Homebridge vs Home Assistant: Which Is Better?

Homebridge is a tool that allows you to integrate smart home devices and gain more control over how they work.

It is a lightweight NodeJS server that you can install on your home network to simplify smart home management.

Home Assistant is one of the most popular options for people who wish to enjoy the benefits of a smart home without compromising their privacy. Its automation features give you complete control over your smart home.

Home Assistant comes in the form of a hardware or software solution.

Both Homebridge and Home Assistant serve the same purposes. Each one has its unique benefits and downsides. Understanding these two aspects can be key to ensuring that you pick the most suitable for your needs.

Luckily, I have created a detailed comparison of the two to make it easier for you to know which one is better.

Read on.

Getting Started


Getting started with Homebridge is pretty easy. All you have to do is determine your primary operating system and then scroll through the options on the installation page.

Pick the version of the software that is compatible with your system and download it. The software comes with a straightforward installation wizard so you should be able to set it up without requiring any further assistance.

Once everything is in place, connect Homebridge to Homekit to unlock its full potential, and then let it scan the network to find all compatible devices.

You should also consider installing as many plugins as possible since this will enhance overall functionality.

The entire process of installation and configuration is automated so all you’ll need to do is approve a few prompts and let the system handle everything else.

Also Read: HOOBS vs Homebridge

Home Assistant

The first step to starting with Home Assistant is installing it on your device. One way to do this is to acquire the Home Assistant Green or Yellow hardware which offers plug-and-play functionality.

There is also an option to install it using a Raspberry Pi device. However, this will require some time and skills as it can be quite challenging for someone with little to no experience working with the device.

There is also another option to install Home Assistant on virtualized environments to make it compatible with various operating systems. Once the installation process is done, you will need to complete the onboarding stage.

This is where you create your profile and then integrate it with other software. It will also scan through your network and give you a list of the smart devices that can be connected.

One of the best things about Home Assistant is that it offers users a lot of freedom to set up things manually. This can be done by accessing the dashboard and editing a variety of functions.

Homebridge is by far the easiest to set up and get started. On the other hand, Home Assitant offers users more flexibility to determine how they want the system to operate.

Interface and Customization


The Homebridge user interface is a web-based management tool that allows you to control different aspects of the program. It takes a minimalist approach to things which is why it is considered one of the best in the category.

As you launch the UI, you’ll notice a clean page with a few labeled sections at the top left side of the screen. The sections include Status, Plugins, Configuration, and Accessories.

Clicking on Status will bring up the dashboard. Keep in mind that it has a widget-based design making it possible for you to customize many sections.

There are many themes to use including those that can change the background. Clicking on the Plugins section will bring up a page that shows all the plugins you have installed so far.

It is on this page that you can add, upgrade, or remove the extensions. The Configuration section allows you to modify your Homebridge system to suit your preferences.

The Accessories section is where you can find all the accessories connected to the system. It is a good addition since it works seamlessly on both desktop and mobile devices allowing you to control different aspects remotely.

The Homebridge UI is compatible with a variety of web browsers including Chrome, Safari, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge.

Home Assistant

Home Assistant takes a more technical approach when it comes to its user interface design. This is done to give users more freedom to decide how they want to control their system.

A downside to this design is that inexperienced users may sometimes feel overwhelmed by the number of materials they have to read to start setting up their UI. The good news is that there is plenty of information to help anyone find their way.

One of the most outstanding things about the interface is that it allows users to choose from several dashboard designs. This means you can go to the dashboards section and pick the one that most suits your preference.

You also get the option to pick the type of icons you would like to use on the interface. With that in mind, it is easy to understand why different people are likely to have a Home Assistant system with different UI designs.

Overall, the Homebridge user interface is quite simple and makes it easy for just about anyone to gain control of their smart home devices quickly.

On the other hand, the Home Assistant interface is quite complex and may present some challenges for casual users. However, it offers an exceptional design for skilled users who want to gain control of almost every aspect of their smart home.

Standout Features and Functionalities


One of the most important features of Homebridge is that it is compatible with many plugins and extensions. This makes it possible for you to connect many peripheral devices.

Additionally, you get to enhance its functionality. Another thing to keep in mind is that it connects to Siri making it possible for you to control your smart home devices through voice commands.

The web-based design of the interface makes it possible for you to gain control of your smart home regardless of your location. As long as you are connected to the internet, you can always keep an eye on whatever is happening at home.

Homebridge includes support for KNX making it easy for everyone connected to the system to find the most accurate information without having to consult another.

With the relevant plugin, you can control how your smart cameras work. You can even stream footage from your cameras on your mobile device.

Another thing you can do is automate a variety of processes in your home. For instance, you can set the system to turn on or switch off the lights at specific times.

Homebridge can make it possible for you to operate smart appliances, improve overall home security, and even simplify complex tasks such as setting room temperatures to the optimal level.

