HomeKit To Boost Home Automation Buzz

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If we could look into the future, what would we see? Would it be Jetson like? Could you pull into your driveway, pull out your iPhone 20 plus plus and say, "Siri, I'm home."

Your garage door opens automatically, because Siri said you were home. You walk in and all your lights turn on automatically because you have the ultra connected smart home of the future. Your thermostat has the house at a comfortable 69 degrees and the oven is preheating because once again "the house" knows you are home. Your 60 inch Apple TV turns on and has the game you recorded earlier from work is all set up ready to play when you are.

The "smart home" is still a buzz word but new technology from Apple and others is paving the way toward this Jetson like life style. Your thermostat, your refrigerator and your alarm clock will all work seamlessly together to make your life easier and safer.

The groundwork is just starting to be laid by companies like Apple, Google and Samsung. There is no clear winner yet but whoever comes up with the best ecosystem with great hardware and software will win the battle.

"The first platform to deliver a true 'killer app' will be the winner," said Mark Hung an analyst for Gartner. "Before picking a winning platform, we'll need to first determine what is the must have value that any of these solutions is purporting to deliver. The first one to do that wins."

HomeKit, Apple's smart home framework does not need a hub but will communicate with other devices by being on the same WiFi network and Siri will act as the command interface.

The first certified hardware to work with HomeKit is iDevices. iDevices has a Switch, which is a HomeKit enabled wall plug that lets Siri control anything that's plugged into it. Switch will be available for $50 in the next few months. iDevices has its own app that can create custom schedules and events that chain devices together. It also has its own cloud infrastructure for remotely accessing connected devices when you're not at home.

Many companies are betting big on Apple being the winner since many products are not supported by Android. Let the race begin.

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