With Sonos, for example, the light switch is able to act as a hub for music playback. With a Ring doorbell, you can view the video feed on the Brilliant Control, and with a Nest, you can adjust temperature through the device without having to access the Nest itself. Multiple Brilliant Control devices can be paired up to serve as a speaker system and video intercom for house-wide communication purposes, and the display can be used as a picture frame, displaying family photos and other art. The three grooves on the Brilliant Control serve as sliders for adjusting lighting for the lights attached to the switch the Brilliant Control replaced. With HomeKit support, HomeKit-enabled devices will be able to be controlled via the voice and touch integrations on the Brilliant Control."Brilliant unifies control of smart home

CES 2019: Netatmo Announces Smart Video Doorbell With HomeKit Support

Following its recent acquisition by Legrand, French company Netatmo has announced an Apple HomeKit compatible smart doorbell at CES 2019. The Smart Video Doorbell features a typical design that includes a 1080p camera at the top with 160-degree lens and built-in motion sensor, two-way communication via built-in speaker and microphone, and a button at the bottom for visitors to ring. The HomeKit support means that users can receive an instant iOS notification when someone rings the doorbell which enables them to jump straight into the Home app to see who's at the door. The Apple HomeKit integration also extends to automation rules, so users can set up trigger actions like turning on outdoor smart lights when motion is detected. Other smart services like IFTTT are also supported. The Netatmo Smart Doorbell stores video on an onboard microSD card and doesn't need a subscription like some other doorbell security systems. Owners can also choose to automatically save videos in a personal Dropbox or FTP server. On the other hand, Netatmo's product is designed to be a straight doorbell replacement, so a wired connection is required to get it up and running. Pricing information has yet to be disclosed but product availability is expected in the second half of

CES 2019: U by Moen Smart Shower Set to Gain Long-Promised HomeKit Update

Moen today announced that its U by Moen smart shower system is receiving several upgrades for compatibility with voice assistants, making it easy to turn on and adjust your shower simply by speaking. The most notable addition for Apple users is HomeKit support, which will reportedly come to U by Moen this quarter, to be followed by Google Assistant integration. U by Moen is already compatible with Amazon Alexa, but Moen is announcing improved integration as a Smart Home Skill, unlocking more intuitive commands.To activate U by Moen shower, users can ask their voice assistant to remotely start, stop and pause the shower with the sound of their voice. Once they have created personalized presets in the U by Moen app, homeowners simply state the name of the preset or specify a specific water temperature for the shower within the command. [...] - Apple HomeKit: Users can ask Siri to remotely start the shower, saying "Siri, turn on my shower," or "Siri, start preset 'Post-Workout Shower.'"U by Moen was initially shown off at CES 2017, with the smart capabilities managed through smartphone apps. CES 2018 saw the announcement of Alexa and Siri support for the "first half of 2018," but Siri integration obviously didn't arrive in that timeframe, so here's hoping this year's announced timing is a bit more on target. U by Moen is available at an MSRP of $1,225 for a two-outlet version or $2,265 for a four-outlet version, and that doesn't include any shower heads or installation by a plumbing professional, so it doesn't come cheaply. But for those who might already be

ConnectSense Launches Second-Generation HomeKit-Enabled Smart Outlet

ConnectSense, one of the first companies to introduce a HomeKit-enabled smart plug, today announced the launch of the Smart Outlet 2, its second-generation HomeKit product. Like the first Smart Outlet from ConnectSense, the Smart Outlet 2 features two separately controlled outlets that replace a standard set of sockets along with a 2.4A USB port for charging iPhones and iPads. The Smart Outlet 2 connects to WiFi, so no hub is required. In addition to HomeKit, it also works with Amazon and Google smart home systems. Each one of the Smart Outlets can be used to control a separate appliance or device, adding on/off functionality through the ConnectSense app, the Home app, and Siri voice commands. With the ConnectSense app, the Smart Outlet 2 also provides details on power consumption and lets you know how long a device has been plugged in. Through HomeKit, the ConnectSense Smart Outlet 2 can be added to scenes alongside other HomeKit products and automations can be created to have devices and appliances come on at a specific time. ConnectSense's Smart Outlet 2 can be purchased from the ConnectSense website and from Amazon.com for $59 starting

Ikea's Trådfri Smart Plugs Can Be Purchased in the US and UK, But HomeKit Compatibility Isn't Available Yet

Ikea's much-anticipated Trådfri smart outlets are now available for purchase in both the UK and the United States, providing a super affordable soon-to-be HomeKit-compatible smart plug solution for those who want to take advantage of HomeKit without spending a lot of money. The Trådfri smart plug can be purchased for just $9.99 (or GBP9.99 in the UK), which is much cheaper than other HomeKit-enabled smart plug options on the market. Unfortunately, while HomeKit support is in the works for the Trådfri smart plug, it isn't available just yet. An Ikea employee on the Trådfri team said yesterday on Reddit that HomeKit integration wasn't able to be implemented ahead of when the smart plug was released. HomeKit support is in the works, however, and in the meantime, the smart plug can be controlled via the Trådfri app. Using the Trådfri smart plug requires the $30 Trådfri Gateway. The Gateway is needed for all of Ikea's affordable smart home solutions, including light bulbs, dimmers, motion sensors, and more. There's no word on when HomeKit support will be available for the Trådfri smart plug, but HomeKit was added for Trådfri smart lights connected to the gateway late last year. When HomeKit is available for the smart plug, the Trådfri system will be one of the cheapest ways to get a complete set of HomeKit products even with the expense and inconvenience of a hub. The Trådfri smart plug was spotted on the Ikea website back in early October, but as Pocket-lint points out, it did not become available for purchase until