Last week, Apple released iOS 10. Included in the update was a new app called Home, which finally gave Apple's fractured HomeKit platform a central, unifying interface.
So we took the last week to integrate Home with over 50 accessories at the CNET Smart Home, set up and test over a dozen automations and scenes, and generally turn this beautiful space "smart."
The first task was integrating Home with window shades.
The CNET Smart Home has a lot of open spaces with good natural light, so we installed 12 smart shades to control with Home.
These smart shades from Lutron can cooperate with any other devices connected to Home. For instance, I connected one smart switch to all the shades, so I could open all the shades upstairs with one button press.
You can also control the shades using Siri. That includes specific commands, and using them as part of larger scenes.
The next project was connecting all of our lights to HomeKit via the Home app.
Because there were so many light fixtures in the home, we relied heavily on smart switches to control standard bulbs.
With 23 connected Lutron in-wall switches and remotes so far, both installing and connecting lights to the Home app definitely took the most time.
We've also used a couple smart plugs, like the iDevices Switch, for lamps with particular stylized bulbs.
Finally, we've installed 10 Philips Hue bulbs so far -- four white light and six color-changing. These are great fits for lamps and rooms where changing colors or color temperatures are a cool extra feature.
We also installed the new Apple TV in the living room. It allows for remote Siri control of the house -- so I can lock the doors while I'm driving to the office if I forgot to do it before leaving.
You can also control any of the Home-connected devices through Siri on the Apple TV. Just hold the remote to your mouth and talk to her like usual.
We also connected this recent addition to the smart home: the Beddi Smart Alarm Clock.
The scenes you set up in the Home app can be toggled with single button presses on the device. That means at bedtime, punching a single button could lock your doors, turn off all the lights, and close your shades.
Finally, we've installed three August Smart Locks at the CNET Smart Home -- and connected all three to Home. Now you can lock and unlock the doors with simple voice commands.
One cool feature with August control is that you still have to authenticate yourself on the iPhone before Siri will control your locks for you. It's a nice added safety feature.