HomeKit is a framework in iOS that lets accessories connect seamlessly so people can better manage their homes using the Apple Home app through their iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. It offers a set of common protocols which enable many types of accessories to work together easily and securely, and allows users' control of any device and scenario by simply asking Siri. HomeKit is built on a secure foundation with end-to-end encryption, providing a secure connection between Apple's iPhones or iPads and HomeKit-enabled accessories.
NXP’s SDK with HomeKit support is architected for multiple system configurations, from a very low power wireless single chip microcontroller (MCU) system (like Kinetis KW41Z and KW31Z), to a dual processor system consisting of a host processor (like Kinetis , LPC or i.MX) that runs the HomeKit Accessory Protocol (HAP) and accessory application, and a wireless radio. Many Kinetis MCUs and i.MX applications processors offer a wide array of advanced security features such as cryptographic keys storage, software and system protection options, a hardware random number generator (RNG), and integrated system tamper detection.
“HomeKit is the leading way for consumer adoption of the smart home, with an open platform that allows accessories to work seamlessly together and securely with your iPhone or iPad,” says Emmanuel Sambuis, vice president of microcontrollers and connectivity at NXP Semiconductors. “By adding HomeKit support to NXP’s rich portfolio of MCUs, application processors and crossover processors, accessory makers can enjoy the benefits of everything the platform offers including Siri voice control, iCloud remote access, easy configuration, user APIs with built-in firmware upgrade support to address these consumer requirements, enabling fast and efficient design for a broad spectrum of home automation products.”
Prominent features supported include a debug mode that provides visibility of the user API and select application parameters, and implementation of virtual accessories that can be used as the starting point for product development, even before all the application hardware is available.
The first product based on NXP Kinetis technology with full HomeKit support is the Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt from Allegion (see photo above). Schlage’s solution is HomeKit compatible and leverages the performance and security capabilities of the Kinetis K11 MCU. It is designed to let users control door locks using an iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch. The Schlage Sense solution also helps users manage and store multiple access codes and share electronic access.
NXP’s SDK with HomeKit support is now available at www.nxp.com/homekit. The SDK includes a royalty-free NXP BLE host stack with most of the GATT profiles, all fully compliant with the BLE 4.2 specification, and Wi-Fi networking with multiple NXP MCUs and processors. In addition, NXP professional services are available to help on hardware and software development, plus system integration and customization.