| Cult of Mac

Why you won’t want to use iPad as a Home Hub with iOS 16

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You'll still be able to use iPad as a Home Hub when iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 come along, but will you want to?
You'll still be able to use iPad as a Home Hub when iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 come along, but will you want to?
Photo: Apple

The recent news that iPads won’t function as Home Hubs with iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 stands corrected. Apple now says they’ll work. But they won’t benefit from any new features in the revamped HomeKit and Home app.

And that’s likely to be a pretty big drawback.

Gain one-touch control of HomeKit scenes with Leviton’s updated switch

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Leviton's updated switch gives you one-touch control over HomeKit scenes.
Leviton's updated switch gives you one-touch control over HomeKit scenes.
Photo: Leviton

Following related May releases, Leviton said Wednesday orders will open soon on a new version of a popular accessory in its No-Neutral HomeKit Switch and Dimmer stable of products.

The Decora Smart Wi-Fi 2nd Gen Scene Controller Switch features four buttons that give you one-touch control over HomeKit scenes as well as smart devices.

New Wi-Fi smart plug for HomeKit keeps tabs on energy use

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A four-pack for $50 is a good deal for something that won't block other outlets, works with HomeKit and monitors energy.
A four-pack for $50 is a good deal for something that won't block other outlets, works with HomeKit and monitors energy.
Photo: TP-Link

A smart plug that takes up just a little space on your electrical outlet is great. But it’s even better when it lets you monitor your energy use. Such is the case with TP-Link’s new HomeKit-enabled Kasa Smart Wifi Plug Slim.

And at about $12.50 per plug in a four-pack, it’s a good deal on Amazon, too. It’s the only smart plug priced that low that works with HomeKit and monitors energy usage.

With iOS 16 you cannot use your iPad as a HomeKit hub

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Apple discussed its overhauled Home app and HomeKit at WWDC22.
Apple discussed its overhauled Home app and HomeKit at WWDC22.
Photo: Apple
WWDC22 - Brought to you by CleanMyMac X

Apple rebuilt its Home app from the ground up for iOS 16, ensuring it will make managing HomeKit a breeze and support the upcoming Matter home-automation standard.

But for those who’ve been using an iPad as a hub for HomeKit, the house party’s over as of iOS 16’s release.

Massive Home app makeover brings Matter support and more

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The Home app has been rebuilt from the ground up, Apple said at WWDC22.
The Home app has been rebuilt from the ground up, Apple said at WWDC22.
Photo: Apple
WWDC22 - Brought to you by CleanMyMac X

Among the many new products and features Apple showcased at WWDC22 came news of a revamped Home app for the HomeKit smart-home platform.

Arriving with iOS 16 later this year, the app is rebuilt from the ground up. Apple said it will be more efficient and reliable, especially for homes with many accessories. And it will support the new Matter smart-home technology standard.

Aqara offers a third, more-advanced smart lock for HomeKit and Home Key

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The Aqara Smart Door Lock D100 Zigbee works with HomeKit and Home Key.
The Aqara Smart Door Lock D100 Zigbee works with HomeKit and Home Key.
Photo: Aqara

Aquara launched its third and most-advanced smart lock for HomeKit and Home Key on Thursday, the D100 Zigbee.

Unlike the previously released N100 Zigbee and A100 Zigbee, which are handle locks, the new D100 is an automatic mortise lock that lets users open a door without pushing a handle or turning a knob.

It’s expected to roll out in more countries soon, but for now you can get it in parts of Asia and the Middle East. You can find more information about its distribution below.

What could be in store for the return of the big HomePod?

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The big HomePod could be back soon. But how pricey and how functional will it be?
The beloved big HomePod could be back soon. But how pricey and how functional will it be?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple plans to produce an updated version of the HomePod as soon as the fourth quarter of 2022 or the first quarter of 2023, supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said Friday.

As reliable as Kuo can be, little other information exists beyond speculation. But that’s part of the fun.

A lot of folks are jonesing for an Apple smart speaker that goes beyond the HomePod mini. The original HomePod, while much more expensive, earned a great reputation for sound quality before Apple killed it in 2021. So naturally, Apple fans are interested in a successor, possibly with new features.

Leak shows new Ecobee SmartThermostat will pack air-quality sensor

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A hidden image in the updated iOS app shows the upcoming air quality monitor.
A hidden image in the updated iOS app shows the upcoming air quality monitor.
Photo: Ecobee

It appears Ecobee, the Canadian smart home accessories maker, will soon release a new version of its SmartThermostat with an air-quality sensor built right in.

The leak of the upcoming product came in the form of a hidden image in an update to the company’s iOS app.