iOS 9 may include a dedicated smart home app
Apple is said to be planning the release of an app designed to manage smart home products, with a view to shipping it in June. Versions of iOS9 that include an app called Home - which allows users to set up new smart home products, group them into different rooms, connect them to an Apple TV, and find new products to buy - are currently being tested by Apple employees, according to 9to5Mac.
This could mean that the app is mostly for setups, not really to control your smart home - which is the preserve of Apple’s HomeKit.
There could be a possibility that this app is just for testing and won’t see the light of the market, but according to 9to5Mac it has a few screens that allow people to find new smart home apps and products. Apple is not responding to requests for comment, so we'll have to wait and see how that pans out.
HomeKit is intended to be the basis of smart home products which allows multiple devices within the same home to connect to each other through iOS. The devices can then be controlled via Siri and third party apps, such as apps from specific smart home products released by that specific company. So far the only app that can control HomeKit is only Siri but people still need some way to set up those smart home products and a dedicated Home app seems like the smart way to do it. If the app is for real, we will hear about it on the 8th of June at the Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).