Apple steps into smart-home market, introducing HomeKit
“Apple Inc. will make a move into the smart-home market by introducing HomeKit, a platform that lets users control some connected appliances using an iPhone.
As we’ve written, the $290 billion Internet of Things market will start in your home, so everyone’s watching how Apple, Google Inc. and other tech companies jockey for position. HomeKit lets users group third-party apps that control various appliances into “scenes” on their iPhones. The apps then can be controlled individually using Siri’s voice control.
Apple senior vice president Craig Federighi, announcing the product at the company’s developer conference in San Francisco, said the HomeKit platform securely connects to devices on Wi-Fi to allow users to access Apple’s newly announced fingerprint-recognition feature to unlock doors or turn off the lights by telling Siri “goodnight.”
The downside is that these functions won’t be quite as centralized as some people in the industry were hoping. At least not yet. HomeKit doesn’t unify the dozens of individual connected-home apps into a single interface. That’s not necessarily surprising given the fragmented nature of the smart-home market. Many companies are generating many devices, standards and technologies that currently don’t talk to each other.
Last week, we wrote about Apple’s move to control connected devices in users’ homes, which was first reported by the Financial Times. With dozens of companies entering the connected-home market, the challenge is making a program that works seamlessly with each company’s proprietary system.” Eric Van Susteren Digital Producer-Silicon Valley Business Journal
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