Apple ramps up work on new smart-home software and devices beyond HomePod

Apple's HomePod
Apple’s HomePod

Mark Gurman for Bloomberg:

Apple Inc. is ramping up hiring for a team that is working on new smart-home software and devices in an effort to catch up in a field where Google and Inc. have dominated, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The company is seeking engineers to work in its Cupertino, California, headquarters and in San Diego as part of a group revamping Apple’s smart-home platform. The overhaul is designed to spur more outside accessory and appliance makers to connect smart-home products such as lights and garage doors with the iPhone and Apple’s voice-activated digital assistant, Siri. The team also is exploring the possibility of building new home devices beyond the HomePod speaker.

Apple has posted 15 job listings on its website since last month for engineers to work on the company’s platform, called HomeKit, smart-home devices and related software and has shared other listings on third-party job boards. The company has also been privately recruiting potential candidates from the internet-connected devices industry. Apple already has hired several new engineers and managers this year from Amazon, Qualcomm Inc. and other companies.

MacDailyNews Take: Better late than never! HomeKit is too confusing for averages users which is likely a big reason why why they don’t use it.


  1. I rarely disagree with MacDailyNews Take, but this time I do.

    The HomeKit integration works great and is straight forward, the issues seem to come in compatibility of devices, third parties not supporting HomeKit.

    Several Third Party devices say they run on Apple, but they only run on Apple as a stand alone App. If there is confusion, it’s with the branding on third party products. Joe users buy these things that don’t work with HomeKit and blame Apple because the package says it works with Apple.

    So Apple has a Branding issue with HomeKit vs. iOS compatibility. The Third Party products manufacturers are gaining market share by claiming Apple compatibility, when it only supports an iOS App through bluetooth or wifi, and they don’t have to follow Apples security standards.

    So how does Apple solve this, the Third Parties are lying by omission, but they do have an App.

    One thing Apple could do, is create canned shortcuts for all of the device apps and expose it within the HomeKit hub(iPad, ATV, HomePod). Create some generic hardware bridge for these devices with different protocol support?

    Market the HomeKit label better so consumers don’t buy the crap that doesn’t support it?

    All the above?

    1. Many trains have seemingly left the station Apple left behind. But Apple has just taken time to not rush things, noting others mistakes n put in its powers to do it right. No hurry, Apple will catch up n pass.

  2. If Apple is going to build it’s own HomeKit devices, I would have thought an Apple-built router would have been the center of all those devices. I’m going to get a new router soon and I’m wondering what I should go with. I am still considering buying Apple’s last Time Capsule but that might not be a good idea if I expect to keep it for at least five years. The newest NetGear Nighthawks or D-Link EXO routers look rather interesting and powerful so I will likely go in that direction.

    It’s a shame Apple gave up on selling their own routers as they were quite dependable for me for many years.

  3. Here in Belgium we see little progress for HomeKit. HomePod is not even officially for sale here.
    Voice based platforms are obviously important and I am also left wondering why Apple is so slow to further develop Siri and HomeKit-compatible tools.
    I just hope it’s because they’re getting ready to launch the revolutionary iAM.

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