Important: all about the link standard that joins linked objects

Home automation is gaining more and more space in our homes, which are increasingly equipped with connected objects to facilitate home control and save energy. However, due to compatibility issues between the different ecosystems and protocols used, it is not always easy to build the smartest and most functional connected home system possible. Consumers have been aware of this for a long time, and manufacturers of connected objects are finally tackling this challenge. To do this, they draw a new weapon: To be importantIt is a connection standard whose purpose is to allow connected terminals to communicate with each other and be controlled via a single interface.

What’s the issue?

Matter is a new standard designed for home automation. Simplify installation and configuration of connected devices. It is also used to ensure that they are supported, interoperable, and work properly with a variety of voice assistants in a wide variety of software and hardware environments. Therefore, building a smart home using products from different manufacturers and products from different ecosystems will be much less painful than it is now.

To sum it up, Matter will help all connected devices communicate with each other effectively and help democratize home automation among consumers who are still reluctant due to all its disadvantages before Matter arrives. “By collaborating, being inclusive, and with a deep sense of responsibility to market and consumers, Matter has the power to create a smart home that is more connected, secure and convenient.”Summarizes Tobin Richardson, president of the organization responsible for developing and managing Matter.

To be important

Who develops Matter?

At the end of 2019, a working group was formed to establish the project. Connected Home over IP (CHIP). Big names in technology and IoT have joined the ZigBee Alliance, the organization behind the protocol of the same name: Amazon, Apple, Google and Samsung. In 2021, the project becomes concrete with the creation of the project. Connection Standards Association (CSA)A consortium that brings together members of the CHIP project and new players who contribute to the creation and adoption of the new standard.

Today, CSA’s Board of Directors consists of executives from Amazon, Apple, ASSA ABLOY, Comcast, Google, Haier, Huawei, IKEA, Infineon Technologies AG, The Kroger Co., Latch Systems, LEEDARSON, Legrand, LG Electronics, Lutron Electronics. , Midea, Nordic Semiconductor, NXP Semiconductors, OPPO, Resideo Technologies, Samsung Electronics, Schneider Electric, Signify (Philips Hue and WiZ), Silicon Labs, Somfy, STMicroelectronics, Texas Instruments, Tuya and Wulian.

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Is Matter already available?

The release of Matter 1.0 version took place on September 30, 2022, but the official start of the protocol was launched on September 30, 2022. November 3, 2022. From this date, manufacturers may offer Substance in products marketed to the public. The good news is that remote firmware update deployment is possible on an existing fleet of devices, so it’s not just new terminals that benefit.

For example, Samsung was one of the first manufacturers to make Matter available in this way in the SmartThings ecosystem, making it possible to control their compatible devices from a single app rather than a set of apps. Amazon has announced that some of its Echo-connected speakers will migrate to Matter before the end of 2022. Some eero network equipment will also benefit from this. Nanoleaf also plans to rapidly adopt the protocol for early lighting solutions. To date, around 200 products are already certified or in testing for certification.

To be important

According to the CSA, Two major updates to the standard are planned each yearmakes it possible to add functionality, increase security, and integrate new product types into the protocol. The matter will not impose itself immediately, but it should democratize in a few years if the technology lives up to all its promises. Some dedicated e-commerce sites have even started adding a Topic category with the possibility of filtering only compatible products.

The next big event for next-gen protocol is CES 2023, the world’s largest tech expo, taking place in Las Vegas from January 5-8.

Which devices are Matter compatible?

Not all connected objects on the market are supported by Matter 1.0. The following objects are supported in this release: anchored hyperlinks

  • products equipped with speakers and personal assistant
  • connected sockets
  • smart bulbs (and other lighting devices)
  • linked locks
  • blinds and shutters
  • thermostats (and other heating and temperature management systems)
  • security presence sensors are supported.

For other types of devices, we will have to wait for future protocol enhancements. CSA has already announced plans to make the following devices compatible:

  • security cameras
  • robot vacuum cleaners
  • home appliances
  • network hardware (routers, repeaters, network solutions)
  • systems for opening and closing doors and gates
  • smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • environmental measurement sensors
  • motion detectors.

How does the item work?

works with matter 2.4 GHz frequency bandIt is by far the most used by bound objects. The protocol is based solely on:IPv6automatically excludes devices that only support IPv4. To associate a compatible device with the network, Matter uses the Bluetooth Low Energy standard. Communication between the relevant device and the others takes place through technology. Thread, which shares many commonalities and offers similar performance to Zigbee. Thread’s main advantage is that it doesn’t require a hub or bridge to operate, which has been detrimental to Zigbee’s development. Another advantage of Thread is that it creates a mesh network of compatible devices, each of which is used as a gateway to extend coverage. WiFi and Ethernet connections can also be powered by Matter, but Thread consumes less power than WiFi.

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To be important

What does the Multi-Admin feature do?

It’s Matter’s Multi-Admin that lets you control your connected objects from a different app than the one provided by the device manufacturer. And if companies collaborate with each other, it’s even possible to offer a completely transparent experience with the ability to access all the features available from a third-party interface. Google and SamsungCurrently collaborating on Tensor chips for Pixels and combining Wear OS with Tizen in smartwatches, Matter announced that they are working together to build bridges between SmartThings and Google Home using Matter’s Multi-Admin.

What features does Matter support?

Matter reappears in its first version limited functionality. Depending on the product, certain advanced options or routines may not be available at this time. The protocol will become more complete with updates. With Matter it is especially possible to turn a device on or off or activate its basic function. The standard for a more advanced experience is not yet ready.

How do I set up a device with Matter?

As with Zigbee, speed and simplicity are the keywords. A QR Code to be read on the product with a smartphone or a code to be entered identifies the device to be configured, then establishes the Bluetooth LE connection. The manufacturer’s app is no longer mandatory, add Smart Life, Smart Things, Alexa, Google Home, etc. to the configuration. possible to proceed from a compatible third-party application.

In the future, Matter may even use NFC to make the process even faster and easier. Better still, running a device that supports Matter in the future may be enough for it to be automatically detected by the network.

Is the substance safe?

Matter uses blockchain to confirm the origin and security of devices and grant them access to the network. Between devices in the home automation network or between devices and the cloud, communication encryption is provided by 128-bit AES technology. Matter also allows the exchange of data between devices from cloud to cloud and therefore does not deal with information security.

Does Matter work on iOS?

Apple is one of the contributors to the development of the standard and aims to align its products with Matter. But at the moment, Alexa and Google Home apps on iOS do not support the new standard: only Apple Home allows it.

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