With more news about Apple’s HomeKit home automation framework expected to be announced at next week’s Worldwide Developer Conference, it’s not surprising that the company has published a new support page detailing how the Apple TV can be used as a remote access hub for controlling HomeKit accessories.
The support page notes that HomeKit can be used with any “Works with Apple HomeKit” accessories in a home, including lights, locks, thermostats and smart plugs. Interestingly, Apple does not appear to be releasing a “one app to rule it all” for HomeKit accessory control, rather telling consumers to “go to the App Store and download the app for your HomeKit-enabled accessory.”
There’s a simple pairing process that is used to pair the accessory and the iOS device, which each HomeKit accessory being equipped with a 7-digit code. Opening the app for the accessory and entering the code results in pairing over the network.
Once pairing is complete, Siri commands can be used to control the accessories. Apple’s document shows commands like “set the temperature to 68” or “turn off the lights in the living room” as examples. However, the support page does point out that Siri cannot be used to unlock doors.
Where the Apple TV comes into play (3rd-generation or later) is when you’re away from home, as it becomes a hub for controlling all HomeKit accessories in a home. The Apple TV needs to be running software version 7.0 or later, and the same Apple ID must be used to sign into both the iOS device and Apple TV.
HomeKit will most likely be a big topic of discussion during the next week. Be sure to bookmark Apple World Today for all of your WWDC 2015 news.