Almost three years after first promising to bring Apple HomeKit support to its video doorbells, Ring now has HomeKit certification.
The company's Video Doorbell Pro and Spotlight Cam both now appear when searching for certified devices in Apple's Made for iPhone (MFI) database. While this doesn't mean the devices work with HomeKit just yet, it suggests that they'll be compatible soon.
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The appearance of the devices in this database will be a pleasant surprise for Ring owners who want to control their smart home with Apple's Home app for iOS and Mac. Ring has promised HomeKit integration as far back as 2016, but when Amazon bought the company in 2018 many thought this would kill off any chance of HomeKit support, given it and Siri are a clear rival to Amazon's own Alexa platform.
Twitter user Daniel Feodorov was first to notice the Ring products listed on the Made for iPhone database, tweeting the news on May 13. GearBrain has also searched the database and can confirm, as of May 14, the Ring Video Doorbell Pro and Ring Spotlight Cam are both there, and listed as HomeKit devices.
Other models of Ring doorbell, like the Video Doorbell Elite, are not listed, but this could soon change.
GearBrain has also discovered that the August Doorbell Cam Pro appears in the database and is listed as a HomeKit device. This comes just two months after August said HomeKit integration was a long-term possibility for the Doorbell Cam Pro. The addition of these devices comes after Apple removed all smart video doorbells from its customer-facing HomeKit pages (as opposed to the MFI database lookup page) in July 2018.
That said, appearing as certified on the MFI database does not necessarily mean the August doorbell will imminently receive a software update to give it HomeKit support.
August doorbell camera appears in Apple HomeKit databaseGearBrain
The same is also true of the Ring devices. But once that software update arrives, Apple users will be able to operate their Ring Doorbell Pro without using the Ring app at all (once it has been set up for the first time). Instead, they will be able to view the Ring's camera and speak to visitors through the microphone within the Home app, which is available on iOS and Mac.
They will also be able to use the Home app to create automations, where a press of the Ring's doorbell button has a number of things happen through a HomeKit-compatible smart home.
With Apple's big WWDC event taking place in June, we wouldn't be surprised to see an announcement made by Ring, Amazon or Apple here - and possible August, too. WWDC kicks off with a keynote address led by Apple boss Tim Cook on June 3.
Evermore smart home device makers are turning to HomeKit, buoyed by Apple's string reputation for privacy, security, and the protection of sensitive user data.
Given these devices - many fitted with microphones and cameras - and designed for use in and around the home, manufacturers may well see Apple and HomeKit as their preferred option, even if certification can be a more involved process than gaining compatibility with other platforms like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
How Apple Homekit Works www.youtube.com