We show you the best devices in each category
Amazon has Alexa. Google has Google Assistant. Apple has Siri. A lot of people might say Siri lags behind the other two assistants, but there are still many that swear by Apple’s HomeKit smart home system.
The one glaring downside to the Apple HomeKit system is the lack of widespread compatibility. Many devices (especially those made by third parties) do not work with Apple HomeKit, which limits the number of options users have.
But if you’re fully immersed in the Apple ecosystem already and you want your smart home to reflect that, never fear. We’ve put together a list of the best devices in each category for a HomeKit-powered smart home.
Best Smart TV For Apple HomeKit: Apple TV (Amazon)
Technically speaking, the Apple TV isn’t a smart “TV” as much as it is an accessory, but there are perks to this.
For starters, it’s much more affordable than a brand-new TV. You can plug it into any TV with an HDMI port and cast content straight from your phone or stream over any of the built-in apps. Newer versions of the Apple TV can even stream in 4K and sync with Bluetooth controllers to give even more control over the new Apple Arcade games. Apple TV has its own set of applications that make it worth looking into even if you already have a smart TV.
Something else to keep in mind is that Apple requires a HomeKit “Hub” to control the system remotely, but it doesn’t sell a standalone device for that reason. You need to use an iPad, Apple TV, or Apple HomePod to act as a hub, so investing in an Apple TV kills two birds with one stone.
Best Smart Lock For Apple HomeKit: August Smart Lock Pro (Amazon)
August is a proven brand that thousands of people rely on to keep their homes safe, and the August Smart Lock Pro improves upon the best features of previous generations.
You can tell Siri to lock or unlock your door and program the device to lock automatically after a set amount of time. The August Smart Lock Pro will even unlock when you approach – a huge benefit if you have your arms full of groceries.
Since everyone with access to the lock has an individual code, you’ll always know who is and isn’t home.
Installation requires only a screwdriver and about ten minutes of time. You don’t even need to remove your existing deadbolt; the August Smart Lock Pro will attach over the top of it. August has always been one of the best options for smart locks, and its Apple HomeKit compatibility makes it even better.
Best Smart Lights For Apple HomeKit: Philips Hue (Amazon)
Philips Hue is one of the most-recommended brands for smart lights due to their reputation and track record for producing great lights. A lot of Apple HomeKit products can feel like imitations of more mainstream brands, but Philips Hue works with HomeKit out of the box. Schedule your lights to turn on and off at different times, control them with Siri, and even use the lights as wake-up alarms.
If you have the Hue Color lights, you can ask Siri to change them to whatever color and shade you want. Philips Hue offers 16 million colors, as well as the ability to sync them with what you have on screen (if using a computer.) You can even make the lights pulse in time with music.
Philips Hue bulbs can be pricey, but if you want the best for your smart home system, it’s hard to go wrong with these smart lights.
Best Smart Plug For Apple HomeKit: Belkin WeMo (Amazon)
A lot of smart home products claim to be revolutionary, and to be fair, most do add a level of convenience to everyday life. Few devices come close to changing how everyday appliances work than a smart plug, however.
Smart plugs give you the ability to control the power to anything plugged into them. They’re perfect for operating a “dumb” lamp or coffee pot. The Belkin WeMo is Apple HomeKit compatible and slim enough that it doesn’t dominate your entire wall outlet.
You can schedule times for appliances to turn on and off, check whether something is powered on (no more forgetting about a curling iron or space heater), and even activate “Away Mode”, a setting that turns lights on at random times to look like someone is moving throughout the home. Many smart plugs are bulky, but the WeMo’s slender design makes it one of the best picks for an Apple HomeKit system.
Best Smart Speaker For Apple HomeKit: Apple HomePod (Apple)
There are too many generic smart speakers to count, and while a lot of those work with HomeKit, none come close to the audio fidelity or power of the Apple HomePod.
The smart speaker never gained mass-market appeal due to its high price point and limited functionality, but for HomeKit users there is no better option. The HomePod has incredible sound quality and a six-microphone array that lets it hear you from anywhere in the room.
The HomePod will be the beating heart of a HomeKit smart home. Through it, you can ask Siri to play music, control the lights, lock the door, and stream your favorite content to the Apple TV.
In an Apple HomeKit system, the HomePod takes the place of the Amazon Alexa or Google Home—and while Siri doesn’t yet compete on the same level as the other two smart assistants, a steady stream of improvements make her a solid choice nonetheless.