Home Assistant

Home Assistant integrates with over 2,700 plugins which is why you can make it work with a lot of peripheral devices. Its interface has a Light and Dark mode meaning you can switch from one to another depending on the prevailing lighting conditions.

Unlike some alternatives in this category, it does not run any third-party advertisements so you won’t need to worry about annoying pop-ups. The tool is quite big on privacy which is why it includes state-of-the-art encryption.

That means no third-party entity can access your data even when you are connected through the internet. That also means that you do not have to worry about getting tracked.

Depending on the plugins you choose you can get it to perform a variety of tasks. For instance, you can connect it to your home cameras so that you get a live stream of whatever is happening in your house.

You can also use it to operate smart appliances and electronics. Additionally, you can use it to automate processes such as turning on and off the lights, setting the room’s temperature, and managing power usage.

Like Homebridge, Home Assistant allows you to use voice commands when you are at home.

When it comes to the features and functionalities of both Homebridge and Home Assistant, it is hard to determine which comes out on top. Their features and functionalities are almost identical.

Ease of Use


When it comes to ease of use, there is no question that Homebridge has the upper hand. For starters, getting started with it is a breeze.

Its minimalist interface allows everyone to get acquainted with how everything works quickly. It has straightforward prompts meaning you can get things to work with a simple click on a button.

It even accepts voice commands so you don’t have to spend time pressing “on” buttons. Another thing that makes it a good option is that it works both locally and remotely.

That means you can use it without an internet connection at home. In case you are away, you can simply connect to the internet and still enjoy almost full control of your smart home.

Home Assistant

Home Assistant is not the easiest to use especially considering its complicated installation and setup process. Its interface requires a lot of customization before you finally get everything right.

Even if you get everything set up correctly, you can only use the Home Assistant interface when you are at home. If you want to keep enjoying control while away, you’ll need to subscribe to a paid plan known as Nabu Casa.

Overall, when it comes to ease of use, Homebridge undoubtedly takes the crown.

Pricing and Compatibility


Homebridge is available to download and use completely free of charge.

It is compatible with a variety of operating systems including Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android.

Users can also install the software on Raspberry Pi and Docker devices.

Home Assistant

The Home Assistant software is available to download and install completely free of charge. This will only work if you install it in a virtualized environment.

However, if you do not have the knowledge or time to go through the hectic installation process, you can opt to buy hardware with the tool pre-installed.

Home Assistant Green is a portable device that costs $99 and conforms to the plug-and-play design so you won’t have to do anything else to get started.

Home Assistant Yellow is another alternative you can opt for. It comes in different versions with some offering more functionality than others. Depending on the version you pick, you can expect to spend anywhere from $120 to $160.

If you install the software in a virtualized environment, you’ll only be able to access the interface when connected to the local network.

If you wish to control your smart home remotely, you must subscribe to the Home Assistant Cloud service, Nabu Casa.

The service offers a 31-day free trial period so you can test it out before you decide if it is ideal for your needs. You can opt to pay a monthly subscription fee of $6.50 or go for the annual plan that costs $65.00.

The Home Assistant software is compatible with many operating systems. Some of these include Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, Python, Raspberry Pi, Kodi, iOS, and self-hosting.

Mobile Apps and Integrations


Homebridge has an iOS companion app known as Homemanager. It offers fully API-based connections for convenience.

It also has full support for HOOBS systems. One of the best things about this app is that it includes detailed instructions and guides on how to use different functions.

It has a clean interface that makes it easy for just about anyone to get started. The app incorporates visual configuration support for over 900 plugins so you won’t have to rely on text only.

Some of the most popular integrations for Homebridge include Ring, TP-Link Kasa Smart Home, Belkin Wemo, Siri, SwitchBot, UniFi Protect, and Nest.

Home Assistant

Home Assistant has a companion mobile app that can help you simplify the way your smart home works. The app is available for both Android and iOS users with direct links for download available on the App Store and Google Play.

With this app installed on your device, you can control your smart home from anywhere as long as you are connected to the internet. You get to watch live surveillance streams, turn on the lights, operate appliances, and much more.

Some of the most popular Home Assistant integrations include Apple TV, Nest, MySensors, Google Assistant, Belkin WeMo, Dark Sky, and Amazon Echo, among others.

Wrapping Up

While both Homebridge and Home Assistant are excellent tools for automation, each one has its pros and cons. It is up to you to scrutinize the details above and choose the one most suitable for your needs.

While Homebridge is a good option for anyone who wants a simple tool to manage their smart home without spending any money, Home Assistant offers more flexibility and personalization features when it comes to smart home management.

About Author

Tom loves to write on technology, e-commerce & internet marketing. I started my first e-commerce company in college, designing and selling t-shirts for my campus bar crawl using print-on-demand. Having successfully established multiple 6 & 7-figure e-commerce businesses (in women’s fashion and hiking gear), I think I can share a tip or 2 to help you succeed.