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NFC for iPhone in iOS 11 - Demo Video


InsteonNut

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Hi folks,

 

It's been an exciting week here as Apple's world wide developer conference wraps up. A huge announcement for the HA community was that iOS 11 on iPhone 7/7+ this fall would support NFC tags. I was able to get a proof of concept working on the early iOS 11 beta preview to demo scanning a NFC tag and having an ISY controlled light in the room respond. Check it out here: https://youtu.be/TOvkG6k_Kak

 

Let us know in the comments below what your plans are for NFC when support is released with iOS 11.

 

Wes

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Hi folks,

 

It's been an exciting week here as Apple's world wide developer conference wraps up. A huge announcement for the HA community was that iOS 11 on iPhone 7/7+ this fall would support NFC tags. I was able to get a proof of concept working on the early iOS 11 beta preview to demo scanning a NFC tag and having an ISY controlled light in the room respond. Check it out here: https://youtu.be/TOvkG6k_Kak

 

Let us know in the comments below what your plans are for NFC when support is released with iOS 11.

 

Wes

It looks like this works better than iBeacons. Whats your thoughts?

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NFC does respond right away, but I think it's a different use-case. iBeacons will trigger MobiLinc in the background, no app interaction on your part. Timing on iBeacons is fairly quick, but not always immediate and makes sense for room awareness or items "around you" when you use the Today View/Near Me view.

 

With NFC you have to be in the app and explicitly tell the app to scan for NFC tags which pops up a scanner view waiting for a NFC tag to take some sort of action. NFC feels more like a direct intention to do some action rather then just general location awareness with iBeacons.

 

Wes

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NFC does respond right away, but I think it's a different use-case. iBeacons will trigger MobiLinc in the background, no app interaction on your part. Timing on iBeacons is fairly quick, but not always immediate and makes sense for room awareness or items "around you" when you use the Today View/Near Me view.

 

With NFC you have to be in the app and explicitly tell the app to scan for NFC tags which pops up a scanner view waiting for a NFC tag to take some sort of action. NFC feels more like a direct intention to do some action rather then just general location awareness with iBeacons.

 

Wes

Thanks for the excellent explanation.

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And NFC range is very very short.

 

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk

Like my attention span...what are we talking about? Bunnies!

 

Seriously though that could actually be a pro. If you sit down at your PC and it auto connects and logs you in automatically.

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More interested in the relaxed MFI requirements for HomeKit integrations....any thoughts on exploring that further?

How do you see HomeKit integration with MobiLinc? Mobilinc is for the control of Insteon (etc) via the ISY. Do you have a real use example how it would work?

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Direct Siri integration to your ISY network? He has the Alexa integration and the Google Home integrated - round it out with HomeKit? Plus it would allow a little more flexibility in controlling things from the baked in HomeKit features that MobiLinc doesn't get access to.

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Direct Siri integration to your ISY network? He has the Alexa integration and the Google Home integrated - round it out with HomeKit? Plus it would allow a little more flexibility in controlling things from the baked in HomeKit features that MobiLinc doesn't get access to.

IIRC Siri integration is not based on HomeKit. There is a separate API via SiriKit.

 

Edit: Forgot to include this link.

 

https://developer.apple.com/sirikit/

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Hi Folks,

 

Some background on HomeKit and Siri:

 

The short answer is there's nothing we can to to integrate with Siri and control of the ISY today through Siri even with all of the announcements this week.

 

Here's the longer answer:

HomeKit is a hardware protocol. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices talk to HomeKit hub like the AppleTV over the network or Bluetooth using a secure/encrypted channel over the HomeKit protocol. If the ISY were to integrate with HomeKit the ISY at a minimum would need to add a hardware chip to support this encryption communication. The announcement this week does open the door to a software only encryption process instead of a hardware chip later this year. In theory vendors can firmware update their products to support this, however, the encryption is quite serious and will require decent hardware/software to drive it in a real-time way. There may be limits here to what the current ISY hardware/OS/firmware/memory can do to support the timing that HomeKit requires. Only Michel and company can comment on this. There are a number of other limits to HomeKit integration like your product/service still needs to be a member of the MFi program and go through certification (which is hugely expensive and time consuming) in order to sell it commercially. Also, software only HomeKit implementation can NOT bridge any other Wi-Fi/network device to HomeKit. That is expressly forbidden.

 

SiriKit is limited to about 8 domains for developers like ride sharing or payments. If your app is Uber, then great, you can integrate with SiriKit. Everyone else is left out including the home automation crowd. Siri has native support for HomeKit, but there appears to be zero appetite from Apple to open the home automation domain to other home automation platforms like what Alexa and Google have offered with their voice assistants which we (MobiLinc) support.

 

Hopefully this information is helpful to explain how the different "kits" and capability fit together. 

Wes

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Hi Wes,

 

Thanks so very much for the information and feedback. We are working on our next revision hardware (still designing) so hardware is the least of the issues at the moment. The main issue is that we are still having a hard time figuring out where ISY sits in the Apple ecosystem. As always, Apple is promoting an Apple Centric ecosystem wherein Apple products are the brain/kings/masters of everything. And, this is quite evident from their latest documentation/specification. So, UDI will have to make a huge investigation to figure out whether or not all the development is worth the effort. And, as I mentioned before, that's precisely what we are doing.

 

With kind regards,

Michel

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Hi Michel,

 

I really am hoping that HomeKit integration is something you will support going forward. In my opinion, HomeKit is one of the most convenient home automation systems out there and it is getting better every year. I think it would be a mistake to ignore it while designing a new hardware revision of the ISY.

 

Just my 2 cents. ;)

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