Home Automation not work with Apple Home

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by hokiepokie07, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. hokiepokie07 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #1
    Just like the title reads, I'm not having success with my geofence "I'm Leaving" automation on my Home app.

    The items I'm using are philips Hue bulbs, ecobee3 (with 2 sensors) and an August lock. I get the message on the automation that it requires confirmation to run, and I read that's because of the August lock. I've never actually been asked to confirm anything.

    So today, I left a couple Hue lights on to see if they would cut off after I got to work. According to the Home app, they were still on and I don't think the "I'm leaving" automation even cut on because it wasn't highlighted.

    The only things I can think of that are causing an issue are the August lock and the ecobee3 sensors. I say the sensors because they still say their is occupancy in my home when no one is here. I'm wondering if that's affecting my geofence in someway or if it's the August lock? I'd really like to keep the August lock on it just to be on the safe side that we always lock our door. My wife and I share the Home app meaning it's on her phone as well as mine with the same iCloud account.

    Any suggestions on how to fix this automation?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Riku7 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    #2
    I'm a Hue user myself, but for the rest of your automation devices, I'm just shooting ideas without personal experience of them. That being said, I probably can't get you an all-inclusive final solution, just some ideas. You didn't say what you've already tried and how experienced you are, it's possible that this message gives you nothing new. But let's rule out:

    The Hue bulbs might require the geofencing option to be activated and allowed from their dedicated Philips app too before an external one can take advantage of the feature. Does it make a difference?

    It would also be interesting to find out why the sensors are interpreting the occupancy incorrectly. Have you followed their behavior, can you compare the situation to circumstances when they had correctly interpreted the home to be unoccupied? For proof that they are actually working correctly and detecting the two different states in the first place. If the sensors themselves are working correctly, are there any settings that could prevent the change of state from happening?
    If there's something for the sensitivity of the sensors, if they can see a window or other sight that's "alive", technically they might interpret weather or traffic induced fast changes in lighting as the movement of a person. Also, you don't have pets roaming about the house, do you?
    There might be a setting for the duration after which the device determines that there's no one home. If such a thing exist, is the duration set to short enough?

    Ensure from both of your phones – if they are the source of proof that the system uses to determine your proximity from home – that the location services are turned on, and your locations are always automatically accessible for the applications or connections that need the information to know who's home. Many applications cut connections to save energy if you're not actively using your phone. I think the term to prevent that from happening is to allow background app refresh.
     
  3. gsmornot macrumors 68030

    gsmornot

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #3
    Do your Ecobee sensors ever reflect the correct occupancy? When you leave it will take quite a while before the sensor changes to unoccupied, its about a half hour to an hour on average.
     
  4. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #4
    It takes the occupancy one a LONG time to reflect the correct occupancy. The motion ones are more accurate in that they will say there is no motion detected, but the occupancy one will still say there is occupancy in my house.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 14, 2017 ---
    I feel dumb, but I can't figure out how to set up geofencing on the new Philips Hue app. How do I do that?

    As far as the sensors, the sensors correctly identify "motion", but the "occupancy" one, which is the actual Ecobee3 thermostat, will say there is occupancy in my house even after my sensors say there is no motion detected. It eventually will turn to no occupancy, but it takes a LONG time. I'm not sure the exact time though.

    No, I don't have any pets in my house.
     
  5. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #5
    In the Hue app, tap on "Routines" at the bottom and then "Home & Away". You can use the Hue's native geofencing but you shouldn't need to. They should work using the home app's geofencing options.

    The ecobee's sensors won't affect geofence settings. Not in my experience anyway. The long time it takes to show no occupancy is their built-in time required for them to ensure the house is empty and tell the thermostat to go into smart-away.

    Is your wife home when you're trying to see if the automation activates? Or gone with you?
     
  6. Riku7 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    #6
    Occupancy is tricky to define in terms of artificial intelligence because there has to be a threshold. If someone has a window with a view to a garden with a swaying tree that causes speckled shadows to be cast in the room, in some cases that can be a lot of movement in the visible area. The sensor would have to contain some highly advanced technology in it if it had the capability to recognize objects, such as, telling humans and pets from the shadows and movement caused by natural phenomena or cars et cetera. If the sensor isn't too sensitive, then it would cross the threshold that would allow a burglar to walk in the house unnoticed if he moved slowly enough.

