Material is the new standard for smart home and these are the benefits

Connecting smart home devices of different brands is often – unfortunately – without problems. For example, you have to buy a special bridge for Hue lamps, while the Nest Thermostat works again via WiFi or Thread. Matter, formerly Project CHIP, is an open source standard designed to eliminate compatibility issues.

Smarthome Connection: A Big Mess

Those who are currently looking for smart home equipment will get lost in the labyrinth of loose connectivity standards for smart home equipment. Of course, you can connect devices to a local Wi-Fi network or by connecting them over short distances via Bluetooth, but in many cases this is not the path that smart equipment manufacturers prefer. Hue lights, for example, use the Zigbee equipment control protocol. In addition, you can purchase equipment for your smart home that supports the Z-Wave protocol, such as Fibaro switches.

These separate standards have an important drawback, because they do not communicate with each other. Z-Wave-enabled devices typically cannot handle Zigbee equipment, and this also applies to Wi-Fi or Bluetooth-enabled equipment. The disadvantage of this is that you have to control the equipment on a different platform for each standard, but you also have to purchase separate communication hubs for equipment with Zigbee or Z-Wave support. Will your dream smart home get lights from Hue and Fibaro switches? Then you need separate hubs and you can’t control the lights directly via one app, you first have to connect them to a platform that can power all the equipment, like Google Home.

However, you have a problem there, because Amazon or Apple smart home systems – speakers and smart displays – don’t support both protocols, for example, and in Apple’s case, HomePod doesn’t even support Zigbee or Z-Wave at all. Since Z-Wave and Zigbee devices are not connected to a WiFi network, smart home control is always running via the servers of the Zigbee hub or Z-Wave manufacturer. The drawback of this is that the support for these hubs, as can be seen with the first Hue Bridge from Philips, is not endless and that over time you will have to purchase a new bridge or hub to continue operating your equipment.

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The issue: the smart home standard

There are also exceptions, because the Nest Hub can, for example, handle various smart home standards. However, you want all devices and platforms to speak one language to make the process easier. That’s right Thing As standard, a project created by Zigbee Alliance in 2019 under the name Project CHIP (Connected Home over IP). With Matter, you can now ask Siri or Alexa to control devices from Google, for example. This should be possible without the user having to jump through various hoops.

Material is the new standard for smart home and these are the benefits
Products backed with the Matter logo always bear the Matter logo

Unlike Zigbee and Z-Wave, Matter does not operate on a specific network frequency. According to the CSA (Connectivity Standards Alliance), the network standard works with Bluetooth, WiFi, Ethernet, and over the Thread protocol that many Google products support. In addition, Matter will work across platforms such as HomeKit, Alexa, Google Assistant, and SmartThings.

Update plans from Google and Signify

The platform is widely supported by smart equipment manufacturers, including Amazon, Apple, Google, IKEA, Signify, and Tuya. A total of 180 companies participate in the standard. Google and Signify have already announced plans for the Matter protocol.

This is how all Hue lamps are Get important support Across the Hue Bridge, while Signify’s WiZ lamps miss an update of the material. WiZ lights that will be on store shelves from September 2021 will receive Matter support later. Google announced its devices with theme support, including Nest Speakers and Monitors, Nest Wifi and Nest Thermostat with the protocol.

Material is the new standard for smart home and these are the benefits

Devices that receive the update with Matter support can act as a bridge to all Matter devices in the home – this applies to the Google Nest Hub 2, for example – while Matter devices such as the Nest Thermostat or Philips Hue are now easier to operate. Close in article networks. This effectively eliminates the need for separate hubs or bridges for such equipment. Here is a list of all manufacturers launching products in 2021 that work with the Matter protocol:

  • Amazon (Alexa)
  • Comcast
  • Esperrif systems
  • Eve systems
  • Google (oa Nest)
  • Grundfos Holdings A/S.
  • Huawei
  • Infineon Technologies
  • to study
  • Legrand
  • Nanoleaf (including smart bulbs)
  • Nordic Semiconductor
  • NXP Semiconductor
  • qorvo
  • Residency
  • hits
  • Schneider Electric
  • Signify (oa Philips Hue en WiZ)
  • silicon modulus
  • SmartThings
  • Somfy (including security systems)
  • STMicroelectronics
  • Texas Instruments
  • Tuya Smart (including smart lights and cameras)
  • Ubisys
  • and lian
  • Zumtobel Group مجموعة
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New devices with material

Ultimately, Matter should replace Zigbee and Z-Wave and it will be easier to bring smart home and operate smart equipment in a safe manner. However, at the moment, it has not yet been reached. The Connectivity Standards Alliance released the standard in May and expects the first Matter devices to be certified by the end of 2021 before they can be found in stores. By then, the first software updates should also be rolling out to devices that receive Matter support via an OTA update.

It is not known if Matter will eventually be able to solve smart home problems for Wi-Fi equipment that is no longer supported by the manufacturer after a few years. However, it is a step in the right direction, with an open protocol that makes it easier for equipment to communicate with each other – the future of smart homes looks much brighter, and above all more user-friendly.

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Winton Frazier

 "Amateur web lover. Incurable travel nerd. Beer evangelist. Thinker. Internet expert. Explorer. Gamer."

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