I've been waiting for Apple create its latest mini site since I first heard the word "HomeKit" way back in 2014. The site, lovingly nestled within the iOS section of Apple's site features a fun film that shows off some of the cool stuff you can do with HomeKit-enabled accessories, Siri, and the iOS Home app. Personally, I think the gal in the video has way too many HomeKit scenes, but that's neither here nor there.
If you're curious, you can check out the page at the following link. If you wanna know what you're getting yourself into first, read on!
So what's this mini site all about?
It's all about HomeKit, the Home app, and HomeKit-enabled accessories. This site is dedicated to not only explaining what the heck that little orange, house-shaped tile on your iPhone is for, it's dedicated to explaining the benefits and possibilities of home automation with HomeKit and the Home app.
You can get a brief overview of the Home app, learn about HomeKit scenes, Siri voice control, HomeKit automations, HomeKit-enabled accessories, and home hubs.
Can't I get that right here on iMore?
HOW FUNNY! I was hoping you were going to ask that! Yes, yes you can.
I'm gonna let you in on a little secret, though: You should still check out Apple's site, 'cause it'll be one of the places I regularly check when I'm writing about HomeKit news.
Does the site help me set up HomeKit accessories?
Yup! It can be a little tricky setting up HomeKit-enabled accessories (mostly because they typically require third-party app set up before HomeKit set up), so Apple's linked to a support article with loads of information about setting up your various gadgets in the Home app.
What else does the site feature?
Uh, only a dream come true (for me, anyway)! There's now a page that shows all the HomeKit-enabled accessories approved by Apple. The page is beautifully designed and split into accessory type, so you can tap (or click) to jump to a specific section.
The list has links to the various accessories (YESSSS!) and offers up information about their availability. The availability tags include Announced and Coming Soon. It's not entirely clear what they mean, but we can use context clues to decipher:
- Announced: Either the product has been announced for the first time or HomeKit compatibility has been announced. I get the impression this means it'll be awhile before we see the product available for purchase.
- Coming soon: I take it this is a step above "Announced". The product (or HomeKit compatibility) is right around the corner. I wish I knew the exact timeframe, 'cause there are a few accessories on the list I'm eyeballing.
Nope, that's pretty much it! But it's a whole heck of a lot, to be honest. Apple's list of HomeKit-enabled accessories used to be buried in its vast Apple Support database. The page was a long, bulleted list (without links!) of available HomeKit-enabled accessories — upcoming accessories weren't listed. It also wasn't updated as often as HomeKit-enabled gadgetry was hitting the market.
This dedicated mini site coupled with Tim Cook describing his personal HomeKit setup in the last Apple earnings call gives me hope and loads of excitement for the future of HomeKit and Apple's Home app. I love having a connected home and it's clear Apple is committed to making the smart home all the more awesome.
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