iOS 9 reportedly includes new ‘Home’ app for controlling HomeKit smart devices

homekit slide

Enhancements to Apple’s HomeKit are expected to be among a flurry of software and platform advances in tow for the Worldwide Developers Conference next month. According to sources, the Cupertino company is thought to be announcing a new app in iOS 9 called Home for managing and controlling HomeKit-certified accessories for the connected home, 9to5Mac learned Wednesday.

“Using Siri or the Home app, users will be able to remotely control parts of their homes directly from iOS devices,” author Mark Gurman wrote. The icon for the app reportedly uses a “house” glyph atop a dark yellow background.

The fairly limited software is said to provide the following features:

  • Wirelessly discovering and setting up compatible HomeKit devices
  • Creating a virtual representation of rooms in the home to easily organize and connect HomeKit devices
  • Utilizing the Apple TV as a hub connecting all of the HomeKit devices
  • Offering a series of screens to help users find new HomeKit devices and apps

If the app is not released, Apple could reportedly nudge customers into controlling their HomeKit devices solely via Siri and accompanying App Store apps.

Despite reports to the contrary, Apple has confirmed that it is “looking forward” to first HomeKit-certified accessories “coming next month.”

HomeKit diagram 001

WWDC kicks of with a keynote on June 8.

The developer-only event could serve as a launchpad for a slimmer next-generation Apple TV hardware, rumored to include a faster processor, a fancy remote with touch control, tight Apple Watch integration, Siri, support for downloadable apps and games and other perks.

San Francisco, the Apple Watch’s system font, was reported earlier today as making its way into iOS 9 and OS X 10.11, the next major iterations of Apple’s mobile and desktop operating systems to be detailed at WWDC.

In addition, a major Watch OS update could be announced at or ahead of next month’s event, featuring custom third-party watch face Complications and a Find My Watch security feature to remotely lock or wipe your stolen Apple Watch.

Other rumored Watch OS features include health and fitness related improvements (such as alerts on irregular heart beats), enhanced Wi-Fi performance and tighter integration with third-party applications.

Source: 9to5Mac