How to Use Siri With Your Smart Home Devices
When I’m in the market for new smart home devices, I always look for the “Works with Apple HomeKit” label on the product packaging. Devices with this label are certified to work with Apple’s Home app in iOS 10, allowing you to organize and control all your HomeKit-enabled accessories from one location on your iOS device.
These products also work with Apple’s Siri, meaning that they’re controllable using only your voice. Unfortunately, it isn’t always easy to figure out the commands that work with each Apple HomeKit-compatible product.
In this article, you’ll learn where to find Siri commands for devices such as smart lights, thermostats, locks, outlets, and cameras. You’ll also find a selection of useful commands for some of the most popular products on the market.
Where to Get Started
First introduced in 2014, the Apple HomeKit protocol allows software developers to make applications that work with home automation products . It also lets manufacturers of existing equipment make gateways that connect to HomeKit as well.
Beyond spotting the “Works with Apple HomeKit” label on the package, it hasn’t always been easy to find a current list of Apple HomeKit-compatible products. That began to change in early 2017 when Apple introduced a HomeKit Accessories page online. On this page, you’ll find current and future Apple HomeKit products organized into various categories, including lights, outlets, cameras, and more.
Find the Link
For most current Apple HomeKit accessories, Apple includes a manufacturing link on the Accessories page. From the product developer’s website, you can often find Siri commands that work with each product. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.
For example, Philips Hue has an entire page dedicated to Siri commands for its products [no longer available]. Conversely, a company like Elgato only makes a passing reference to Siri compatibility on its website.
More From Apple
Besides the HomeKit Accessories page, Apple also provides a page dedicated to Siri commands. Unfortunately, it doesn’t offer commands specific to individual products. Instead, you’ll see a fancy marketing page with generalized commands like “Turn the lights blue,” “Turn off the radio,” and “Set the Tahoe house to 72 degrees.”
Look at the Product App
Each Apple Homekit-compatible product comes with a free app. From these apps, you can sometimes find a section on Siri commands. As you may expect, this isn’t always the case. This omission can be especially frustrating if you’re new to the smart home market.
Once again, Philips Hue is representative of a company that does things right. The official Philips Hue app has a section dedicated to Apple HomeKit and Siri. From here, you can find Siri commands organized by Lights, Rooms, and Scenes.
When in Doubt
As you’ve probably guessed, there’s no simple way to find Siri commands for all Apple HomeKit-compatible products. After looking through the various websites and apps, your best bet to find Siri commands might be to do a Google search. Start with the topic “Siri commands” and then expand your search to include “Siri commands and (the name of your product).” With some luck, you’ll find the tools necessary.
I’d also suggest checking for commands on YouTube. The video-sharing site is a great place to find instructional videos from both product manufacturers and other users.
To get you started, here are some useful Siri commands for some of the most popular Apple HomeKit-compatible products on the market, including lights, thermostats, locks, outlets, and cameras.
Philips Hue remains the leader in the smart lighting marketplace. Siri commands for these devices include:
- “Siri, turn on my [lamp name]” (e.g. “Turn on my Sofa lamp”)
- “Siri, turn off my [lamp name]” (e.g. “Turn off my Reading lamp”)
- “Siri, dim my [lamp name]” (e.g. “Dim my Bedside lamp”)
- “Siri, dim my [lamp name] to [xx]%” (e.g. “Dim my Bedside lamp to 90 percent”)
- “Siri, set my [lamp name] to [color]” (e.g. “Set my Cooking lamp to orange”)
Are you looking for a smart lighting solution that’s a little bit different? You’ll love the Nanoleaf Aurora, which offers color changing and voice control abilities in a modular design. Watch the video below for some examples of what you can do with Aurora:
Among the Siri commands to try are:
- “Siri, what is my thermostat temperature?”
- “Siri, set my thermostat to 20 degrees.”
- “Siri, what is the temperature in [sensor name]?”
- “Siri, set my thermostat to [Heat/Cool/Auto/Off].”
The Honeywell’s Lyric Round is another popular smart thermostat that’s compatible with Apple HomeKit. Siri commands include:
- “Siri, set [name of location] to [XX] degrees.”
- “Siri, what is the indoor temperature?”
- “Siri, set thermostat to ‘Home’ settings.”
Yes, there are even door locks compatible with Apple HomeKit. Among the most popular are the August Smart Lock and Kwikset Premis. The Siri commands for each are very similar, as you can see in the video below:
Products as mundane as wall outlets have received the smart home treatment in recent years. Many of these also come with Apple HomeKit-compatibility and Siri commands.
For example, iHome’s lineup of smart plugs works with commands like:
- “Siri, turn on the bedroom outlet.”
- “Siri, is the light in the dining room on?”
Because iDevices smart home products allow you to set up Homes, Rooms, Zones, and Scenes, you can use extremely simple but personalized Siri commands like:
- “Hey Siri, I’m going to bed.”
- “Hey Siri, play my dinner scene.”
- “Hey Siri, set my thermostat to 68 degrees.”
Finally, there’s the Omna 180 Cam HD from D-Link, which is one of the first Apple HomeKit-compatible security cameras on the market. Like other HomeKit-enabled products, one of its biggest strengths is being able to work with other smart products.
For example, you can easily use Omna’s motion detection feature to control and turn on lights, smart plugs, thermostats, and sound alarms.
With Siri, you can use your voice to bring up your camera in real time automatically. To view the camera’s live feed, just say:
- “Siri, show me the [name of camera].”
An Exciting Time
Siri commands are a useful tool to use with Apple HomeKit-enabled products . Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to figure out which commands work with each product. You can find controls for many of these products through resources offered directly by the product’s website or apps. Other products may require more research through a Google search or a visit to YouTube.
How do you find the best commands to use with Siri and your Apple HomeKit products? Let us know using the comments below.