Apple Announces Major HomeKit Improvements, Siri Coming to Third-Party Accessories

BY Mahit Huilgol

Published 7 Jun 2021

Apple has unveiled a slew of new and interesting HomeKit features. Starting now, Apple users can unlock their doors using iPhone or Apple Watch. The Apple Watch also supports a new intercom feature that will let you interact with video doorbells. Package detection is another useful feature that alerts you via iPhone or Apple Watch whenever the delivery guy drops a package at your doorstep.

The updated HomeApp on Apple Watch now lets you do more things without depending on iPhone. In addition, Apple has added new enhancements to HomeKit cameras. Earlier, HomeKit used to display a stream of your camera on the Apple TV. Now you can control devices shown in the stream directly. For instance, you can manage your garden lights directly via the HomeKit video stream. In addition, in-camera view, you will get an icon for “nearby” accessories alongside a multi-camera view.

Apple has announced that Siri will now be open for third-party devices. Soon we could see Siri-enabled accessories that will integrate with the Home app and open up new possibilities. Apple has also announced a new iCloud tier called iCloud Plus. The premium tier offers VPN, temporary email access, and, most importantly, unlimited storage for HomeKit security cameras.

As of now, users who have subscribed to a minimum of 200GB iCloud storage get free access to one stream. With iCloud Plus, users will have access to unlimited storage for HomeKit security cameras without paying extra. That said, we are not sure if the feature will be available on starting plans. We had hoped Apple would increase the iCloud free tier from the current 5GB. However, that didn’t happen. Lastly, Apple’s “Digital Legacy” program will let you choose who can access your data after you die.