May 25, 2024

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Best devices for getting started with HomeKit 2021

6 min read

devices for getting started with HomeKit

If you are all-in with Apple and want to begin building the smart home of your dreams, then Apple’s HomeKit is the absolute best way to go. HomeKit brings all of your smart home devices under one roof — the Home app on your iPhone. HomeKit also enables powerful automation capabilities that work regardless of the brand of your device. Whether it is HomeKit light bulbs, door locks, sensors, or cameras, here’s our guide to the best HomeKit devices to help start your smart home off right.

Homepod Mini Space Gray

Smart start:
Apple HomePod mini

Staff Pick

Apple’s HomePod mini is the best place to start with your smart home journey as it works as a smart speaker and a HomeKit hub. As a HomeKit hub, the HomePod mini unlocks HomeKit power features like automation, and with a Thread radio inside, you can add compatible smart home devices in seconds.

Eve Energy Smart Plug

Plug in:
Eve Energy – Apple HomeKit Smart Home, Smart Plug & Power Meter

The Eve Energy smart plug turns almost anything instantly smart. With a simple plug-and-play design, you can add smart app and voice control to fans, heaters, lamps, and so much more. This smart plug also features energy monitoring capabilities, and it supports the latest connectivity standard — Thread.

Ecobee Smart Thermostat

Climate control:
ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control

One of the best upgrades you can make to your home is adding a smart thermostat — and ecobee’s SmartThermostat is the best HomeKit option around. This thermostat sports all of the essentials like schedules and remote control, and it also functions as a hands-free Siri device if you have a HomePod mini in your home.

Nanoleaf Essentials A19 Bulb

Affordable color:
Nanoleaf Essentials A19 Smart Thread Bluetooth LED Bulbs – White and Colors

Nanoleaf’s Essentials A19 light bulb adds millions of fun colors and HomeKit convenience to your smart home. Nanoleaf’s bulb takes advantage of Thread networking which enables fast response times, excellent reliability, and instant pairing with a HomePod mini. This bulb also supports the latest HomeKit features like Adaptive Lighting so that you can try the future, today.

Lutron Caseta Wireless Smart Lighting Starter Kit with remote, switch and hub

Whole home lighting:
Lutron P-BDG-PKG1W Caseta Wireless Dimmer Kit with Smart Bridge

If you plan to upgrade all of your home’s lighting, then replacing your existing light switches with Lutron’s Caseta Wireless line is the best way to go. This starter kit includes an in-wall dimmer switch that is compatible with the wiring in most homes, a handy remote, and a Smart Bridge, which offers incredibly reliable performance for up to 50 devices.

Level Lock

Lock down:
Level Bolt Smart Lock – Bluetooth Deadbolt

Unlike most smart door locks, the Level Bolt Smart Lock hides all of the connected goodies neatly inside of your door. The invisible design allows for convenient key-free locking with your iPhone while keeping everything discreet since it lacks a bulky keypad. Also, since it uses your existing door hardware, you can install it in less than an hour.

Logitech Circle View Doorbell

Who’s there?:
Logitech Circle View Apple HomeKit-Enabled Wired Doorbell with Logitech TrueView Video

Logitech’s Circle View Doorbell keeps an eye on your precious packages and provides timely notifications whenever a visitor arrives. Since it works with HomeKit, you can use your HomePods as additional doorbell chimes, and you can watch all of the action on the big screen if you have an Apple TV.

Aqara Hub M1S, temperature sensor, motion sensor, and door and window sensor

DIY security:
Aqara Smart Hub M1S Plus Aqara – Temperature and Humidity Sensor

This smart home bundle from Aqara brings affordable DIY security to all. This set includes a motion sensor that monitors rooms indoors, while a contact sensor lets you know when a window or door opens. This kit also includes a bonus temperature sensor — perfect for automating your home’s heating and air.

$100 at Amazon

Meross Smart Wifi Garage Door Opener

Never forget:
meross Smart Garage Door Opener Remote – Compatible with Apple HomeKit

The meross Smart Garage Door Opener gives you a little extra peace of mind while out and about with the ability to open and close your garage door from anywhere in the world. This device works with over 200 garage door opener brands and only takes a few minutes to install, so you will never have to worry about whether you left the door open again.

Eufy Indoor Cam Pan 2K

Watchful eye:
eufy Security Solo IndoorCam P24 – Indoor Camera

Perfect for monitoring your home indoors, the eufy Indoor Cam Pan allows for remote check-ins while still providing privacy while chilling at home. This camera sports gorgeous 2K image quality, and the motorized pan and tilt controls offer an expanded view over fixed wireless cameras.

Eve Button lying down on a white surface

Remote control:
Eve Button – Apple HomeKit Smart Home Remote to Command Accessories and Scenes

Sometimes having a physical control, like the Eve Button, on the wall is just plain quicker and easier to use. This smart button supports three actions — a single press, double press, and a long press, so you can assign controls for turning on and off the lights, as well as setting a favorite scene, all without having to dig out your phone.

Onelink Safe And Sound Render Cropped

Safety first:
First Alert Onelink Safe & Sound – Smart Hardwired Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm and Premium Home Speaker

The Onelink Safe & Sound from First Alert combines smoke and Carbon Monoxide detection with a powerful, AirPlay 2 compatible speaker. Smoke detection and CO capabilities mean you will always know the status of your home, even when afar, and the onboard speaker works as part of a whole-home audio setup.

Start your smart home journey off right with the best HomeKit devices

If you want to give your home a hassle-free smart home upgrade, then HomeKit is the best place to start for Apple fans. HomeKit makes it easy to add app and Siri voice control to your home by combining all of your smart home devices under one roof — the Home app on your iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.

If you are just starting out, Apple’s HomePod mini should be the first thing on your list. Apple’s smart speaker offers hands-free music playback and smart home controls, and it also works as a HomeKit — and Thread hub. By acting as a HomeKit hub, the HomePod mini opens the doors to automation, scenes, schedules, remote out-of-home controls, and so much more. Plus, with the inclusion of Thread, the HomePod mini is about as future-proof as you can get.

Want to test the HomeKit waters before diving head-first? The Nanoleaf Essentials A19 Light Bulb and the Eve Energy Smart Plug work with HomeKit right out of the box; no accounts, app downloads, or hubs needed. These smart devices support connectivity over both Bluetooth and Thread, so you can start small by using just your iPhone while still having to option to increase reliability and range in the future by picking up a HomePod mini or other Thread Border Router.

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