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Samsung announces Google partnership to make smart homes Matter

The collaboration will make it easier for SmartThings and Google Home users to easily add Matter-enabled devices on their Samsung Galaxy phones or tablets, as well as control them from both apps.
Written by Maria Diaz, Staff Writer
Samsung, Matter, and Google logos next to each other.
Samsung - Matter - Google | Maria Diaz/ZDNET

The Internet of Things is learning to work together: Amazon reiterated support for the Matter connectivity standard in its Devices and Services event Sept. 28 and Samsung today announced an expanded partnership with Google to let Samsung Galaxy phone and tablet users connect Matter-compatible devices to both SmartThings and Google Home systems. 

This isn't your parents' IoT. Heck, this isn't even the IoT you know. Smart home systems have hit wall after wall in interoperability since their inception. Having a smart home used to mean paying thousands of dollars for someone to professionally install devices around your house and then leave you paying a monthly subscription to actually use them. 

Until consumers took control. Now, you can have one brand of smart bulbs and different brands of smart plugs and security cameras -- all installed and controlled by you from your smartphone. The downside, though, is that you end up with one app for each brand of devices on your mobile device, making you have to sift through the apps to find the right one to control each device.

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This takes time, it's tedious, and it also means that you often can't get these devices to work together for automations, for example. Matter's multiadmin capability is changing that, and Samsung and Google are making it more convenient for you. They're making a commitment to consumers that they'll be able to control devices from different ecosystems easily through both the SmartThings and Google Home apps, as well as go from one app to the other and have their devices ready for them, no matter which app they choose to use in the moment.

"With the launch of Matter, we understand there will be new expectations when it comes to smart home connectivity," said Matthew McCullough, vice president of Product Management, Android Developer for Google. "We are proud to partner with Samsung Electronics to offer new and existing smart home users their first glimpse into what the future of the smart home looks like, and the ease of use that comes with it."

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Samsung and Google are using Matter to let users find, connect, and control Matter-enabled devices natively through the SmartThings or Google Home apps on Android. No more going through your phone across multiple apps and accounts to find and control a device.  

"Both SmartThings and Google are committed to user choice and giving consumers the power to control their own devices. This collaboration furthers that commitment by enhancing the user experience and promoting transparency between ecosystems," said Jaeyeon Jung, Samsung Electronics vice president and head of SmartThings.

To get started, users will be able to go to their SmartThings apps, be advised of any Matter-compatible devices that have been set up via Google Home, and be given the choice to onboard these devices to SmartThings and vice versa. Easy discovery of Matter devices means consumers won't have to add each one at a time -- rather the app will discover them quickly and seamlessly. 

Matter integration is ongoing, and Samsung and Google's multiadmin feature will be rolled out in the next few weeks. 

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