Robin ProLine Becomes First Doorbell to Support HomeKit Secure Video

Dutch company Robin Telecom today announced that its Robin ProLine doorbell is the first to support HomeKit Secure Video, allowing the camera to capture and store recordings securely in iCloud.


With help from an Apple TV, HomePod, or iPad set up as a home hub, the ProLine doorbell can intelligently detect when motion from a person, animal, or vehicle is captured and store a recording in iCloud. When activity is detected, users will instantly receive a push notification on their iPhone or iPad and can play video clips right from the Lock screen or in the Home app.

With end-to-end encryption, HomeKit Secure Video is billed as a safer option than storing recordings on the servers of third-party accessory makers. A demo of the feature from an Apple Store was recently shared by Zach Truskowski.


HomeKit Secure Video is only available to users that pay for 200GB or more of iCloud storage, starting at $2.99 per month. Users with the 200GB plan can store 10 days of recordings from one camera in iCloud at no extra cost, while those with a 2TB plan can store 10 days of recordings from up to five cameras. HomeKit Secure Video recordings do not count towards a user's iCloud storage usage.

To update the doorbell's firmware, update the Robin ProLine app to version 1.6.0 or later and tap on the gear icon in the ProLine accessory to open the Details page. Tap on "update firmware" followed by "start firmware update."

Priced at €599 in Europe, the Robin ProLine features 720p video recording, a 130-degree viewing angle, IP53-rated water and dust resistance, and a brushed aluminum finish available in space gray, silver, or black.

While several other HomeKit Secure Video doorbells have been announced, the Robin ProLine is the first to support the feature.


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CES 2020: August Debuts Smaller and Sleeker Wi-Fi Smart Lock With HomeKit Support and No Bridge Required

August today introduced a new HomeKit-enabled Wi-Fi Smart Lock. As the product name implies, the lock features built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, eliminating the need to use a bridge that was previously required.


August says the Wi-Fi Smart Lock is 45 percent smaller and 20 percent slimmer than its Smart Lock Pro. Available in matte black and silver, the lock also sports a sleeker design with more rounded edges.

As with other smart locks, the Wi-Fi Smart Lock allows you to lock or unlock a door remotely and grant access to family members, friends, and trusted visitors. And with the Activity Feed, you can know who is coming and going at any time, complete with push notifications. There are also auto-lock and auto-unlock features.

HomeKit support allows the lock to be controlled through the Home app on an iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple Watch, or with Siri voice commands. For example, on an iPhone or HomePod, you could say "Hey Siri, lock my front door." The lock also supports Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and a few other platforms.

Installing the Wi-Fi Smart Lock takes less than 10 minutes, according to August. The lock can be installed on the inside of your door over your existing deadbolt, without touching the outside lock, allowing you to keep your existing deadbolt and keys. August door locks are compatible with most single cylinder deadbolts.

August says the Wi-Fi Smart Lock will soon be available to purchase on its website, but it has yet to reveal an exact release date or pricing. Interested customers can sign up to be notified when it is available.


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CES 2020: Bosch Smart Home System to Support Apple HomeKit Later This Year

Global home appliance company Bosch has announced that its smart home products are about to gain broad support for Apple's HomeKit platform.


In a press release titled "New Year, New Perspectives," the German company said that in combination with iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, and HomePod, its Bosch Smart Home System would soon offer numerous operating options, including interaction with other HomeKit-compatible devices.
The Apple Home App will soon be able to control the Bosch Smart Home System... After the voice services from Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant have been integrated during the course of 2020, the Bosch Smart Home System will also be conveniently controllable via Siri, Apple's voice assistant.
The announcement was short on specifics, but it's worth mentioning that the Bosch Smart Home system is a platform for shutters, light fittings, thermostats, intelligent alarms and other accessories, so there are plenty of reasons to throw ‌HomeKit‌ support into the mix. Whether that support will extend to home appliances like fridge-freezers and ovens remains to be seen.

Also this year, Bosch said it would offer an open interface for selected third-parties that would enable them to integrate Bosch Smart Home devices into their own solutions via a cloud API.

Bosch said the integration would mean partner apps would be able to control the devices and services, which would ultimately allow for "a safer life and an optimized living environment." The first partner apps are expected in the spring and will be able to control Bosch Smart Home cameras, the company said.


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CES 2020: LIFX Unveils New Filament Bulbs, Switches, Candle Bulbs, and Light Strips

LIFX, known for its line of HomeKit-connected lights and accessories, is debuting several new products at CES, ranging from bulbs to light strips, with highlights below.

