The whisperings that Apple HomeKit products would start arriving this week just went from rumor to reality. Over the weekend, there were rumblings that we’d see some gadgets compatible with Apple’s new smart-home platform debut, and that prediction came to fruition today with five new products on sale (or presale) now.
So how will Apple enable you to control your home? The debut products are lights, thermostats, sensors, hubs, and outlets, available from Lutron, ecobee, Elgato, Insteon, and iHome, respectively.
We know a little about how the Home app will control these products, and these releases give us a better view of how HomeKit will work. Here’s a breakdown of the new products:
Lutron’s Caséta Wireless Lighting Smart Bridge, which is part of the firm’s Lighting Kit, gives you control of your lights via Siri. Tell her to turn the lights off, or to let you know if you left the bedroom lamp on, and she’ll do as asked. You can also raise and lower your Lutron shades with the Bridge, which is available starting today at Amazon.com, Home Depot, Lowes, and Staples for $230.
Though there was much speculation that Apple TV would be the hub of Apple’s smart home, Insteon’s Hub can also act as your house’s brain. Tap devices to add them to the system, then make them all work in concert: Set a daily scene to switch on the fan and lights when you’re due home. You can pick one up today at Amazon.com and Smarthome.com for $150.
If you want to keep close tabs on your home, Elgato’s Eve room, weather, door and window, and energy sensors can give you information on air quality, temperature, and humidity, as well as let you know when someone opens your front door and which appliances are hiking up the electricity bill. Those go on sale today at Amazon and Walmart.
The ecobee3 smarter Wi-Fi thermostat works for sensors, which you can stick in various rooms of your house in order to get readings on all their data. The $249 device will ship later this month.
Almost any device can become smart with iHome’s iSP5 SmartPlug. Connect any ordinary lamp or coffee maker, and you can start controlling it with iHome’s app. If you have several lamps connected to several plugs, you can control them all, turning off all the living room lights at once, for example. Pre-order starts June 15.
This year’s Worldwide Developers Conference starts June 8, so we’ll likely get even more information about new products and the HomeKit itself. And of course these five products are just the first wave: other companies have been touting their own plans for HomeKit compliance, so expect door locks, garage openers, and security cameras to join the mix.
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