There are plenty of apps and devices that support Apple’s HomeKit, however it’s currently a bit of a nuisance to keep track of them, especially if you have more than a few devices. The one thing missing in iOS is a unified way to manage all of your HomeKit-compatible devices.
Well folks, it looks like we might finally get that unified app with the launch of iOS 10 later this year. The information was spotted by MacRumors in a review on Amazon, which was supposedly written by an Apple employee. MacRumors says that it has verified that the person is indeed an Apple employee.
“As I work in marketing for Apple, we test many Smart Home devices, especially for iOS HomeKit integration … The next version of iOS due this fall will have a standalone ‘HomeKit’ app as well,” said the employee in the comment.
Of course, even though MacRumors has verified the leaker’s status as an Apple employee, that doesn’t mean that a standalone HomeKit app is a certainty — Apple could scrap its plans or delay the app before the launch of iOS 10.
Rumors of a standalone HomeKit app have surfaced in the past — Apple used a shell company last year to file a trademark for a HomeKit app icon, so we know that it’s at least thinking about what a standalone app might look like. It’s rumored that the app will simply be called “Home.” Apple in creating this app is also likely thinking about the competition. Google has its own internet of things platform, Brillo, as well as an internet of things hub-router combination, called OnHub. A completely comprehensive app for controlling IoT devices could definitely give Apple a competitive edge against the likes of Google. It could also bring together the entire HomeKit experience, which currently feels a little fragmented and underdeveloped.