Apple's Home app gives you an array of controls for your HomeKit enabled tech. You can turn things on and off, change their settings, add devices to scenes and even set up automations based on your whereabouts or the time of day.
But chances are, you don't live alone. You probably share your home with family members or housemates. And just because it was you who set up your Apple Home, that doesn't mean that you don't want the people you live with to also be able to use Siri and the Home app to control your connected tech.
The good news is you don't have to give your friends and family your Apple ID and iCloud passwords. You can grant them guest access to your HomeKit setup within the Apple Home app. Here's how…
How to share Apple HomeKit access
The first thing you'll need to do is to make sure that you're operating your HomeKit setup on an Apple Home Hub – i.e an iPad, Apple TV or HomePod. If you're simply running the show on your iPhone then you won't be able to share access with other people. If you are on a Hub (we'd recommend Apple TV or a HomePod as they are always on) then you're good to go.
You and the people you want to share with both have to be running iOS 11.2.5 or later and signed into iCloud.
- Open the Home app and then tap the little arrow in the top left corner.
- Tap 'Invite' and, on the next screen add their Apple ID (the one they sign into iCloud with).
- Tap 'Send Invite'.
It's as easy as that.
What shared HomeKit users can do
Essentially, 'guests' on your HomeKit setup have access to view all of the devices and rooms on your system, and use the controls. So they can check and change temperatures, alter the lights, check air quality levels and so on. If you can see it in the Home app, then so can they.
However, by default, they can only do this from inside the house (and connected to the home Wi-Fi) and they can't make any changes.
You can change the HomeKit settings for shared users though the Home app. Simply tap that same little arrow in the top corner of the Home app that you used to add them and then tap on the name of the person you want to amend permissions for. From there you can…
- 'Allow Remote Access' to allow people to control your HomeKit devices from anywhere, as long as they have a signal on their iPhone.
- 'Allow Editing' to give them the rights to add and remove accessories or scenes; and also invite other users themselves.