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Apple alumni reveal HomeKit-compatible Latch C smart lock for business, apartments

Smart lock startup company Latch has unveiled the enterprise and apartment-oriented Latch C —its first smart lock certified to work with HomeKit.

According to the company, the Latch C is the first "enterprise-certified" smart lock for HomeKit. The lock includes wi-fi, Bluetooth, and near-field communication for unlocking, and a wide-angle camera and a touchscreen. A conventional keyhole allows for physical access as well.

The lock is designed for apartment doors with deadbolt hardware. The company's mortise locks and electronic access hardware is not HomeKit-compatible.

The company claims that six AA batteries last for up to 12 months with normal usage.

"The mortise product [Latch M] is required by law in most major urban markets," Latch co-founder Luke Schoenfelder told Techcrunch on Tuesday. "With the C, we're able to work on any apartment door in the U.S., so this really just completes the suite."

Schoenfelder and Chief Design Officer Thomas Meyerhoffer were once Apple employees. Schoenfelder was Apple's head of Worldwide Government Affairs between 2008 and 2012.

Meyerhoffer is a renowned designer, and was Jony Ives's first hire. His most notable product was the eMate —and he left the company shortly after it was complete.

The Latch C costs $299 per lock, not including the cost of a required Latch monthly subscription. Pre-orders have commenced, with deliveries of the lock expected in the fall.