Home & Office
Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


Matter is coming fall 2022 (fingers crossed), but why does that matter to you?

Once the new smart home connectivity standard launches, a formal certification program will be open to all companies that want to sell Matter devices.
Written by Maria Diaz, Staff Writer
Reviewed by Kelsey Adams
Interior of a modern house with smart automation system mounted on the wall
imaginima/Getty Images

Matter has undoubtedly gotten a lot of attention in the Internet of Things arena since its announcement in late 2019. The Connectivity Standards Alliance is looking to make Matter the new connectivity standard for smart homes.

Matter logo

Since smart devices and hubs started appearing on the market, the lack of compatibility among brands and devices has been a big problem. Right now, you have to choose your home automation systems carefully or you might not find enough compatible devices, and you may have to juggle multiple apps to control your home.

The CSA aims to change that by developing Matter. A standard could diminish interoperability woes and erase the need for the tinkering involved in connecting incompatible devices to an automation system. 

Also: The 4 best smart home hubs

Matter is a new open-source IP-based connectivity standard for smart home technology. It was announced as a joint project called CHIP (Connected Home over Internet Protocol) by the Zigbee Alliance, made up of Apple, Google, Amazon, and many other companies. It will run on Wi-Fi and Thread network layers and use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) for commissioning.

Matter should let you add a Blink camera natively into your Apple HomeKit ecosystem, for example, with extensive support across technologies and manufacturers. 

So instead of devices having a list of all the supported home assistants they can work with, many will simply come with a Matter logo.

Apple's Corey Wang, a producer in Human Interface Design, mentioned Matter during Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC 2022), pointing out the need to have more compatibility across brands in smart home devices for a truly connected home. Google said its smart hubs that currently have Thread built in will double as Matter hubs, adopting the technology when it's available. Amazon announced in 2021 that almost all Echo devices will support Matter.

At the end of the day, Matter should simplify the smart home business for both manufacturers and consumers. It would be pretty sweet to not have to worry about which brand works with which or which devices support what assistant when choosing a video doorbell or a security camera, and just choose the brands you like.

Also: The 5 best smart speakers

The big question is when Matter will become available. The new standard in smart home connectivity was supposed to launch before the end of 2021. We're past the halfway mark of 2022 and still discussing smart home bridges. But the CSA has committed to a launch in fall of this year.

Editorial standards