Apple discards doorbells from HomeKit accessories list

Ask not for whom the doorbell tolls.

Lori Grunin
Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
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The August Doorbell Cam, which was supposed to be one of the few HomeKit-compatible doorbells, told a disappointed owner in March that there would be no HomeKit support.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

It's been pretty tough thus far to get Apple HomeKit to answer your doorbell, and now it looks like Apple's dropped the entire category from its list of HomeKit-compatible accessories. The HomeKit doorbell support from the two high-profile companies who promised it at launch  -- August and Ring -- never materialized, though it's not clear where the issues lie. 

Ring last provided a status update last month on Twitter, the latest in a long line of delays, despite having been acquired by Amazon in April

And a disappointed customer on Reddit reports getting an email in March from August stating "Currently, we do not have plans to have HomeKit for our doorbell cameras. If anything does change in the future, we will announce it on our website: www.august.com/blog."

But the disappearing category really isn't a mystery. August's aforementioned decision to drop HomeKit support for the near future meant it was removed from the compatibility list. Since it was the only doorbell on the list, removing it meant taking down the category link rather than leaving the page empty. When the bells start ringing for HomeKit again, the category should reappear. We still don't know why August decided against implementing HomeKit, though.

August declined to comment.

Updated 3:15 p.m. ET: Ring confirmed that the cited tweet is still the most current information.

Updated 5:15 p.m. ET with an explanation of how the doorbell category dropped off Apple's site.