By Michael Rougeau

Apple could give smart home controls to iOS devices

Apple’s invasion of our homes might not stop at iPads and Apple TVs, according to a new report.

The company is reportedly prepping a new “software platform” that will let iOS devices control every aspect of smart homes, including lighting, temperature, security, and more.

This rumor comes from a report found on The Financial Times, which claimed to have spoken with sources who knew what they were talking about.

The site expects Apple to unveil the new iOS-compatible smart home platform at the company’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC 2014) in San Francisco on June 2.

Get smart

The software platform will reportedly be similar to Apple’s Made For iPhone (MFI) program, in that it will be built into iOS devices but open to development by third parties.

Like how any hardware maker can create an official MFI controller – as long as it’s up to Apple’s standards – so too will any smart device maker be able to craft appliances and other systems that can interact with iOS devices.

And the controls may not be limited to manually flicking the lights or adjusting the air conditioning. Location-activated features could also, for example, automatically light up a room when a person enters with an iPhone that’s paired with the system.

Apple could be trying to get ahead of Google on this one. The search company bought smart thermostat company Nest this year, and a recent proposal from Google suggested the company could hypothetically plaster ads all over your smart home.

Smart homes have yet to catch on in a really big way, but Apple’s involvement may push your average consumer into adopting smart thermostats, light fixtures, appliances, and more.

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