I've been as critical of HomeKit as anyone, but let me pause to say I think Apple's long-term focus on being extremely strict with its security requirements could be a long term win for the company.
This piece on HomeKit's high-requirements for Bluetooth is interesting. The article quotes an unnamed exec building a smart home product and says Apple is basically taking a stand to make what it sees as less-than-secure Bluetooth devices more secure for the purposes of HomeKit.
"At one point, they decided that computers were no longer going to have CDs – Apple recognized everything is going to be distributed on the Internet. They force an issue. It’s like that here. Regular Bluetooth has an issue — it’s not secure.”
In the short term, there's no arguing Homekit has been a mess. In fact, as I've said before I think Apple has probably hurt more than helped things in 2015. But don't let that conclusion be mistaken for saying that HomeKit is a failure. I think long term, this focus on security could be HomeKit's most redeeming feature. Sure, Apple has made life very difficult for smart home hardware makers, but as security becomes a bigger issues in IoT and smart home -and this week's story of hackers taking over a car is exactly the type of story that petrifies consumers and executives alike - I think locking things down and making them ultra secure will be important.
In other words, security can't be an afterthought in the smart home. Apple is making sure - probably at the expense of itself and others in the space early on - that it isn't. That could pay dividends in 2016 and beyond.
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