LIFX Filament


LIFX's new filament bulbs are an answer to the Hue filament bulbs that came out in late 2019. The ST64 Teardrop debuted at CES, but LIFX also plans to make a G95 Globe bulb. The bulbs are HomeKit-enabled and are available in a single warm white color. LIFX plans to debut the filament bulbs in the spring of 2020 and they're expected to be priced at $30.


LIFX Switch


The LIFX Switch is a small wall accessory equipped with four switches to control both dumb and smart LIFX bulbs. It's designed to replace a four-gang bank of light switches with one installation, and it wires into an existing light switch setup. The LIFX Switch is priced at $120 (though there will be a $20 launch discount) and is set to debut in the spring of 2020.


LIFX Z 360 Kit


The LIFX 360 Kit is a 360 degree Light Strip setup that's meant to make it easy to run a light strip along the back of a TV. It features corner connectors and LED strip pieces optimized for TVs. There's also a separate LIFX Z Gamer Kit for gaming monitors. The LIFX Z 360 Kit is priced at $100, while the gamer kit is priced at $70. These kits will be available in stores in the spring of 2020.


Candle White to Warm


The LIFX Candle White to Warm joins the previously announced LIFX Candle Color, offering tunable white light in a candelabra bulb. It can connect to HomeKit and can be adjusted with the LIFX app. The Candle White to Warm will cost $30 and it's expected to launch in the spring of 2020.


Along with these products, LIFX is also planning to debut a new app experience in mid-January 2020 offering a more friendly design, better scheduling options, grouping of lights in the dashboard, and a Scenes and Effects section that saves user favorites.


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CES 2020: Sony Unveils New 4K and 8K TVs with HomeKit and AirPlay 2 Support

Sony today announced the upcoming launch of several new 2020 4K and 8K sets TV, including the 8H 8K LED, A8H and MASTER Series A9S OLED, and X950H and X900H 4K LED televisions.

All of the new TVs offer support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit. With ‌AirPlay‌ 2 support, the new TVs will be able to interact with other ‌AirPlay‌ 2 devices such as the HomePod or ‌AirPlay‌ 2-enabled speakers for multi-device whole home audio.


‌HomeKit‌ support allows the Sony TVs to show up in the Home app and respond to Siri voice commands for doing things like changing volume and turning the TV on and off.

Sony started rolling out ‌HomeKit‌ and ‌AirPlay‌ 2 support to some of its existing 2018 and 2019 TVs in December, but the 2020 models will support it out of the box. While the 2020 TVs will support ‌AirPlay‌ 2 and ‌HomeKit‌, there is no mention of Sony introducing the Apple TV app on Sony TVs.

According to Sony, the 2020 TV lineup will include features that have previously been limited to the MASTER series models, with the company aiming to deliver a more immersive viewing experience. Features will include Sony's Picture Processor X1, Triluminos Display, Sound-from-Picture Reality, Netflix Calibrated Mode, and IMAX Enhanced for an IMAX experience at home.

A new feature called Ambient Optimization is also included for optimizing picture and sound quality in any environment, and all of the new TVs will use Sony's new Immersive Edge design concept with a minimalist stand.

TV sizes will range from 48 inches to 85 inches, with full details on each TV available via Sony's press release. Sony plans to introduce these TVs in the spring of 2020, and pricing will be available at that time.


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CES 2020: Lutron Debuts New Accessories for HomeKit-Compatible Caseta Line

Lutron is adding two new accessories to its Caseta line of HomeKit-enabled light bulbs and switches, introducing the Caseta Smart Motion Sensor and the Caseta Repeater.

The Smart Motion Sensor is designed to control lights and the Lutron Serena shades wirelessly, turning devices on and off when motion is sensed. One motion sensor is able to control any number of Caseta smart switches dimmers, fans, and smart shades.


According to Lutron, its motion sensor can detect motion three times better than competing products, with a 180-degree field of view. The wireless sensor can be mounted anywhere, and customized light levels can be set for each device controlled by the sensor. No charging is required, and there's a 10-year battery life.

The Caseta Repeater expands the range of the Caseta system by 60 feet when it's placed within 60 feet of a Caseta Smart Bridge. It works plugged in to any outlet, and works alongside the Plug-in Dimmer, which also functions as a repeater.


Lutron says the Caseta Smart Motion Sensor and Caseta Repeater will be available online at the beginning of February. The Motion Sensor will be priced at $50, while the Repeater will be priced at $75.


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CES 2020: Abode Launching Indoor-Outdoor Security Camera, Doorbell Version and HomeKit Support Planned

Abode today at CES 2020 in Las Vegas introduced a new security camera that can be used both indoors or outdoors.