    Have you read other users’ experiences of the Ecobee sensor in question? Have they found it difficult or easy to implement to their surroundings, and found it to serve the purpose? Philips quite recently released Hue-compatible motion sensors, but since I don’t have any, I don’t know if they have features for detecting long-term occupancy or not. I recommend finding out whether it’s the Ecobee sensor that doesn’t work or is an incompetent device for the job, or, there could be something, anything, setting a false alarm in your house. In which case, it’s not a false alarm but the device working just as it should. It just can’t recognize objects because a basic motion sensor only detects changes in luminosity.

    Not a direct fix but a candidate for a workaround if all else fails: IFTTT “if this, then that” is a system that supports a lot of services and allows you to create ‘recipes’ so that if something is detected, it triggers things defined by you. Ecobee seems to be a supported service, and Hue definitely is. If you don’t want to make your own, going to the Ecobee dedicated page of IFTTT, there are some ready recipes that you can use.
    https://ifttt.com/ecobee

    For example, this could help you to troubleshoot what might be triggering or not triggering sensor state changes: https://ifttt.com/applets/268188p-receive-a-notification-if-any-motion-is-detected (IFTTT app)
    https://ifttt.com/applets/229669p-ecobee-transitions-to-smart-home-or-away-get-a-notification (Android)

    Or location recognition by different means:
    https://ifttt.com/applets/230248p-switch-your-ecobee-to-the-home-comfort-profile-as-you-arrive-home
    https://ifttt.com/applets/230250p-i...away-comfort-profile-when-you-leave-your-home
     
  7. KingBowser64 macrumors member

    KingBowser64

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    Location:
    Bloomington, IN
    #7
    I believe that I know what issue that you are referring to with the August lock. If you open the Apple Home app and 3D press on the August lock, it will tell you that for you and every other person 'in your Home (app)' to "verify" before the August lock can be used with HomeKit. I had to stand close to the lock with each iPhone, then I 3D touched the August lock from within the Home app, and then at the bottom of that screen I clicked "Open the August app." After a few seconds, each device got verified once I went back to the Home app. Now all 6 of us can use Siri and the Home app to Lock/Unlock our front door. I have automations setup through the Apple Home app and not through the Philips Hue app.

    With automations made through the Apple Home app: If you download the Elgato Eve app, go to 'Scenes' at the bottom, and then 'Rules.' It will tell you the last time that each automation was executed.

    I have automations setup in the Apple Home app for: "Arriving Home," "Leaving Home," "Sunrise," and "Sunset."
    -"Arriving Home": 'Inside Garage' Philips Hue lights turn on, "Front Porch" unlocks
    -"Leaving Home": 'Inside Garage' Philips Hue lights turn off, "Front Porch" locks
    '"Sunset": 'Outside' lights turn on
    "Sunrise": 'Outside' lights turn off

    An issue that I have run into is: I can only get location-based automations to execute from my iPhone (I 'made the Home'). I contacted Apple support and they said that every device needs to create an automation if they want that automation too, which I believe is stupid. I want to make one automation and select the users that it would apply to, not have the same automation made 6 times. I had my brother make an identical location-based automation from his iPhone, yet according to Elgato Eve, his automations never execute, while mine do. Apple says they submitted an enhancement request for my 'feature' when I bug reported it. I hope this arrives before iOS 11 because location-based automations work for 1 of the 6 devices in my Home, which currently defeats the purpose of location-based automations.


    Also, from within the Home app, click the 'location icon' in the top left corner. Then click 'Home Settings' and select the correct home. Click each user and make sure that everyone has 'Allow Remote Access' on at least, but I also have every user with 'Allow Editing.' You have to enable each user while you are at home.
     
  8. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #8
    Thank you for all the advice! I'm not at home now, but when I 3D touch the August lock in the Home app, all I get is the lock/unlock option (currently locked) and details. There is no option to verify it or anything. The August lock works fine by its self in the Home app or on the August app. I can unlock and lock it just fine. I get notifications if someone uses the lock as well.

    For some reason when I tried to add my wife last night to my "home", it said her iCloud was not valid or something. We share an iCloud account and she has her own as well.
     
  9. gsmornot macrumors 68030

    gsmornot

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #9
    When I look to add someone to Home, it looks at the Family Sharing list. Not just anyone with iCloud. Do you use Family sharing at all with her? May not be needed but sharing what I see when I select to add someone.
     
