A few days ago, close to the presentation of iPadOS 16 during WWDC 2022; it emerged that with the new operating system, Apple’s iPad tablets would have lost the ability to function as a Home hub for reasons of logic and organization of the smart home platform. However, in the past few hours, Apple spokeswoman Catherine Franklin has contacted The Verge to specify that this will not be the case.
Franklin says that essentially with iPadOS 16 and iOS 16; iPads will continue to be supported as Home hubs “exactly as before”; and while this is technically true it is essential to point out that a new architecture is on the way for Home; which will not be available if you use the app on iPadOS 16.
In iPadOS 16, Apple claims that iPads will still function as Home hubs, but there is a catch
Basically, users will have to choose: new architecture, more efficient and reliable; but only on HomePod (also Mini) and Apple TV (HD and 4K), or old architecture with support also for iPad. Apple says the upgrade option will be available to users directly in the Home app; in an iPadOS 16 update following its release.
“Alongside these releases, the Home app will introduce a new architecture for an even more efficient and reliable experience. Because iPad will not get support as a home hub with the new architecture, users who rely on iPad for that purpose do not need to update the Home architecture and can continue enjoying all existing features”.
For the moment, Apple has remained very vague about the specific details of this “new architecture”. It should have to do with adopting the smart home communication standard Matter; which iPads won’t support for sure (at least, that was the official announcement at the time). For now, let’s take notes and wait to understand what exactly will change when it becomes available.