Apple apparently plans to re-release its update to the underlying architecture of its HomeKit home-automation system in the near future. The upgraded platform for the Home app is included in the latest iOS and iPadOS betas.
The company briefly made this update available to all users in December before withdrawing it due to unspecified problems.
The once and future Apple Home architecture update
HomeKit is Apple’s proprietary home-automation system. A wide array of accessories work with HomeKit, from light bulbs to smart safes. It’s controlled through the Home app that comes preinstalled on iPhone, iPad, etc.
iOS 16.2 and the iPad equivalent promised “a new underlying architecture that will improve the performance of your home.” Except that, for many users, it did the opposite. Apple was forced to withdraw the HomeKit update after too many people who’d installed ran into problems.
Now it’s back … but only in beta. The latest pre-release versions of iOS 16.3 and iPadOS 16.3 give users the option to update their HomeKit hub and accessories to test the new underlying architecture.
It’s possible the new architecture will be available before the release of either 16.3 version. It could be part of an expected iOS and iPad OS 16.2.1 bug-fix release.
In the meantime, those who have smart-home problems because they installed the update before Apple pulled it should turn to a support document. It can help access a home or accept an invitation in the Home app if there’s an issue.