Arrive Home - iPhone Presence

Trying to unlock back door when we arrive home Using iPhone 13.
Using rule, I look at iPhone and says presence, but door does not open. Do I need to buy subscription to have Habitat on my phone live all the time?

No subscription required for the Hubitat Mobile App presence feature to work.

A few requirements:

  • The Hubitat Mobile app must have "Allow Always" enabled for the iPhone Location Services
  • You must drag the Geofence 'Pin' to the correct location and radius in the Hubitat Mobile App's Geofence tab.
  • Your Hubitat Hub must have a reliable, consistent connection to the Hubitat Cloud server.

Assuming these are all correct, please open up the Hubitat Mobile Device for your iPhone on the Hubitat Hub. Click the 'Events' link near the top of the device page and look for 'presence' events. This will help determine whether or not the Hubitat App on your phone is consistently and reliably tracking your presence. If not, you can either try to determine why using the above items OR you might want to try a different option for geo-location based presence detection. Personally, I have found Life360 to work more reliably than Hubitat's mobile app. Life360 is free and there is built-in support for it from the Hubitat team.

Another viable option that I have also used is a tiny iPhone app called "Locative". This app definitely takes more effort to configure and get working with Hubitat, as one needs to use the built-in Hubitat Maker API app. Depending on your skill level, this might be trivial or it could be somewhat challenging.

In general, I avoid using geo-location to handle any security-related tasks like unlocking the house or opening/closing the garage door. There are just too many false updates, IMHO.


Ok thank you. Will try this tomorrow when I am more alert. Thabks

My favorite for iOS is Geofency. It can do a lot more than presence for Hubitat and has a Mac app as well.

Another alternative is to use native Apple presence. You need to have a Homebridge instance running somewhere, an Apple TV or HomePod, and a Hubitat virtual combined presence/switch device, and 2 Apple Home automations (1 for arriving, 1 for leaving).


I use the iOS shortcut (correction Home automation) method. Absolutely foolproof. The hubitat app doesn't always work for me either.

EDIT: My bad, I said shortcuts but I really meant automations. Sorry for any confusion.

Here's a couple of links to the method:


I've tried IOS shortcuts and every time I arrive and/or leave, a message pops up on my phone screen that asks me to confirm, after having researched this a bit, I found out that arrival/departure automations require confirmation all the time (and they call it automations anyway). What exactly are you doing that makes it automated, because I would love to add this new layer to my system.

I hope this is not the case, I just ordered a new Apple TV, so I could have my presence known to open the door. UGHH

Doesn’t happen to me:

You could team the geofencing with [UPDATED] iPhone WiFi Presence Sensor if your wifi can reach your phone while outside

You are using Apple Home Automation. The Q is about using iOS Shortcuts. The only reason to use Shortcuts is if you don't have a Apple TV/HomePod/Homebridge setup, I think.

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I see from your screenshot that you are using My Home automations, @DiverRich was talking about Shortcuts, that is not the same and not what I really want to do. Shortcuts does not require you have an AppleTV or some other local always on IOS device.

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@DiverRich, after reading again your post, the links you suggest are MyHome automations, not IOS Shortcuts automations, not the same at all. So I'm guessing you have an AppleTV or HomePod in the setup that would explain why you don't have to confirm anything like in IOS Shortcuts.

Sorry for my ignorance, what is Shortcuts. I would rather not purchase another device to just open the door. We liar out in the country, no one around, and would be nice bringing groceries in, that things open up when we drive in.

The Apple TV/Homebridge setup works well for me. I also have some device that can only be connected through HomeKit, so I was setting up Homebridge anyway.

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I would not recommend this but it's your house. I use it only to control thermostats when away, turn light on or brighter when we arrive, etc. Not to unlock doors or open garage doors, etc.

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@nclark - Yeah, my bad. I did mean automations. Nonetheless, they work like a charm. Hasn't failed me even once. I'd say the Hubitat app probably works 95% of the time now. This all works quite well particularly when using @joelwetzel's Combined Presence and iPhone Wi-Fi Presence apps.

ok thanks, I did some tests last night just in case a recent update had changed things but nothing changed on that side of things :frowning: I guess I'll get my AppleTV that was at my cottage and replace it with a FireTV stick, it was what I was planning on doing for some time but was more in line of getting rid of the AppleTV all together, not have it back at the main house :man_facepalming:

I've been using that app for some time also in combination with Alexa presence, did not get around doing the WIFI presence yet but maybe will for reliability. Thanks again!

I’m new to Homekit, but not new to smart home hubs nor automations. I got one of our iPhones Presence sensors working on Homekit, but for some reason, can’t get my main iphone working on Homekit. I already did hard reset on phone but no avail.

Any suggestions?

For anyone who comes across this, here is another option (along with a great tutorial on how to set it up) that works well with iPhone.