New Patent Details Apple's Home Automation Plans

Almost as if on cue following reports that Apple is working on its own home automation platform, a patent application from the company was published showing part of what could turn into an iPhone and Apple TV-controlled smart home. Along with controlling devices in your home, it could also handle your home entertainment needs, and act as a video and audio communication system, too.

Apple patent application reveals home automation plansApple patent application reveals home automation plans

Apple's patent application details what amounts to a automation and communication nexus, according to Patently Apple, driving both home entertainment systems and what sounds like FaceTime calls on your television. Apple describes the system as supporting voice, audio, video and data content.

The system creates a standard so third party companies can build their own products for a smart home system that all intercommunicate through Apple's hub. Once connected, the devices can all work in concert and exchange information while being controlled from a single app both locally and remotely.

Apple is reportedly planning on unveiling its home automation platform next week at its annual Worldwide Developer Conference, and that system is said to use the iPhone as a controller and a trigger to activate actions based on proximity. The system could, for example, turn on the lights when you get home or turn down the heat when you leave.

Considering developers would need some time to start working on new products, or at least adding support for Apple's system to current devices, WWDC is the perfect place for the announcement to happen. If Apple does take us down the home automation path, we'll likely get a glimpse of what's in store on Monday. Get ready for what could be a really exciting keynote event.