Nanoleaf

Nanoleaf’s LED Canvas light panels now work as smart home buttons for HomeKit devices

Select a Canvas square panel, assign it an action in the Nanoleaf or Apple Home app, and then use the light to operate any HomeKit-enabled product by pressing on the light as a switch

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Nanoleaf's bright geometric light panels now pull double-duty as smart home remote controls. The LED lights can now operate products that run on HomeKit through a new feature called TouchActions, which are part of the Canvas Smarter Kit.

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To be clear, not all of Nanoleaf's lights will be able to operate as smart controllers, just those that are labeled as Canvas squares. WIth those, however, each panel can be programmed separately to operate a different HomeKit product, or even a scene.

Blue, light blue and white Nanoleaf square panels shaped into a whale You can program Nanoleaf Canvas into more than 16 millions of colorsNanoleaf

There are three different kinds of pressures that the panels can register, each allowing for a different option, from a single press to a double press and even a long press on the panel. People can choose which panel controls which action.

While expanding the way Nanoleaf Canvas can be used, these LED wall lights are not inexpensive. A 9-pack costs $229.99 and covers a small area. For those looking as these a remote control, there are likely more affordable options.

But for people who want the look of flat paneled colorful lights, this feature is a nice add. While the Canvas squares work with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit, the new features work only with the latter.

Square LED lights glowing red, orange and yellow on a wall Smart home devices must be HomeKit-enabled to work with the TouchAction featureNanoleaf

The devices controlled through the new TouchActions must be HomeKit-enabled, and people will need a Home Hub connection, which can be a HomePod, iPad or Apple TV, for example.

Touch Actions are then set up in the Nanoleaf app or the Home app through an iOS device. One push and a scene could start, turning on a fan, and even a coffee maker connected to a smart plug.

"Technology works best when it fits seamlessly into the routines of our daily lives," said Nanoleaf CEO and co-founder Gimmy Chu in a statement. "Touch Actions eliminates the extra steps of taking out your phone, unlocking, swiping, and tapping into the phone's app. Now, Nanoleaf users can create magical experiences across all of their HomeKit devices whether they're entertaining guests, relaxing at home, or hanging out with friends simply by tapping a Canvas square in their layout."

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