Seeking Parity: The Quest for a Home Assistant Companion App on Windows

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Close-up of a laptop keyboard with a focus on the Windows key, which is marked with the Windows logo. The keys are black with white lettering, and the photo's shallow depth of field places emphasis on the Windows key, while the surrounding keys fade into the background.

Microsoft Windows users who manage their smart homes via Home Assistant may feel sidelined compared to their macOS-using peers. The macOS Home Assistant companion app offers robust functionality, turning Mac devices into automated presence sensors and streamlining smart home management. Unfortunately, Windows users are left wondering when they might receive a similar tool tailored to their platform.


The Apple Advantage: Integrated Ecosystem and Developer Tools

Apple's ecosystem exemplifies integration, with seamless device connectivity from AirPods to Macs, underscored by instant photo sync and device pairing. This interconnectedness not only enhances user experience but also simplifies development processes through utilities like Mac Catalyst, which allows iPad apps to be smoothly transitioned to macOS with minimal adjustments. The Home Assistant app for macOS benefits from this, being a modified version of its iPad app.

The Challenges with Windows

In contrast, the Windows platform presents a fragmented landscape, lacking a unified framework like Mac Catalyst that facilitates the easy adaptation of apps across different devices. Since the discontinuation of Windows Phone and the pivot towards partnerships with Android OEMs, Microsoft has not provided an equivalent tool that supports such seamless transitions. This complicates the development of a native Home Assistant app for Windows, relegating users to web-based solutions or third-party applications which, while functional, fail to match the native app experience of macOS.

A line-up of open laptops on display in a store, each showing the Windows desktop screen with the start menu visible, set against a blurred background of store shelves and lighting.

Why Porting to Windows Isn't Feasible Yet

Porting an iPadOS app to Windows would be a colossal task, practically akin to starting from scratch. The diverse hardware ecosystem within Windows, including various CPU and GPU configurations and the dominant use of x86 architecture as opposed to Apple's ARM-based chips, adds layers of complexity to app development.

While we at Home Assistant Guide don't advocate for Apple's walled garden approach, it's hard to deny that the consistency across their devices makes it easier for developers to create a seamless user experience. Windows, on the other hand, is anything but consistent.

A MacBook on a wooden table with its screen and Apple logo visible, accompanied by an iPhone with a triple camera setup lying next to it.

Alternative Approaches: Progressive Web Apps and More

The most pragmatic alternative to a native app is the deployment of a Progressive Web App (PWA), which offers a native-like interface and functionality through modern web technologies. PWAs are supported by most browsers and can be easily installed on any Windows machine.

For those with limited device integration needs, the recently ported HA Menu is worth considering. Additionally, there are several options for gathering data from a Windows machine in Home Assistant, such as the HASS Workstation Service and IOT Link.

The Imperfect Stopgap: Home Assistant Android App on Windows

The introduction of Android apps on Windows 11, while promising, is still in its nascent stages and comes with significant limitations due to its operation within a virtual environment. This restricts hardware access, essential for the Home Assistant Companion App for Android to function effectively, particularly in sensor data utilization like camera activity detection. As a result, it's unlikely that the app could accurately detect camera usage by other applications like Teams or Zoom. Furthermore, the app's ability to collect basic information, such as battery percentage, remains uncertain.


Windows users have viable alternatives, but none that offer the seamless, integrated experience of a native Home Assistant Companion App. As the landscape evolves, perhaps Microsoft will offer tools akin to Mac Catalyst, or the Home Assistant team will prioritize development for Windows. Until then, the community must rely on available workarounds and hope for future enhancements that bring parity to the smart home management experience across all platforms.

Exploring these alternatives not only mitigates the current gaps but also prepares users for potential future integrations, keeping the smart home ecosystem robust and versatile.

A portrait photo oif Liam Alexander Colman, the author, creator, and owner of Home Assistant Guide wearing a suit.

About Liam Alexander Colman

is an experienced Home Assistant user who has been utilizing the platform for a variety of projects over an extended period. His journey began with a Raspberry Pi, which quickly grew to three Raspberry Pis and eventually a full-fledged server. Liam's current operating system of choice is Unraid, with Home Assistant comfortably running in a Docker container.
With a deep understanding of the intricacies of Home Assistant, Liam has an impressive setup, consisting of various Zigbee devices, and seamless integrations with existing products such as his Android TV box. For those interested in learning more about Liam's experience with Home Assistant, he shares his insights on how he first started using the platform and his subsequent journey.


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