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Apple’s HomeKit and how it works in a nutshell

Apple’s HomeKit

Home automation might prove to be the dark horse of technological innovations. And Apple is one of the few firms that are capitalizing on it. It introduced its version of home automation with HomeKit back in 2014 and ever since then it has been steadily growing in the market. Though it’s not very popular at present but the chances are high that it will become popular in future. Here are a few things that you should know about it.
What exactly is HomeKit?

HomeKit is a highly advanced IoT (Internet of Things) framework. The aim of all IoT frameworks is to make the simple household devices have internet access and to get them connected to each other. With HomeKit the user can realize this aim very easily. It enables the user to operate devices like light bulb, door lock, thermostat, air conditioner, security cameras and electricity switches through phone.

How does it work?     

To be able to use HomeKit the first thing that you need is an Apple device like Iphone, Ipad or Ipod which has either iOS8 or iOS9 installed in it. And along with that you need a household accessory like a window or an air-conditioner which is compatible with HomeKit. All you have to do is plug in both your device and your accessory, and then after a simple setup you can directly use your accessory through your device. With iOS9 you can even operate accessories at your house from outside as it connects to your devices using secure networking over ICloud.

How to operate it?

If you have a device with HomeKit then the best thing for you would be to buy the Home app for it though its easy enough to operate it using Siri. Here are some of the simple phrases using which you can operate your accessories through Siri.
“Turn on the lights of the living room.”

“Tell me what the humidity of this room is?”

“Turn on the Television.”

Here as some of the complex ones:

“Set up for a party Siri”

“This is Halloween”

Siri is highly customizable and it will soon adapt to your personality and offer better response.

Third Party Apps: getting everything together

Many third party apps are available for HomeKit. Right now the Home app is considered to be the best of the bunch. It is a third-party app developed by Mattias Hochgatterer and it costs about 12$ at present. But it’s well worth the money. Using it you can see the status of all your HomeKit devices at once. It allows you to add new items and to configure the ones that you already have. Using HomeKit becomes very easy if you have home app. Otherwise you either have to use Siri or the apps that come along with the hardware.

If you don’t want to spend too much money on a third party app then you can buy MyTouch Home by Romain Henry. It costs only 2$. It has a very interactive interface and but it becomes a little difficult to use if you have too many devices.

Some devices that you can use with HomeKit
August Smart Lock

If you have a smart lock then there’s no need for you to carry your key. You can unlock the August Smart Lock by simply using your phone. You can also share the key whenever you with your friends (if they have a device that supports HomeKit). It also tracks the record of people who went in and out of the house.

Elgato Eve

Elgato Eve provides a wider range of home monitoring systems. Its weather sensors monitor and display things like the air quality of your room, its humidity, temperature etc. And its energy sensors monitor the amount of energy that your electronic devices are using.

ecobee3 Smart Wi-Fi Thermostat

This thermostat uses wireless sensors to measure the temperature of the room and it makes you set your room temperature exactly as you want. By using complex algorithms it also helps in saving the electricity.

HomeKit hasn’t achieved its complete potential. It’s still in a developing phase. If the innovations in HomeKit keep progressing at the same accelerated rate then in future we will surely see some new accessories which might seem completely unimaginable now.

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