Just when you think you can start to relax for the holiday season, news of new products inevitably emerge. In this case, a few new products seem to be in the ‘coming soon’ category at present, although still of some interest. Taiwan-based company Waciao, who have only started up this year, have a series of products listed on their website, all of which are listed as HomeKit compatible. The first of these are the Video Doorbell, the IP Camera, and the Roller Blind Motor, all of which are listed with the ‘HomeKit enable’ (sic) prefix.
None of these devices seems to be actually available yet, despite you being able to add both products to the website’s shopping cart (you can’t even access the cart once you’ve added them…), so whether these end up actually being either HomeKit enabled or even available to buy remains to be seen, but it’s promising that they’re listed as compatible with HomeKit nonetheless. As far as additional information goes with the video doorbell, there is none other than basic ‘blurb’, although the newly added IP camera, which has since surfaced at CES 2020, has a fair bit of information;
- HomeKit compatible
- Motion detection
- SD card slot (max. 128gb storage)
- Cloud recording (optional)
- Night vision
- two-way audio
- 120º angle lens
- Wifi 2.4GHz
The Roller Blind motor, on the other hand, does have a fair amount of information.
It would seem this product works in a similar way to two other products that are available, whereby the beaded cord that attaches to the blinds is fed through a motorised wheel, which then pulls the cord through the wheel mechanism in order to open or close the blinds. According to the website, this product will work with;
- Roller Blinds
- Combi Blinds
- Venetian Blinds
- Vertical Blinds
- Roman Shades
- Curtain Draperies
Additional items on the website that are listed as HomeKit compatible, include three variations of a wired light switch – single, double, and triple button essentially. The dimensions of these would indicate they’re suitable for the EU and China rather than the US, however.
The company also have three switches designed for US dimensions, using touch-capacitive buttons on what appears to be a glass front, much like the Greenbank switches we reviewed last year. Note: The reason these are displays in landscape mode is that Taiwanese light switches and outlets are fitted this way. At present we don’t have confirmation that these are HomeKit compatible.
To round out the company’s lineup of wifi-based products, the company also have a 7W smart colour LED bulb, although there’s no information on the lumen count, and both a single and dual smart plug for the US, with the latter somewhat similar to the Satechi dual smart outlet that was released earlier this year, along with a Chinese smart plug.
The company also make a series of devices that use Zigbee, much like Aqara and Mijia, and as they’re Zigbee-based they require the company’s hub to both work, and get exposed to HomeKit;
The first three devices that work with the company’s Zigbee gateway are their Temperature and Humidity sensor, a Water Leak Sensor, and an Air Quality monitor, which seems to measure PM2.5, although if it’s anything like the Kaiterra Laser Egg series, then it may well have temperature and humidity sensors as well.
In terms of safety products, Waciao also have a Carbon monoxide sensor, which comes with an alarm, a motion sensor, and a smoke sensor, which also comes with a built-in alarm.
The last two devices as part of their Gateway Series are the Door and Window Sensor, and their Smart Scene Switch. The latter seems to be a programmable switch that can be programmed to do the usual scene switches, with four distinct areas showing icons, that possibly refer to dimming and brightening a light bulb or a group of lights, as well as a home button (maybe for deactivating an alarm) and a window or scene button. There’s no further information on this particular device at present however.
It’s exciting to see more new products on the market that work with HomeKit, even if the latter three are about to join an already crowded market, but the video doorbell and the blind motor are of particular interest, as the only HomeKit video doorbell on the market right now is still just the Robin, which is very expensive and not really suitable for many users. As for the blind motor, there’s nothing like this that officially works with HomeKit, so this is of great interest to many.
If you happen to be attending CES 2020 in Las Vegas, the company will be revealing their new products at the Sands Expo, booth number 43364.
* This article has been updated to include more devices revealed on the company’s website since this article was written.
Thanks to Bing Feng Yeh for the heads up!