Recently, I updated my review of the iSmartGate Homekit garage door opener to reflect how much more I am using it now that I have the Intellidash CarPlay unit in my car. I’ve stopped using the standard RF garage door opener with easy access to open and close my garage door from CarPlay. The usage spurred on some thinking about further integration with HomeKit and CarPlay.
HomeKit Weekly is a series focused on smart home accessories, automation tips and tricks, and everything to do with Apple’s smart home framework.
When you think about HomeKit usage day to day, much of it is when you’re coming and going from home. So from turning on your Philips Hue lights when you arrive to locking your August Lock when you leave, the more integrations we could get from HomeKit and CarPlay, the better for a seamless experience.
HomeKit alarm system integration
I’ve used the abode iota security systems for over two years at this point, and I am thrilled with the product, but also how it integrates with HomeKit. Because most of the sensors are exposed in HomeKit, automations can be created based on abode’s door sensors or motion sensors. An example of how I use the HomeKit integration is that the backyard lights turn on for a few minutes when the back door opens at night. We’re generally taking the dog, so we only need the lights on for a few minutes.
We have location-based rules set up in the abode app, but they aren’t always 100% accurate. For example, if CarPlay included a tile for a HomeKit alarm system, users could change states from home, away, and off from the driveway.
Door lock integration
Keeping with the same HomeKit alarm system integration trend, I’d also like to see a CarPlay tile for HomeKit compatible door locks. I use an August Lock, but it would also be perfect for a Level Lock. I have August’s location-based locking turned on, but like HomeKit alarms, it’s not always 100% accurate. With a CarPlay tile, I could verify the status of my HomeKit door lock and could open it manually if the auto unlocking failed.
With HomeKit scenes, a room full of lights can be activated with a single tap. In addition, CarPlay should add a way to bring up a particular scene when within the vicinity of your home, so you could turn on outdoor flood lights or entryway lights as you arrive home.
Home status with Siri
Finally, I like to see CarPlay offer a “home status” announcement when you arrive home. It might be something like this:
“Welcome home, Bradley. Your alarm is now off, your door is unlocked, and I’ve turned on entryway lights. Your ecobee thermostat reports that temperature inside of your home is 70 degrees and currently heating to 71 degrees”.
The more I use CarPlay with the Intellidash, the more I am convinced it should be further integrated with HomeKit. I use HomeKit every day, but I find the most frequent use it comes as I am coming or leaving my home. So hopefully, we’ll see further HomeKit and CarPlay integration with iOS 16 later this year.
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