Apple is a leading member of a new organization creating a standard for home automation devices. A primary goal is interoperability, allowing accessories to connect to HomeKit, Alexa, Google Home, etc.
Previously, it was up to the makers of smart home products to make devices that worked with more than one voice control system. Many chose to support just one.
That means that a smart bulb designed for Amazon Alexa couldn’t be controlled by Apple’s HomeKit. And vice versa. The new standard will change that.
New day for HomeKit and home automation
The new standard has been dubbed Matter. “Matter makes it easier for device manufacturers to build devices, and to ensure they are compatible with smart home and voice services such as Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s HomeKit with Siri, Google’s Assistant, SmartThings, and others,” says a statement from the Connectivity Standards Alliance.
It’s a development that’s been brewing since 2019 when Apple, Amazon, Comcast, Google and others agreed to create what was first dubbed Project Connected Home over IP (CHIP) and is now called Matter. The goal was devices from multiple brands that work natively together.
It’s an IP-based connectivity protocol and is available royalty-free. From the beginning, Matter will support Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Thread and Bluetooth Low Energy.
There are now 180 member organizations in the CSA. They’re expected to finish work on the standard and see the first compatible home automation devices through certification in late 2021.
Source: Connectivity Standards Alliance