Apple's new iOS 10 is set to launch this fall and a number of neat features are in the mix, including a "Home" app for controlling HomeKit devices.
The connected home is getting smarter, and heavyweight companies such as Apple couldn't miss the party. Apple's Home app will serve as a centralized controller for HomeKit-enabled gadgets, something users have long been asking for. The app will enable users to rely on their iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch using Home as the single control solution for HomeKit gadgets.
The app is still in beta for now, which means that not all accessories are working just yet, but Apple should significantly polish the app and improve support by the time iOS 10 makes its way to the public this fall.
Taking a closer look at the Home app, the first impression is that it delivers a fast, simple and convenient solution for controlling all connected products within your home.
Upon opening the Home app, a main screen will display a list of favorite accessories and favorite Scenes, allowing users to get quick access to their preferred functionality. Users can customize the wallpaper of the application and rename their home from the Settings section. Inviting additional users is also quick and easy, granting them permission to control HomeKit devices through the app.
In the Rooms section, users can add new accessories and create new Scenes, which will work with all HomeKit-connected devices within the household. Accessories, meanwhile, can be individually controlled. Simply tapping on the name of an accessory in the list will display a range of options, depending on the accessory in question.
The iOS 10 Home app further offers a feature called Automation, which allows users to set HomeKit accessories to automatically perform certain actions depending on the time of day or the location. For instance, you can set the air-conditioning to turn on at a certain time so it's already cool by the time you get home.
You can use an Apple TV as a remote hub for HomeKit as well as enable an iPad to act as a hub and enable remote operation for HomeKit-connected devices. Supported HomeKit devices in iOS 10 include air-conditioning systems, humidifiers, air purifiers, heaters, doorbells, cameras and more.
Aside from the Home app, iOS 10 will also bring a slew of other changes, improvements and new features, including an unencrypted kernel that marks a major shift in Apple's practices.
If you'd like to try out the latest beta before the final version of the OS hits the scene, check our tutorial on how to get iOS 10 beta without a developer account.