Considering Hubitat for Apple Centric Apartment

Hi all! I'm seriously considering entering the Hubitat world and want to make sure I can check all the boxes for myself and the WAF....Ultimately we would look to pick up our little Hubitat ecosystem and move it into a house when we buy one. I figure I can start fairly basic in an apartment controlling a few devices in an apartment when I'm not controlling a lot of devices or 'critical' devices. I'll try to break it down to make sense below!! I will also note that I'm note necessarily afraid of the time and troubleshooting that might go into complex routines or learning Rulemanager...

TODAY: I want to be able to control Phillips Hue Lights (with a bridge) and a few smart plugs. I want to be able to use the few google home minis we have to be able to use spoken commands to turn lights on or off if we need to. Up to this point my understanding is Hubitat would easily be able to do this 'out of the box' without too much tinkering. From there I can create various automations. I also want to be able to use the homekit app to control or check in on device status's while I am away. From my research it seems like I would need to setup a Pi with homebridge in order to do this. Am I correct in thinking that Hubitat would be able to accomplish all of this with minimal tinkering (except the homekit part)?

Future: Be able to do everything as described above except on a larger scale and add Lutron Caseta to the system. I'm also wondering if (it appears that I can) I can port in Nest devices (cameras and thermostat) into Hubitat... My research on that turned up conflicting results...

I also have some WeMo plugs currently but from my research it seems like the amount of time to get them to port into Hubitat equals the cost of buying a few new Zwave/Zbee plugs...

I look forward to entering the Hubitat community! Like I said before this is/will become a hobby of mine so the additional setup compared to something like smartthings isn't necessarily a problem for me. I just need it to be snappy with commands, reliable, and easy to set up for my wife to use when I am not around (think switches, google mini, or the homekit app). I have dabbled in programming and while I don't love it with good instruction I can wade my way through it.

Rulemachine.. not rulemanager (hangs head in shame)

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All accurate, except Nest. No offical camera support of any kind at the moment, and the official integration never made it beyond a small group of testers, since Google killed the works with Nest program. Existing users can keep functionality with it for now, but that will go away when the new integration program gets all that it needs. Unfortunately they decided to launch without all their ducks in a row, and Google has had to do some significant back peddling.

If you’re planning to use Homebridge later on, there will be some level of functionality via for that connection. I’m using Homebridge with HomeKit automations right now to connect my four Nest Protects to virtual switches in Hubitat. This allows me to turn on lights in the event if a CO or a Smoke emergency.


Am I correct in thinking that via Homebridge I could control a smart plug or a Hue device via the Homekit app on my iPhone?

Thanks for answering so quickly!

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You can, but the Hue is natively HomeKit, so it doesn’t need Homebridge. Most other devices in HE can be exposed to HomeKit via Homebridge, including locks. If the device is HomeKit only, then what you do is create a virtual switch on HE. You then expose the virtual switch to HomeKit via Homebridge and then create a HomeKit automation so when the HE virtual switch turns on, the HomeKit device turns on, and when the virtual switch turns off, the HomeKit device turns off. This works for HomeKit sensors too.

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Got it. So if I have a Zwave or Zbee device I can expose it to Homekit via Homebridge. Will HE recognize that a Hue bulb is 'on' or 'dimmed at 50%' if that is controlled via Homekit? Based on what I've read it looks like HE will and turning something on or off via Homekit remotely wouldn't interfere with a HE routine or rule that was set.

I really appreciate all your help @SmartHomePrimer! I think the biggest learning curve for me is going to be understanding the inner workings of homebridge with HE...

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Yes to all. Setting it up is the most difficult part the first time you do it, and it actually is not all that hard to do.

After it’s setup, adding a device from HE to be used in HomeKit is just checking a box next to the device name in the MakerAPI app.

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After watching all the videos it seems like its fairly straight forward.
Is MakerAPI required for Homebridge interface with HE? I thought through the Homebridge app in HE? Sorry if that's a totally ignorant question...

There was an early version that didn’t use MakerAPI, which is a native HE app, but this new version that uses it is much faster (like instant), and very stable.

For ease of use, I named my MakerAPI app in HE to be “Homebridge” so I could recognize it quickly in the apps list. But it’s not a specific app for Homebridge. MakerAPI can be used for lots of stuff. The Homebridge application itself runs on Node.js on a separate always on computer like a Raspberry Pi. I personally run mine on an old MacBook Pro, along with several other Node.js applications.

I understand now.. A lot of the articles I was reading were older and were discussing Homebridge as a standalone app.

I was planning on using a Raspberry Pi Zero to run Homebridge. Do you run any other applications for Hubitat? Would you recommend anything else for a complete newbie?

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I ran the old Homebridge on a Pi Zero W for a little while. It was a bit slow. Not sure how well it would work now.

I also run Google Assistant Relay, CastWeb API, and Insteon server

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@SmartHomePrimer I really appreciate all the help! With all my questions put to rest I just ordered one!