One of the best ways to start building a smart home – the Ecobee3 Thermostat – is getting even better. As first noted by 9to5Mac, the Ecobee3 Thermostat remote sensors can now be used as HomeKit-enabled temperature and motion sensors.
Building a HomeKit system
The remote sensors and thermostat will appear in the Home app in iOS 10.
Using the Home app in iOS 10, you’ll see that each remote sensor will appear twice – once as a temperature sensor and other time as a motion detector.
As for the thermostat itself, it will appear three times – a motion sensor, occupancy sensor for the home, and heating and air conditioner controller.
The added HomeKit support can open up a number of different possibilities. For example, if motion is detected in a certain room, users can program a trigger to turn on the lights.
The new features are only available to users with version 126.96.36.1999 of the Ecobee3 Thermostat firmware installed. It’s currently rolling out to everyone, but unfortunately there’s no way to manually update the thermostat. But you should be able to contact customer service and request the new firmware to your device if you can’t wait.
The thermostat can be accessed on the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch.
You can purchase the Ecobee3 Smart Thermostat, which includes one remote sensor, for $249.99.
An additional two-pack of remote sensors are available for $58.81. Up to 32 sensors can be used with one thermostat.
Just to note, the less expensive Ecobee3 Lite Thermostat doesn’t work with remote sensors but is still compatible with HomeKit.
Even though the HomeKit ecosystem has extensively grown since the thermostat landed back in 2015, it’s still one of my favorite ways to start building a smart home. And with the additional features being added to the remote sensors, the thermostat is even a better value for Apple device users.