Apple and Amazon initiate new connection standards to allow smart home devices to “cross-service communication”

On May 11, US Eastern Time, the Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA), which includes major technology companies such as Apple, Amazon, and Google, announced the launch of a new connection standard “Matter”.

This is an interoperable and secure connection standard designed specifically for smart home devices, allowing users to control smart home devices through smart assistants of different brands and systems such as Apple Siri and Amazon Alexa.

CSA is the Zigbee alliance that originally created the Zigbee standard low-power local area network protocol. The alliance will pay more attention to projects such as Matter in the future. According to CSA, the first batch of equipment using Matter will be released at the end of 2021, which may include lighting electrical, HVAC controllers, access control and other equipment.

1. Smart home devices are compatible with different smart assistants

In December 2019, Apple, Google, and Amazon announced that they would collaborate to develop an open source smart home standard, which they named “CHIP (Project Connected Home over IP)”. This CHIP project is the predecessor of the Matter standard launched this time.

Matter is a unified connection protocol based on IP (Internet Protocol) to build and connect the IoT ecosystem. It is royalty-free and allows various smart devices to communicate with each other and work together.

The goal of the Matter standard is to provide a unified standard for smart home products, so that they are compatible with Amazon voice assistant Alexa, Apple voice assistant Siri, Apple smart home platform HomeKit, Google assistant Google Assistant and Samsung smart home platform SmartThings, etc., so that customers can Freely choose different brands of voice services or smart home platforms to control your smart home devices.

It is reported that the first specification version of the Matter protocol will run on the basis of existing network technologies, such as Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Thread, and Bluetooth low energy technology.

2. The new logo is printed on compatible devices, and it will be launched at the end of this year

After the name change, a new Matter logo will be added to hardware devices compatible with this standard, and users can easily distinguish which devices can work with other devices under the Matter standard.

Today, other large companies such as Philips Hue, a Dutch smart lighting equipment company, have also joined. The company promised to release a software update in the next few months. After the update, all its past and current products will be compatible with the Matter standard.

▲ Lighting equipment with the Matter logo

Currently, smart home equipment manufacturers are developing products such as light bulbs, plugs, sockets, thermostats, door locks, sensors, curtains, and TVs that are compatible with Matter.

Conclusion: Unified and open standards are the general trend

The Matter standard will improve the compatibility and convenience of smart home devices. If more companies are willing to adopt open standards like Matter, then smart home devices and smart home platforms can be better interconnected, and users will not have to be troubled by brand or system barriers.

In the future, more brands and players from more industries will join the smart home field, and the ecology of this field will become more and more diversified. Uniform and open standards will bring convenience to equipment manufacturers to a large extent, and at the same time create good news for consumers.

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