How to Automate your home
1 Easily add automations
The button for creating a new automation is now a persistent + at the top of the page, rather than something you have to scroll down to. You still can’t rename or reorder automations.
2 Whole-family automation
Tap the +. Automations triggered by changes in people’s locations can consider your whole family, but only if they’re on iOS 11; if a kid’s iPod touch can’t run it, this won’t work for them.
3 Finer time constraints
Choose “During the day” or “At night” to automate on sunrise or sunset times; these adjust through the year. To adjust by up to an hour either way, tap “i” next to one of these.
4 Turn off an automation
The new Turn Off item at the last step of setting up an automation can be used to tell HomeKit accessories to switch off again after a few minutes – say, a hall light when you open a door.
5 Assign rooms to zones
Use this to say things like “Turn off downstairs lights” to Siri. Tap the Room tab, the list icon (top left), Room Settings, a room’s name, Zone, then Create. Type a name, then tap Done.
6 Rooms in multiple zones
Rooms can be in multiple zones – if your hall and landing share a light, say. In a room’s settings, tap zones you want to add the room to (indicated by a check mark). Tap again to remove it.
7 Delete a zone
Go to the Rooms tab, open the settings of any room that belongs to the unwanted zone, tap Zone to reveal a list of them, and then swipe left on the unwanted one for a Delete option.
8 Refined notifications
Notifications from accessories can also be restricted to occur only between certain times of the day, or based on family members’ locations. So, you can suppress them from a door’s contact sensor if someone is home, say, but otherwise receive them as a prompt to check your security camera or call the police.
Hold a finger on an accessory in the Home or Rooms tab, tap Details, then Status and Notifications. Turn on Allow Notifications, then set the Time and People items as you want.
Accessory notifications are per‑device settings, so consider whether you want to replicate them on your iPad or, indeed, on other family members’ devices.