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How Does Apple HomeKit Work?

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We are truly living in the age of technology, where innovations are being made across all sectors, and products are becoming more readily available to the mainstream. Finally, all of the best gadgets from our favorite films are coming to fruition. Apple’s new HomeKit, for example, makes Disney channel’s Smart House a virtual reality. As a one-stop-app for home security and accessibility, Apple’s HomeKit allows you to assemble all of your smart devices and monitor them virtually anywhere and anytime.

Think of the Apple HomeKit as the hive mind for all of the smart devices, or worker bees, you have hooked up around your home, from lighting to thermostats to motion detectors. This system lives inside the free Apple Home app and Siri voice commands

Those with iOS 10 or later can get acquainted with the app over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. To control your devices remotely at, say, the office, however, you will need EITHER:

  • A third or fourth generation Apple TV, running tvOS 9 or later OR
  • an iPad running iOS 10.

Not to put an end to the list of stipulations, it is also required that consumers who wish to share access to control their Apple HomeKit must have:

  • a fourth generation Apple TV with tvOS OR
  • an iPad running iOS 10.

So, despite the app being free, you can expect to dole out a hefty amount of money, depending on what you already own and what you must purchase to meet the system’s requirements. As with any technology in its infancy, there are limitations to what devices are compatible. The HomeKit must be compatible with the smart devices it is meant to coral. Brands like ecobee are programmed to jive with multiple smart systems, including HomeKit, Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa. Because it is not the only option for consumers, Apple’s HomeKit must be able to stand out from the competition.

Set-up is made to be beginner friendly, with features such as scan-able accessory codes. However, classifying accessories creating a homepage can be confusing. There are functions, groups and names necessary for Siri to correlate your commands to location, product, and action.

Then there are zones that are a compilation of multiple rooms, such as the downstairs zone consists of a bathroom, living room and kitchen, which are each listed as individual rooms. Once you have set up all of your phrasing and terminology for Siri to recognize, and your app to list, you can begin to reap the rewards. Forgot to lock the front door on your way to work? Simply speak into your iOS device remotely or tap the app to ease your mind. Besides the practicality of security features, HomeKit allows you to embrace your inner wizard and control your surroundings like you’ve graduated from Hogwarts!

Technology has certainly come a long way in such a short amount of time. For instance, in 1954 a Chevrolet was available for about the same price as a new, clunky, and imperfect advancement known as colored television. It wasn’t until upgrades were made and production became more streamlined that prices were able to drop and become a fixture in American households across the country.

We don’t know where smart technology will take us from here, or whether systems such as HomeKit will become as ingrained in the average household as the television, but when innovation is encouraged, we all benefit.