Apple explains how the redesigned Home app came to be

Posted:
in iOS
Apple released iOS 16 earlier this fall, and with it, launched an improved version of the Home app with the goal of making it work for everyone.

Apples new Home app
Apple's new Home app


The new Home app -- once prone to being unruly if a user's home had more than a handful of smart devices -- has been redesigned with a focus on simplicity.

Cecelia Dantas, who has worked in Product Marketing at Apple for nearly a decade, pulls back the curtain on the overhauled Home app in an interview with Parade, spotted by 9to5Mac.

"We took the opportunity to rethink and redesign the Home app," Dantas says. "It has this fresh new look and it scales beautifully, even for those who are just starting out their smart home with a few accessories or for those who have an advanced setup."

The new Home tab is highly customizable, allowing users to create the ideal "mission control" for their smart home. Every device, control, sensor, and room shows up in the Home tab. It is broken down into different sections, starting with Favorites, Cameras, and Scenes, followed by a section for each room.

If that feels too cluttered, users can hide devices they don't need to see regularly.

Dantas also takes a moment to speak on Matter, explaining how it would work with existing Apple privacy features.

"[Apple] continues to apply the same lens for privacy that we do across all of our products and services. So all the data is stored using end-to-end encryption," she explains. "So there's no way for Apple to read this data. And Apple doesn't build a profile around what accessories you use, or how you use them."

Matter is a new smart home standard that will work with nearly all smart home ecosystems with a single certification rather than requiring manufacturers to get individual certifications for Google, Amazon, and Apple.

While great in theory, Matter is still in the early stages and won't mean a lot for Homekit users out of the gate.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 9
    Hoping that Lights button at the top will enable me to turn everything off for Halloween. We’re going out and don’t want yard and porch lights on to disappoint trick or treaters. Normally, all come on at sunset. 
    dewmewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 9
    rraburrabu Posts: 264member
    Hoping that Lights button at the top will enable me to turn everything off for Halloween. We’re going out and don’t want yard and porch lights on to disappoint trick or treaters. Normally, all come on at sunset. 
    It’s just a filter on the view. You hit lights button and all other smart devices are hidden. You still need to scroll and turn off each light. Probably easier to say “hey siri turn off all lights”
    StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 9
    It's very nice that they redesigned the home app, and it really is much better. Now, if only it would work... Automations have gone bust with iOS 16, it really is a big mess, as you can see in many threads in the community. It really shows that this has never been tested properly as it is not a little "once in a while" bug but essentially makes austomations unusable, 
    cg27watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 9
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,282member
    The Home app is certainly attractive with all of the background pictures. Functionally it’s still very far behind Alexa app, which incidentally has a prominent control to turn ON/OFF all lights - which I used last night. It also lets you classify smart plugs that are controlling lights as “lights,” which I find rather useful since the smart plug is just an intermediary or proxy. 

    Apple will get there eventually. I think they are trying to make it very simple and accessible for those who are new to home automation. Perhaps when they start getting more people comfortable with it they’ll add in the kind of features people who have been using home automation devices are expecting. It’s still very early in the adoption phase for this technology for a lot of Apple users.
    cg27StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 9
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 1,941member
    dewme said:
    The Home app is certainly attractive with all of the background pictures. Functionally it’s still very far behind Alexa app, which incidentally has a prominent control to turn ON/OFF all lights - which I used last night. It also lets you classify smart plugs that are controlling lights as “lights,” which I find rather useful since the smart plug is just an intermediary or proxy. 

    Apple will get there eventually. I think they are trying to make it very simple and accessible for those who are new to home automation. Perhaps when they start getting more people comfortable with it they’ll add in the kind of features people who have been using home automation devices are expecting. It’s still very early in the adoption phase for this technology for a lot of Apple users.
    Change a smart plug’s icon to a light in the Home app, and it will be interpreted as a light. 
    dewmecg27appleinsideruserlolliverJapheywatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 9
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,268member
    I generally love the new design, however they really need to fix how the buttons for lights work. Previously, if you tapped on a light's button, that light would toggle on/off. If it was a dimming light, it would turn on at the last used level. With the latest update, if you tap on a light, it brings up the sub page with the light switch. So, now it takes at least two taps to turn on or off a light. If it's a dimming light, you have to know the preferred dimming level for that light. Definitely a step backwards as far as usability.
    AppleZulucg27appleinsideruserAlex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 9
    mike1 said:
    I generally love the new design, however they really need to fix how the buttons for lights work. Previously, if you tapped on a light's button, that light would toggle on/off. If it was a dimming light, it would turn on at the last used level. With the latest update, if you tap on a light, it brings up the sub page with the light switch. So, now it takes at least two taps to turn on or off a light. If it's a dimming light, you have to know the preferred dimming level for that light. Definitely a step backwards as far as usability.
    On the button for the light, if you tap on the icon in the left of the button it will turn the light on/off. You don't need to go into the sperate sub menu for this. That Sub Menu only opens when you tap on the text component of the button.
    Alex_Vmike1StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 9
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,268member
    lolliver said:
    mike1 said:
    I generally love the new design, however they really need to fix how the buttons for lights work. Previously, if you tapped on a light's button, that light would toggle on/off. If it was a dimming light, it would turn on at the last used level. With the latest update, if you tap on a light, it brings up the sub page with the light switch. So, now it takes at least two taps to turn on or off a light. If it's a dimming light, you have to know the preferred dimming level for that light. Definitely a step backwards as far as usability.
    On the button for the light, if you tap on the icon in the left of the button it will turn the light on/off. You don't need to go into the sperate sub menu for this. That Sub Menu only opens when you tap on the text component of the button.

    OMG. Thank you! So simple, yet so invisible. LOL.
    As a righty, my thumb naturally would go towards the right side of the button, hence the sub-menu.
    watto_cobralolliver
  • Reply 9 of 9
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,791member
    jpolster said:
    It's very nice that they redesigned the home app, and it really is much better. Now, if only it would work... Automations have gone bust with iOS 16, it really is a big mess, as you can see in many threads in the community. It really shows that this has never been tested properly as it is not a little "once in a while" bug but essentially makes austomations unusable, 
    Not sure what I’m doing wrong, my Automations still work.

    AppleZulu said:
    dewme said:
    The Home app is certainly attractive with all of the background pictures. Functionally it’s still very far behind Alexa app, which incidentally has a prominent control to turn ON/OFF all lights - which I used last night. It also lets you classify smart plugs that are controlling lights as “lights,” which I find rather useful since the smart plug is just an intermediary or proxy. 

    Apple will get there eventually. I think they are trying to make it very simple and accessible for those who are new to home automation. Perhaps when they start getting more people comfortable with it they’ll add in the kind of features people who have been using home automation devices are expecting. It’s still very early in the adoption phase for this technology for a lot of Apple users.
    Change a smart plug’s icon to a light in the Home app, and it will be interpreted as a light. 
    Ah, did not know that. It’s here:



    edited November 2022 mike1watto_cobralolliver
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