I have a number of “smart lights” at home from 3 different vendors. I recently had to change to a new iPhone, and after restoring from a backup, some of my carefully setup lights stopped working in the Apple Home (HomeKit) application. The funny thing was the lights were still working with their vendor-specific apps.

My attempts to persuade the vendor-specific apps to reinstall the light with HomeKit were fruiteless. I tried to re-add the lights to the Home app, and despite the process starting well (the ligth was detected by the Home app), then after a long wait I was getting an error saying that the connection had failed.

I tried reseting the lights, uninstalling the vendor-specific apps, etc. Nothing was working.

It took me a while to figure out that the problem was the wifi. These devices are compatible only with 2.4GHz wifi. I have a Synology router which supports both 5GHz and 2.4GHz. Until some time ago, it was announcing those two frequencies as different wifis, each with its own SSID. But recently (did I change that?) it started bundling both wifis under a single SSID. I went to the Synology router admin screens, found the setting to “unbundle” the two wifis, and then switched my phone to the 2.4GHz wifi, which finally allowed me to complete the setup!