The idea of controlling home devices from far away with a single command has always been intriguing. Thanks to smart home technology, people are getting more options to explore smart home connectivity, with new manufacturers arising on the horizon. The matter is a new addition to this area that will hopefully level up the users’ experience. But wait, it’s not your typical home kit, only available for a handful of devices.
Matter comes with the opportunity to integrate more than 130 devices along with some of the most popular ecosystems like Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s HomeKit. But how did Matter manage to bring its very own competitors on the same page to have its back?
What is Matter?
Matter, formerly known as Connected Home over IP (CHIP), is a smart home connectivity Standard with open-source interoperability. It is backed by big fish in the home kit and connectivity industry, like Amazon, Apple, and Google.
The main point of attraction that Matter brings for us is the increased compatibility of smart home devices of different platforms. So, your Apple and Google Smart Home devices can be controlled under a single command from either Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, or even both. In addition, the users will have the freedom to have a customized setup with Matter Controller App. Usually, a device with the Matter logo can go into your shopping cart to be used for smart home automation under Matter.
Devices Supported by Matter 1.0
Apple, Samsung, Google and Amazon, and some other crucial players in the smart home connectivity standard alliance have agreed to update their existing products to support Matter. Eve Systems, Yale, Aqara, Nanoleaf, and Philip Hue are some of the notable companies that are fully on board to upgrade their devices to support Matter. Matter 1.0, the first version of the product, will have some limited specifications like Lightbulbs, door locks, and thermostats. Garage door controller, TV, and streaming devices. However, it is promised that the next Matter update will include robot vacuums, EV Charging, and other home appliances.
How Will Matter Work?
Matter will function on Wi-Fi and Internet Protocol with the help of other networking technologies like Bluetooth to assemble smart home devices. So, Matter will use Thread Networks like Ethernet and Bluetooth to connect the devices and operate them. Thread Network allows wireless connectivity among the home devices, and Bluetooth is used to connect the devices to the home kit initially. This is compatible with some existing home kits like Eve Weather, where the users need to connect the device through Bluetooth to the home kit service, and then the devices would follow ethernet for complete operability. Matter is also going to introduce QR codes on smart home devices to kick-start the setup swiftly.
The universal connectivity offerings of Matter are what make it the future of the smart home. One of the core issues that users have faced from the beginning is the separate language used by the devices from different manufacturers. Not to mention, these devices are operated through separate apps for connectivity. The matter comes with the solution to help smart home devices talk to each other and follow the same command. So, with the Matter setting, you won’t have to command your door Apple Smart Door Lock and Amazon Smart Thermostat separately. Instead, they are likely to communicate with each other and serve you whenever you need them.
However, there is a very low chance of companies like Google, Xiaomi, Amazon, and Apple working together to introduce smart home devices. They would continue working separately and manufacture more devices for smart home connectivity. But the customers would be on the safer side with Matter as more products are going to be available for them. Companies would also be able to make bigger sales with the introduction of Matter which can lower the prices of smart home devices.
There has been a concern about the privacy of user information and safety as Matter came to light. Smart home users naturally want privacy above anything. Matter is considered a safe option as it uses local networks like Bluetooth and Ethernet for connectivity. It is also to be noted that Matter has to follow the protocol designed by the manufacturers. So, if your smart home device needs to be operated on wi-fi, Matter has no choice but to connect them to the cloud system. However, with careful use and application, you can have a secured smart home system installed in your house.
No More Messy Hubs
Matter is also going to curb the use of hubs for connecting devices. More devices for smart homes means more hubs to connect them, which can create a big mess in your house. So, Matter has taken proactive action to address this issue. It uses Wi-Fi and Thread Network for connectivity that hardly needs hubs for inter-device communication. Also, some new devices like Apple TV 4K are trying to have an in-built radio thread for connectivity. This makes Matter more appealing for a long-term smart home solution. Not only this, companies like Aqara and Nanoleaf are willing to introduce their thread-enabled devices that can help to have fewer hubs in your home.
Is Matter the Future of Smart Home?
Matter is not necessarily the panacea of smart home connectivity. There is still more to learn about this innovation, and only the future can tell whether it is going to be a real revolutionary success. But with the information we have in store, it can be confidently said that Matter can give a more flexible option to users in terms of buying and using smart home devices. Users would be able to buy products that have the best features, designs, and quality without worrying about compatibility with the home kit program. Also, users will have more options along with lower prices. So, when Matter is not specifically changing the dynamics of smart home technology, its interoperability alone can make it a success.