After weeks of anticipation, Apple finally offered details on its smart home offering: HomeKit, a strategy designed to “bring some rationality to this space,” Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president for software engineering said at company’s Worldwide Developers Conference.
HomeKit is designed to unify the various, piecemeal experience in the connected home, with a variety of providers, systems and connectivity options under “a common network protocol,” Federighi said.
Specifics were scarce. Federighi said HomeKit will somehow allow iOS users to control their homes with their iPhones—and only their iPhones—to manage “locks, lights, cameras, doors, thermostats, plugs, switches.” The mobile device will offer secure pairing, and can control separate gadgets or set automations for groups of devices.
And it will be controlled via voice, thanks to integration with Apple’s Siri personal assistant. So you can change modes by saying “time for bed,” and your house will respond by bringing down the lights and locking the front door.
Federighi’s presentation focused mostly on features, not specifics, but we look forward to unpacking this protocol in the days ahead.