The Connectivity Standards Alliance has released the final Matter 1.0 standard and announced a certification program. The official Matter launch event is scheduled for November 3rd, but the first Matter devices could arrive any day now.
Today, Matter certification labs are up and running, the SDK is complete, and companies can start manufacturing, upgrading, and getting official Matter approval for their devices.
While the specification has just been finalized, several companies have been working on Matter-compatible products through the early access program, meaning we could see Matter devices any day now. “We had a strong group of companies that were involved in our testing process,” said CSA’s Michele Mindala-Freeman. “These will be some of the first products to be available under the Matter brand.”
Matter is a universal connectivity standard designed to make smart home devices easier to use. By giving the door lock and light bulb the ability to communicate directly with each other, either via Wi-Fi or a newer protocol called Thread, Matter should make the smart home faster and more responsive. It should also make the setup process easier as compatible devices will automatically show up on your smartphone so you can pair them. Plus, with a single connectivity standard that’s local to your home and independent of the cloud, your devices can be controlled by more than one smart home ecosystem or voice assistant.
However, this is not a quick approach, as Matter’s original specification only covers a limited number of device categories. The CSA said it is developing specifications for more devices, including popular categories such as security cameras and robotic vacuum cleaners. But at launch, compatible devices will be limited to smart bulbs and fixtures, sockets and switches, thermostats and other climate controls, curtains, sensors, locks, and media devices, including TVs.
Google has announced that all of its Nest smart speakers and displays will be upgraded to Matter controllers. Some of them, including the Nest Hub Max, Nest Hub (2nd generation) and its Nest Wifi routers, will also be Thread’s edge routers. They and, for example, the Amazon Echo smart speaker, will be able to act as a channel for data exchange between devices and as an interface to control your devices using a voice or touch interface.
Smartphone apps like Google Home and Apple Home will also be Matter controllers. Bridges can also be certified by Matter to include their connected products in the Matter ecosystem. For example, Signify, the owner of Philips Hue, said its smart lighting control bridge will be upgraded to Matter, allowing lighting to be controlled with any Matter controller without a lighting upgrade.
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