  10. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #10
    I do. I think we are already sharing because her Home is identical to mine. The accessories and automations.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 14, 2017 ---
    So I wonder what the problem is and why it won't automatically go to the "I'm leaving" scene when I leave my geofence area? It should cut my Hue lights off and lock my door (using August). Yesterday, I kept some lights on to test it and it never cut them off. I had to manually click the "I'm Leaving" scene which defeats the purpose.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 14, 2017 ---
    I downloaded the Elegato Eve app and checked the Automation "I'm Leaving" and it says Last: Never. I'm at a loss for why it won't activate with I leave my geofence area.
     
  11. gsmornot macrumors 68030

    gsmornot

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #11
    Don't know but I will say that when automations fail for me, its the ones related to the Philips Hue bulbs that fail. I have yet to have a failure with the Lutron switches. My failures have not been routine and its random bulbs that will fail to change state at the times configured but I assume it will be handled in the future.
     
  12. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #12
    Have you checked your phone to see if you get any pop-ups/notifications as you're leaving the geofence perimeter? I tried creating a similar automation to activate the "I'm leaving" scene (haven't tested yet as I'm still at home, should be able to test in about an hour) and when I include my August locks in the scene, the automation notes that "This automation requires confirmation to run because it may allow entry into your home". When I remove the locks from the scene, the automation does not have that warning.
     
  13. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #13
    I have that message as well, but I've never received a notification about my August lock. Although, when I leave my house it's always locked, so it may be different if my home was unlocked. I created a new automation with "I'm Home" that activates three lights. So I'll see if that works or not.
     
  14. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #14
    Just tried mine. I created an "I'm leaving" scene that includes turning off some Hue bulbs, some Lutron dimmers, and a couple of August locks. I created the automation to use that scene when I leave. When I left, the doors were locked but the lights were still on. As I left the zone, I got a notification asking if I wanted to activate the scene. Tapped yes and it seems to have worked fine. Lights were off, doors stayed locked.

    It may be a redundant question, but you've got it set that the home app can use your location services?
     
  15. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #15
    The "I'm home" scene worked fine tonight. I had it set for two Hue bulbs to cut on when I got home and they both cut on.

    I'm stumped as to what could be wrong. Yep, my home app is set to use my location services. It's strange because I've never received a notification like others have said they get with the August lock.
     
  16. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #16
    Yeah, with the arrival automation working, your location services shouldn't be the problem. Maybe give it a shot but without the August lock included in the "I'm leaving" scene? Could at least see if that's what's causing some issues.

    -edit-
    As for the notification when I left earlier, it didn't specifically mention the August locks. It just said something along the lines of "do you want to activate this scene" (the "I'm leaving" scene).
     
  17. KingBowser64 macrumors member

    KingBowser64

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    Location:
    Bloomington, IN
    #17
    Hmm. That's odd. So you do not see anywhere in the Home app that your August lock needs to be verified before it can be controlled from Home? Do you have it linked to an August Doorbell or August Connect? I have my August Lock linked to a corresponding August Doorbell.

    Try this: Turn your Wifi and Bluetooth off. Are you able to lock/unlock and/or check the status of the lock with the Home app and/or Siri? By doing so, you are able to 'remotely test' this device. With iOS 9, I was never able to control my August Lock via Siri nor any HomeKit-enabled apps (Apple did not have their Home app yet).

    Does your Apple TV show up as a device when you click on the arrow in the top left corner? You need an Apple TV to be in 'connected' status in order to remotely control devices and a 4th gen Apple TV is required for automations.

    I am not positive about the iCloud thing. In my house, we all have our own separate Apple ID (which for each user is used for: iTunes, App Store, iMessage, FaceTime, and iCloud). Then I invited each person through their personal Apple ID. I have had 0 issues with this with iOS 10 (but INSANE issues with iOS 9. Some users never had notifications to 'accept' the new home.)

    Try deleting all of the Homes from her phone. Sometimes if there is more than one Home (without any devices in it), it can cause issues. My Mom had accidentally made her own Home with no devices in it, but once I removed it, everything worked properly.


