Home Automation with Homebridge

If you’ve been following my home automation activities, then you know that I’ve been fairly invested in using Alexa. Even though I live in an RV which basically has only 3 rooms, I am using 4 (sometimes 5) Echo devices. These provide a very rich voice control experience and I’ve been very happy with them.

I’ve experimented off and on over the past 5 years with integrating iOS and Siri, and until recently have been unhappy with the results. Sure, I created an iOS app to interface with Patriot, but that was basically just a backup in case Alexa wasn’t working.

Recently I took another look at Homebridge, and was blown away. Since I’m already running an MQTT broker on a Mac Mini, it was super easy to spin up Homebridge on it also, and then install Homebridge-MQTTThing to HomeKit to MQTT and thus Patriot. This allows me to use the Apple Home app for use on iOS devices, and allows me to retire my custom iOS app. It also allows me to retire my Alexa skill and switch to the Homebridge-Alexa plugin. This setup is very robust, and completely eliminates the need for me to maintain my own custom iOS apps and Alexa code. This will leave me more time to focus on Patriot improvements.

I’ll be updating the Patriot Github package to document how to integrate Homebridge with it for a more robust system, while leaving it available for dirt simple Photon setups.