The former Zigbee Alliance(now known as the Connectivity Standards Alliance) admitted the delay in launching its Smart home technology standard, Matter. It was once known as Project CHIP and unveiled in May, holds the potential of a universal standard for everything ‘smart’ from connected lighting systems to smart locks, cameras, and more.
A major part of the appeal is the consumer-friendly approach, that Matter aims to be. A sizable hurdle for any smart home is gauging which devices will seamlessly work together. The Matter badge on products is a commitment towards the inter-compatibility of the device/appliance.
“The Matter mark will serve as a seal of approval,” the CSA explained earlier in the year, “taking the guesswork out of the purchasing process and allowing businesses and consumers alike to choose from a wider array of brands to create secure and connected homes and buildings.” It aims at spanning more than one connectivity type, including ethernet, Wi-Fi, Thread, and Bluetooth Low Energy. A “pre-ballot” version of the technical spec for Matter should be ready in the second half of this year. “In the first half of 2022,” Tobin Richardson, President and CEO of the CSA, adds, “We expect to see the SDK released, the first devices through certification, and our formal certification program opening.”
Consumers will have to wait until next year for actual products that support Matter. Amidst the lack of clarity and compatibility surrounding smart technology and IoT devices, the slow and steady approach is a sensible strategy by the CSA. As Richardson puts it, Matter needs to “meet market expectations for quality and interoperability” .