    Hopefully all of this is helpful. I am an avid HomeKit user. I have quite the HomeKit selection:
    August Doorbell, August Lock, Elgato Eve Room Sensor, Philips Hue lights, Nanoleaf Aurora lights, First Alert OneLink Fire/CO alarms (hardwired), Honeywell Lyric thermostat, Fibaro Water Sensor, Fibaro Motion Sensor, Fibaro Door/Window Sensors, and an iDevices Smart Plug. I also just ordered two D-Link Omna cameras that just went live on Apple.com for $199.99 and they just shipped and should be delivering on February 16, 2017.
    I have experienced many issues with HomeKit, which were mostly due to iOS 9. I love what it is and know that it has even greater potential. I hope that many more companies jump on board with HomeKit. I would love for all kinds of devices to be HomeKit compatible. How cool would it be to have a vacuum that was HomeKit-compatible so that whenever it was used, it would know for how long, the rooms it was in, and how much energy it used. I am passionate about the Internet of Things and really hope that HomeKit takes off. I verbally sell it to my friends and family and they are blown away with what I can do.

    I am excited for Apple to expand HomeKit Automations by adding granularity to it. I want an automation that says:
    -While no one is at Home,
    --If motion is sensed inside the Home
    ---Turn lights on
    ---Record video with Omna
    ---Alert me via push notification
     
  18. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #18
    I took off the August lock from my "I'm Leaving" scene and it worked exactly like it should. All my lights cut off as I left my home.

    I've used the August lock remotely and I have two AppleTV's in my house that are listed as "Connected" in the Home app. I'm at a loss as to why the August lock won't pop up a notification asking me to run the "I'm leaving" scene or why the scene won't work at all with the August lock.
     
  19. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #19
    Got it working with the August lock! I simply deleted the lock from the app and from Apple HomeKit and then added it back. It now works. Now I'm trying to share the Home with my wife but I keep getting an error that her iCloud account isn't activated. Trying to solve this one now, haha!
     
  20. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #20
    Great that it's working now. Unfortunately, the next issue could be a pain, but hopefully not. Quick checklist, have you made sure any previous "homes" have been removed from her HomeKit settings? Does she have two-factor authentication? Tried deleting/resetting her iCloud Keychain?
     
  21. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 20, 2009
    #21
    So ours is a little complicated. We share my iCloud account so we are sharing pictures. I'm not a fan of the clicking a picture to share it. I like how we can take pictures and once we are connected to wifi our pictures sync.

    So, it had automatically synced the Home app settings, but today, when I left, everything worked as it should, but she was still at home. I was hoping both our phones would use the Geolocations so if she is home the "I'm leaving" wouldn't start. Apparently it is tied to only my phone?

    So, I had her uncheck the Home box under Settings > iCloud on her phone (actually my iCloud address). My hope was I could just invite her with her own iCloud account (I set this up on her phone to store all her settings, etc.), but it gave me the error that her iCloud wasn't activated. I don't think she has the two-factor authentication set up yet, but I'll do that for her later.

    Is it possible under our situation for me to eventually invite her even though her "main" iCloud address is mine on her phone and her "secondary" one is her own?
     
  22. gsmornot macrumors 68030

    gsmornot

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    Sep 29, 2014
    #22
    You should each have your own iCloud account. Ideally.
     
  23. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 20, 2009
    #23
    In a way we do. I just want all our photos to automatically sync to all our devices. That's why we both share my iCloud account, but she also has her own which is under the Mail settings so she can backup her iPhone.
     
  24. chuyn, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017

    chuyn macrumors 6502

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    Nov 13, 2015
    #24
    Does that actually work? Like her phone backups are completely separate from your iCloud account? ie. your iCloud settings do not show "your iPhone" and "wife's iPhone" under your iCloud storage?

    I was under the impression you could only have one iCloud account logged in at a time (for contact syncing and backups). But you can have a different account signed in for the iTunes/App Store.

    -edit-
    This is how I thought having a second iCloud account added worked. Unless something has changed recently?
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5049664?tstart=0

    Anyway, an issue with location automations is they don't really take into account more than one user. You can't set it to turn off the lights only if both people leave. I hope this gets addressed soon
     
  25. hokiepokie07 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 20, 2009
    #25
    It does for us. It drove me crazy trying to figure out how to do it.

    What I have is my iCloud account as our "main one", which syncs our photos, iCloud Drive, and Lost my iPhone. She then has her own iCloud account that we created and I have it stored under "Mail". This backs up her iPhone and syncs her contacts, calendar, and notes on all her devices.

    Under Manage Storage, it has her iPhone as a backup as well.

    With the location automation, it seems like what you are saying is no matter if we share our Home app or if I figure out how to add her onto it instead of sharing, once one of us leaves, it'll put the automation into motion?
     

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