As usual, HomeKit announcements are expected to be one of the biggest trends at CES this year. Today, home security company Schlage has announced an all-new Encode Plus Smart WiFi Deadbolt, and the company is going all in on Apple’s ecosystem with support for both HomeKit and home keys in the Apple Wallet application.
Apple’s home key feature was first announced at WWDC in June. When you add a home key to your Apple Wallet application, you can simply tap to unlock your door using your iPhone or Apple Watch, just like how Apple Pay currently works. Here’s how Apple explains the feature:
Add home keys to Wallet on iPhone and Apple Watch, then simply tap to unlock a compatible HomeKit door lock for seamless access to your home. Home keys live in the Wallet app with other important items like your car keys and credit cards.
The home key functionality works in addition to HomeKit, allowing you to control the Encode Plus via the Home application, with Siri, through automations, and by tapping on the lock itself using your iPhone and Apple Watch. The lock also features a keypad where you can manually lock or unlock it using a passcode.
The process of setting up a home key is also very simple. Once you add the lock itself to HomeKit, you can directly add a home key to the Wallet app on your iPhone and Apple Watch as well. You can also easily share Apple home keys with others for granting permanent or temporary access to the lock to friends and family members.
The new Schlage Encode Plus has been touted as the “first smart lock solution” in North America with support for both HomeKit and home keys. Note that Apple’s home key features require an iPhone XS or newer running iOS 15 or above, while Apple Watch support is limited to the Apple Watch Series 4 or newer running watchOS 8 or above.
Schlage says the new Encode Plus Smart WiFi Deadbolt will be available sometime in the spring for $299.99 MSRP. We’ll be sure to keep you in the loop when additional information is released.
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