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How to use an iPad as a smart home hub

Person using iPad as smart home hub

So you're building your smart home with devices like smart security cameras and lights, and you're wondering about using your iPad® as a smart home hub. Good news: An iPad will work as your hub, and we can help you get connected.

At Asurion, we protect and fix your tech. We can also help you set up your gadgets and make sure they work together, whether your iPad won't sync with your computer or you want to connect two pairs of AirPods® to your devices. Here's our guide to setting up your home hub with an iPad.

What's a smart home hub?

Every smart home begins with a hub. This device is the brain of the operation, connecting to and communicating with all your other gadgets over Wi-Fi. Cool, right? Want to use your iPad as a home hub? You'll need to start with HomeKit®.

Connect to Apple HomeKit

To control your smart home devices with your iPad, you'll first need to connect to Apple® HomeKit, a smart home platform designed to let you control various internet-connected home devices like thermostats, plugs, and video doorbells.

To get started, purchase any HomeKit-enabled device, like a smart plug, light bulb, or Apple TV®, then:

  1. Open the Home app (preinstalled on all iOS devices) on your iPhone®, iPad, or Mac®.
  2. Tap the Add Accessory button, then follow the steps after it opens the rear camera.
  3. Use the camera to scan the HomeKit QR code on the smart home device and add it to your framework.

How to use an iPad as a smart home hub

To use your iPad as a hub, it must be in your home, turned on, and connected to your home Wi-Fi network. Here's how to set it up:

  1. Open Settings, tap your name, and make sure that you're signed in to iCloud® with the Apple ID that you used to set up your HomeKit and Matter accessories in the Home app.
  2. Tap iCloud, then scroll down and make sure Home is turned on under Apps Using iCloud.
  3. Tap Settings > Home and turn on Use this iPadas a Home Hub.

Once you're set up, you can give voice commands to Siri on your iOS® device (“Siri, turn on the bedroom light," or “Siri, what's the temperature?), depending on which smart home gadgets you've installed.

Note: According to Apple, iPad is not supported as a home hub on the new Home architecture, which will be available as a separate upgrade in the Home app.

You may continue to use your iPad as a smart home hub with iPadOS®16, but you won't be able to use any new features. Consider using HomePod®, HomePod mini®, or Apple TV as your home hub if you'd like to try the new functions.

What to do if your iPad isn't working as your smart home hub

Here's what to do if you're having trouble:

  1. Make sure your iPad is up to date.
  2. Confirm that the primary Home app user is signed in to iCloud on your iPad—not a guest.
  3. Turn on iCloud Keychain and two-factor authentication for your Apple ID.
  4. Check that your iPad is in your home, turned on, and connected to your home Wi-Fi network.

Tech is expensive. Protect it all.

Protect the devices your family loves and relies on with one simple plan. With Asurion Home+, we cover your computers, TVs, tablets, premium headphones, smart devices, and so much more—plus, 24/7 live support for your tech care needs—for less than $1 per day. Learn more about Asurion Home+ coverage and how you can get peace-of-mind electronics protection.


*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*

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