Announced way back at CES 2017, the Eve Extend from Eve Systems has yet to make its retail appearance as of yet. While the company has stayed quiet regarding its status, it is has become pretty apparent that device extenders for HomeKit hit a snag in the approval process by Apple, as Eve was not the only one to announce such as device. This may be changing soon though, with Eve submitting their device for FCC testing late last month. In the filing, the device itself is shown off, as well as the instruction manual, suggesting that its release may be imminent.
Eve Extend, Bluetooth Device Extender
Evidence that the Eve Extend has been waiting patiently for its time to shine is the design language that is shown in the recent FCC filings. The Extend which was depicted in testing shows that it will be using the “older” or “original” Eve designs, which consists of a plain white plastic box, with minimal branding. The Extend looks extremely similar to the original Eve Room, which was a device that measured Air Quality among other things, and it would not surprise us if it was the exact same size. On the back of the Eve Extend, we can see a small reset button, and a Micro-USB port that powers the device.
Now when it comes to functionality, there, unfortunately, is some good and bad news. The Eve Extend, which is designed to “extend” the reach of your Bluetooth based devices will work essentially as a hub and will relay or translate commands to your home network via Wi-Fi. Unfortunately, we have learned that this will only work for devices made by Eve, and will not work with any other manufacturer’s devices, even if they use Bluetooth for connectivity. We assume that this was the main reason behind the delay in getting the device to the market, as it seems that this is either a limitation of HomeKit in general or if it is something merely imposed by Apple.
Even with the somewhat limited capabilities of the Eve Extend, we are still looking forward to it finally seeing the light of day and will be picking one up as soon as it is released. We will be interested to see if response times are affected with devices that connect directly to the Extend, as well as overall HomeKit performance with a potentially lighter load for the main HomeKit hub. What do you think of the Eve Extend? Is this a device that you will be picking up even though it only supports Eve products?