The Varietas HomeHub Server and Driver Bundle enable you to integrate your Control4 system into the Apple HomeKit platform. Easily control any of your Control4 devices using Siri or the HomeKit app. This is an easy to use and nearly automatic integration. No programming is required to control the device once the HomeHub and Driver are setup.
Homebridge is an open source software package you can run on your home network that emulates Apple’s HomeKit hardware protocol. It supports Plugins, which are community-contributed modules that provide a basic bridge from HomeKit to various 3rd-party APIs provided by manufacturers of “smart home” devices. The Varietas Home Hub is a pre-packaged, install-ready system that makes setup and operation of homebridge with Control4 simple to install and maintain.
Due to the way HomeKit works, nearly all functionality happens directly on your local network. There are no external services that have to be contacted. There’s no remote push notifications to wait for. Most interactions in HomeKit will happen with almost zero perceptible delay. Thanks to Apple’s design, interacting with your home via HomeKit is as smooth and responsive as if you were using the Control4 system directly.
The system currently supports integration with the following devices installed on a Control4 system:
- Motion Detectors
- Contact Sensors
- Door Locks
- Fan Speed Switches
- Security Systems (via the new Security Panel proxy only, older devices not supported)
- Garage Doors
The driver is not available with out the HomeHub server hardware. Adding this to your cart will add a license for the driver and the HomeHub which will be physically shipped to you and is required to be installed on the job site.
There are a lot of features offered by HomeKit, and with a little creativity, you can do even more with it in Control4. Siri even supports HomeKit commands on the AppleWatch.
A few basic examples are:
- Use Siri to turn light switches on and off
- Use Siri to set dimmers to a particular light level
- Use Siri to open or close your garage doors
- Use HomeKit notifications to alert you when your kids get home from school (the front door opens)
- Use HomeKit notifications to verify your pet sitter showed up on time (alarm panel disabled, then activated)
- Use the Home app to set a fan speed controller to “medium” speed
- Use the Home app to set a security system to Home or Away modes
- Use Siri to unlock the front door
- Use HomeKit “Location” triggers to set scenes when you arrive or leave home.
There are 2 steps to complete the integration. HomeHub & Driver Setup (this tab) HomeKit Setup (next tab)
HTTP Port: Take note of this as you will need it shortly
License Key: Paste in the license key from your BlackWire order
Home Hub IP: Enter in the IP of the HomeHub device.
Shared Secret: If using the enhanced network security create a random password here and save it.
Network Security: Enabling this will enhance the security used by the device. The shared secret above can be any random password. You will need to apply this into the HomeHubs web menu shortly.
Now that the driver is setup we can move forward with setting up the device
- Plug the home hub into your network with an Ethernet cable (not provided)
- Plug the home hub into a power outlet using the provided AC adapter.
- Use Safari, Firefox, or IE (Chrome not yet supported) to go to this URL on the same local network as the device http://homebridge.local
- Enter the user name and password, when prompted
- UN: homebridge
- PW: h0m3br1dg3
Director IP: Enter in the IP of your Control4 device running director
HomeBridge Driver Port: Enter in the HTTP Port displayed in the driver
Shared Secret: If you enabled the Network Security option in the driver you will enter that same password here
Security: If you are using the Shared Secret check this box to enable it
Once finished click Import Config from Control4
You will now see all of your devices loaded from Control4. You may rename devices now or change their type if needed. Additionally if there are devices you do not want to import you can delete them now.
Move to the next step
Click on the button that says Save Homebridge Config and wait for 10 seconds then click Restart Homebridge and wait for 4 minutes before moving forward to the next tab titled HomeKit Setup
Take note of the HomeKit PIN being displayed here
The HomeBridge supports 75 series per bridge instance. Upon import if you have more than 75 devices a second bridge instance will be created. This will ensure you can have all of the device from your Control4 project into HomeKit.
Adding New Devices After The Original Setup
Now that you have the Control4 driver setup and working lets get the HomeKit side of things setup.
You will need to create a HomeKit Home Location. In our example I have created a location named BlackWire inside of the HomeKit app on the iPhone.
Once the Home has bene created click Add Accessory.
There is no barcode to scan from the HomeHub. Click on the button at the bottom that says I Don’t Have a Code or Cannot Scan
You will see any HomeKit enabled devices on this screen. You will want to select the device called HomeBridge.
This will request the HomeKit Pin. This pin is what you will obtain from the homebridge.local web page or on the sticker on the device its self.
NOTE: You may see items like ecobee thermostats, rachio irrigation controllers etc here. You may ignore those.
It is very important you put devices in their respective rooms on HomeKit, just like you would on Control4. This will be the best time to do that.
Room: Clicking on this will bring up the Default room which is going to try and put every single device into 1 room. You will want to create new rooms (instructions next)
Include in Favorites: HomeKit features a favorites landing page which gives you an entire system overview page of the project. Leaving this checked will include this device in that home page. To have the device only show up in its room view uncheck this.
Create a New Room for this devices. In our example Middle is a thermostat and I am going to add it to a new room called Office
Click Create New
Name your room. In this example it is Office.
You can see the device is now in the room called Office
Include In Favorites: Reminder if you leave this checked this device will be in the HomeKit landing page
Once you are done click Next to move onto the next device. In this example this is 1 of 11.
Now we are editing device 2 of 11. This example is a light. As with all of the devices they are going to default into the room called Default Room. Click the room drop down and add this to the previously created room or create a new room for the device.
Apple has some pre-made scenes you can use. This is optional and would be something you would need to experiment with to see if you want to support this with your client.
To skip this press Next at the top.
Continue setting up the rest of your devices by doing all of the previous steps on each device.
This is an example of the HomeKit Home Page. This will show any device that you left the check mark enabled on for Include in favorites. You may also click on the area at the top where it says 3 lights On to get a view of any device that is currently on.
This is an example of a switch light
This is an example of why it is important to make sure you do not use the default room and assign all of the devices to their matching rooms. This will ensure Siri can operate correctly and the customer has a smooth experience with the integration.
IE turn on the kitchen lights will not work correctly unless the appropriate lights are in the room called kitchen.
Initial BlackWire release.