Starling Home Hub adds two way audio support for Nest Cameras through HomeKit

While Nest products are quite popular, they do lack native HomeKit support. I reviewed the Starling Home Hub a few weeks back, and I’ve found it to be a very reliable way to add HomeKit support to all of Nest’s product lineup.

Overall, it’s a simple device. If you have Nest products you want to use with HomeKit, then purchase a hub from Starling Home for only $89 with no ongoing subscription fees. The box includes the hub, an ethernet cable, a power cable, and a quick start guide.

I’ve been monitoring the inventory all year, and it’s been back-ordered at various times, so it’s clearly a popular product. Again, if you are the type who wants to tinker and has an always-on computer, you can check out the homebridge-nest project on Github with homebridge. But the Starling Home Hub is perfect for those who want to unbox something and get to work without much fuss.

Today, version 5.0 of the firmware is now available. It adds a number of nice updates to the feature set. Most notable is now you can access two way voice for all of Nest’s cameras. This feature includes the Nest doorbell.

In this release, we’ve added support for 2-way audio (talkback) for all Nest cameras, so you can talk to people at your front door or in other rooms at home from the iOS Home app, or your Apple Watch.

Also in the Starling Home Hub 5.0 firmware is support for two-factor authentication for Nest accounts, added a low battery alert for temperature sensors, and fixed a number of other bugs.

All new boxes shipping today will include it, but existing customers can update for free by browsing to http://setup.starlinghome.io/ while on your local network.

If you already have a house full of Nest products, but want to add on HomeKit supporting without having to replace all of your thermostats, cameras, etc, check out the Starling Home Hub. It’s available for $89 with no monthly fees.

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