HomeKit your existing FIBARO system without technical skills
FIBARO has released their HomeKit range of products in October 2016. However, the new range of HomeKit enabled products run purely on Bluetooth. This move left an entire customer base that are using FIBARO Home Center Lite and FIBARO Home Center 2 in lurch as the current Home Center range does not offer HomeKit connectivity. Currently they do not have any known plans in the pipeline to make their Home Center HomeKit compatible.
For the technical savvy geeks, there are open source solution based on Node JS, available for quick enablement of HomeKit on their FIBARO system. This require some technical knowledge of linux command lines, managing system services as well as editing of config files. Unlike our previous post on integrating Amazon Echo and Google Home with FIbaro/Vera where geeks can just request for a jar file from us to so do, making your FIBARO HomeKit compatible requires a little more work than that. However, we are not going do a technical coverage of how to make your FIBARO system HomeKit enabled. Geeks can drop us a message and we will point you to the technical guides. In this post, we are glad to announce that we have packaged the HomeKit software into our existing Smart Home Bridge that is already running the software to voice control (with Google Home and Amazon Echo) your FIBARO system. With the Smart Home Bridge, you just need to download our app (currently still being published to the App Store), to quickly enable HomeKit on your FIBARO. Here are some screenshots on the quick setup which takes you less than 5 mins if you are using the Smart Home Bridge:
Once your run the app with the Smart Home Bridge, already connected to the network and powered up, the app connects itself to the bridge automatically and pulls out the default settings. It also generates a HomeKit code for you to use later on.
You just need to key in your FIBARO system IP address (we will do an auto scan in our next release) and also the local FIBARO login credential and click on Save to Smart Home Bridge. The HomeKit software on the bridge will restart and connect to your FIBARO system to pull out all your devices. We will go to this later.
If you ever encounter problem with the setup, you can click on Reset Smart Home Bridge and Save to Smart Home Bridge. This is in case you need to reset the HomeKit software. In the open source version that the techie uses, they will have to SSH into the OS to delete certain files. The app handles that for end users.
Please note that if you are a geek that installed the open source software, this app will not work as we had to customised the software and created services on the OS to allow inputs from the app. However, if you configured the open source version of the software correctly, the following steps will be the same. You just need to launch your Home app on your iOS device (iOS 10 and above):
Select Add Accessory
Select the Smart Home Bridge
The app will complain that it is not certified but it will still work, so click on Add Anyway.
Click on Enter Code Manually
Enter the HomeKit code that was previously shown in the Smart Home Bridge app.
That’s it. Your devices in FIBARO will all be automatically extracted into the Home app and your FIBARO system is now HomeKit enabled! The following screenshots simply shows the different type of devices that can be controlled by the HomeKit app.
With this, you can also ask Siri to turn on/off your lights, lock doors, set AC setpoint etc. What’s more is that if you have an Apple Watch, all these automatically appears on the watch for quick control on your wrist! Just note that by default, HomeKit only works if you are on your own wifi network. For it to to work remotely, you will need to make your Apple TV or spare iPad as a home hub for remote access. Check out this link for details.
You can now ditch your FIBARO app that looks like it came from an iPhone 3GS era. So, geeks, feel free to PM us for instructions (it is too lengthy to share here) and if you want it quick an easy, get the Smart Home Bridge here.
PS : This version of Smart Home Bridge has been updated to allow configuration via a URL instead of an app. Please refer to this article.