The modular security camera has many commonly seen features like 1080p video recording, a 152-degree field of view, infrared night vision, motion sensing, facial recognition, a built-in microphone and speaker for two-way communication, and IP65-rated water and dust resistance.


Abode said it has submitted the camera for HomeKit certification, which would allow live video to be streamed in the Home app and for the camera to be controlled with Siri voice commands. It is unclear how long this process will take.

An included doorbell mount allows the camera to be installed flush against the door and powered by existing doorbell wiring, or a corded attachment can be used to mount the camera outdoors and have it powered by a standard outlet. Abode will also be releasing a model with a built-in doorbell button in the future.

The camera will be available for $199 starting in the first quarter of 2020.


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CES 2020: ADT Introduces New Video Doorbell and Security Cameras, HomeKit Support Coming Next Quarter

Home security company ADT today announced a new range of smart home products with forthcoming HomeKit support, including an indoor camera, outdoor camera, video doorbell, and Wi-Fi range extender that doubles as a doorbell chime. All are part of the new Blue by ADT brand, known as LifeShield until now.

ADT's doorbell features 1080p video recording, a 180-degree field of view, night vision, custom motion detection zones, two-way talk, a water-resistant design, and more. The biggest feature of all will be HomeKit support, as there are currently only a few video doorbells that support Apple's smart home platform.

From left to right: outdoor camera, video doorbell, and indoor camera

HomeKit support will allow users to receive an instant notification when someone rings the doorbell, leading to a live video stream in the Home app when tapped. HomeKit also means Siri support for controlling the doorbell with voice commands. Unfortunately, ADT will not be adding HomeKit or Google Assistant support to the doorbell until the second quarter of 2020, according to The Verge.

ADT's indoor and outdoor security cameras offer many of the same features as the doorbell, including 1080p video recording and two-way talk, but they have a slightly smaller 130-degree field of view.

All four products are available to pre-order starting today and will begin shipping before the end of January. The cameras and doorbell are priced at $199.99 each, while the Wi-Fi extender runs $49.99.

ADT says additional security system components, including a base, keypad, and sensors, will launch in spring 2020.


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Anker Adds HomeKit Compatibility to EufyCam2 Security Camera, HomeKit Secure Video Support to Follow

Anker has updated its EufyCam 2 and EufyCam 2C security cameras with Apple HomeKit support, allowing owners to use the Home app and Siri to control the smart devices.


You can check to see if your Anker HomeBase 2 and Eufy cameras have been automatically updated by launching the Eufy Security App. According to tech blog Macerkopf.de, if the updates have been successfully installed you'll see a new "‌HomeKit‌ Setup" menu item in the HomeBase 2 settings.

Once you've selected ‌HomeKit‌ Setup, you'll be asked if you want to add the accessories to the Home app. Click a few more times and you'll be able to add the HomeBase 2 Bridge and cameras to ‌HomeKit‌.

Don't confuse this update with the promised support for Apple's new HomeKit Secure Video feature, which allows the cameras to capture and store recordings securely in iCloud – Anker is still working on bringing this feature to its EufyCam system and that should follow soon.


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CES 2020: Sengled Unveils New Smart Light Bulbs and HomeKit-Compatible Hub

Smart lighting company Sengled has announced new additions to its smart lighting range, including an LED Edison Filament Bulb and a HomeKit compatible third-generation Sengled Smart Hub.


The new Edison Filament Bulb is a vintage addition to Sengled's lineup. The filament is visible through the clear bulb, providing a golden glow at a 2100K color temperature.

There are also new candle light bulbs with 16 million colors to choose from, including Smart LED E12 Candle Light Bulbs that are designed to fit in chandeliers, ceiling fans and night lights.

Sengled is also adding Smart Plug with Energy Monitoring to its lineup, converting traditional lamps and home appliances into smart devices. The plug monitors energy consumption of your plugged-in devices allowing closer energy management.

Meanwhile, the third-generation Sengled Smart Hub has received several enhancements including the addition of Apple ‌HomeKit‌ support, enabling owners to use Siri to control their smart devices. The new hub enables users to connect to over 64 smart lights and accessories and also supports Zigbee 3.0.

The Sengled Smart LED Edison Filament Bulb comes in a pack of two and costs $29.99, while the Sengled Smart LED E12 Candle Light Bulbs is priced at $24.99. The Sengled Smart Hub and the Sengled Smart Plug with Energy Monitoring retail at $29.99 and $19.99, respectively.


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