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CES 2019 – HomeKit News Updates

So….We’ve only just had CES 2019 launch and already HomeKit fans have been bowled over by the sheer amount of devices, updates and new functionality that has been announced. Given that Apple have deemed it wise to make their own appearance via an invite-only press conference for a selection of news outlets to announce all the HomeKit/Airplay news on behalf of many additional manufacturers and partners, it would seem the tide has turned somewhat for HomeKit – not that it was ever in any real danger of vanishing any time soon, but considering all the products that work with Google Home and Amazon Alexa, as a user of Homekit products, one was feeling a bit left behind. Still, this is 2019, and there’s already plenty to talk about, so let’s have a look at all the announcements so far.

Honeywell T-Series Smart Thermostats and Sensors

  • All new Thermostat designs to work on a room-by-room basis

  • Advanced smart sensors with people detection (200ft range)

  • Control the temperature in any room at any time

  • HomeKit compatibility coming later in 2019

Lutron Ceiling Fan

  • Designed to add smart control to your existing standard fan

  • Works with Lutron’s Caseta hub – no mention of connection to HomeKit at present

  • Works with a single 1.5A ceiling fan

  • Neutral wire required, unlike their Caseta line of Smart light switches

First Alert announce update to their Safe & Sound Smoke Alarm/Speaker

  • Will be HomeKit compatible, as per the first version, as well as Google Assistant or with Amazon Alexa built inBuilt-in

  • Airplay 2 speaker for multi-room audio

  • The 2019 model will feature WiFi mesh technology to allow for expanded connectivity

TP-Link Kasa Smart Plugs to gain HomeKit compatibility

  • Already compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and even Microsoft Cortana

  • HomeKit integration will come via a (we presume) Firmware update for Software Authentication

HomeKit coming to Arlo Pro and Arlo Ultra Cameras

  • Arlo Ultra combines a 4K Wire free security camera and HomeKit compatible hub

  • Black and white, or colour night vision, thanks to an integrated Infrared Spotlight

  • Arlo hub will also work with Z-wave and Zigbee devices – presumably acting as a hub for these devices too

  • Both the Arlo Pro and Ultra will gain HomeKit support by an OT update later this year

Brilliant Home Control to gain HomeKit support

  • First released in late 2018, the Smart Home control switch will add HomeKit compatibility this Spring

  • Already compatible with the usual platforms – Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant,  but also Nest, Ecobee, Honeywell, Ring, August, Philips Hue, Sonos, and Wemo.

  • Capable of music playback (no mention of Airplay 2 yet), stream video (currently via Ring Doorbell cams for example), and of course control lights

  • OTA firmware update for current models expected in Q2 2019

HomeKit support update for ‘U by Moen’ Smart Shower

  • Already compatible with Alexa, with HomeKit and Google support due this Spring

  • Allows voice control of the shower – start, stop, pause and even preset ‘scenes’ for different preferences, including temperature


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