Since you guys are collaborating with the Raspberry folks, have experience with KickStart and are an awesome hardware/software company, it would be too cool if you could al get together and build an Apple approved HomeKit bridge using the Raspberry Pi that works with Photons.
I have been able to make a HomeKit bridge using the Raspberry Pi with Photons for the accessories, I am just concerned that soon, Apple will not allow unlicensed bridges and all my efforts will go to waste. I think you could sell bunch of these to individuals and/or manufactures of accessories.
The coolest thing is the ability to control photons via my Apple Watch using Siri. Since end users can program the Photons, they have full control of the accessory and you can do some great stuff.
Another neat thing is the ability to create a virtual accessories. An example would be to create a virtual accessory named Raining with an on/off parameter. When the photon is queried by HomeKit, it could go to weather.com and see if it is or will soon be raining. You can then add that accessory into your Apple Home Automation app and do something like. When raining is turned on, turn on porch light and turn on another virtual accessory Notify Me which would publish event to IFTTT and you would receive a notification. An event publish by IFTTT or another Photon can be associated with a virtual accessory (SENSOR) that can trigger other events in your home. One Photon can host 15 actual / virtual accessories due to the limitation of functions, but with some good Pub/Sub code one Photon could host hundreds of virtual accessories that can be incorporated into Apple’s Home application and all controlled via Siri. All of my photon controlled devices (real/virtual) work seamlessly with my store bought accessories. (Eve, Harmony Hub, etc).
I am not that smart, but below are a few things I have done so far using my homemade HomeKit, Photons, Apple Home application, IFTTT and Apple watch.
- Open my gate automatically when I approach my home.
- Switch the HDMI input on my TV to my security camera when motion is detected and publish an event to IFTTT that tells me so.
- Bought a 6 outlet HTML power strip from China, added a photon in the mix and for 40 bucks, I now am able to control outlets via Siri. Much cheaper than the $50 per plug you purchase at Walmart.
- Flash lights when someone rings my doorbell during my daily PowerNap instead of actually ringing.
- Say good night to ‘Siri’ which shuts my gate and turns off the lights.
I just ordered a Raspberr Pi 3 with Bluetooth and am writing a virtual accessory that looks for my Tiles. I can’t control them, but I can recognize their presence them which makes them a perfect On/Off Sensor. I will be able to tell my Home Application to do something the Tile is detectable or not. You can already do this with your iPhone, but my dog nor my children have a phone.
Anyway, I will happily be your first contributor because I know it can be done and has unlimited possibilities.
Once you have a licensed bridge, manufactures could make all kind of accessories using the photon.