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Have you heard of Matter? It's a new smart home specification that promises to make it easier to install, control and maintain your smart home devices, regardless of who made them. ZDNET's Maria Diaz wrote a great article explaining what Matter is and why it, forgive me, matters to you. It's worth a read if you're really frustrated with the current smart home experience and have been hoping for a solution.
Well, Matter is here. The Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA) held a launch event in Amsterdam to kick off the future of our always-on and always-connected smart home experience.
But the change isn't going to be instant. Matter is a standard, and all companies -- including tech giants like Apple, Amazon or Google -- have to go through various processes before they can release Matter firmware updates or Matter-enabled products. For example, each product needs to go through a certification process with the CSA. There is currently a certification process available for devices such as lights, thermostats, TVs, door locks and security sensors (to name a few).
With that in mind, companies are starting to announce their plans for Matter. Below you'll find a brief roundup of companies who've announced their plans. But it's not an exhaustive list. The CSA announced just this morning there are 300 members it expects to see integrate Matter.
Smart home device makers who've announced Matter plans
Again, I expect we'll see a flood of announcements about software updates to enable Matter support or new hardware that launches fully ready to go with Matter in the coming days and weeks.
But there are a handful of companies that are ready to announce plans today, including Eve, Nanoleaf, Amazon and even Samsung.
Eve, thus far, has only made smart home devices for Apple's HomeKit platform. Over the last year or so, the company has focused on releasing Thread-enabled smart home devices in preparation for the full Matter launch. Thread is a networking protocol designed for smart home devices that allows for quick and easy communication between multiple devices at the same time. Eve currently has 14 Thread devices in its lineup, all of which will receive an update to enable Matter support. On Dec. 12, Eve will release an optional software update for the Eve Energy, the Eve Door & Window and Eve Motion. Additionally, early next year, Eve will release an Android version of its app.
The bulbs and strips won't be available until early next year, and will range in price from $19.99 to $99.99 on Nanoleaf's website. Nanoleaf also expects to have more products ready for an announcement at CES 2023.
Apple hasn't made a huge deal about its Matter plans, but the latest software updates for the iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple Watch enabled Matter support for the HomeKit platform. The more expensive version of the new Apple TV, for instance, is equipped with a Thread radio and acts as a Thread border router.
Amazon will update 17 of its Echo and Eero devices with Matter over Wi-Fi to support plugs, switches and light bulbs in December. Matter over Thread support won't launch across Amazon's products until next year, which will then add the multi-ecosystem support Matter promises, by including support for Apple's HomeKit platform.