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Matter devices use Wi-Fi, Ethernet and Thread (an IP- and mesh-based protocol similar to Zigbee). So, while your smart home won’t have direct Internet access, it will be able to communicate with each other, with the outside world and with cloud-based services like music streaming or voice assistants, as needed.
Most existing devices can be upgraded to Matter with a firmware update. But, some products will require hardware changes to support the new standard — for example, Yale’s smart locks use swappable modules and Eve’s smart plugs feature Thread radios. These upgrades may be available as standalone devices or through a smart hub.
All of the major smart home companies are making some or all of their devices Matter compatible. CES 2024 was awash in smart light bulbs, smart locks and other accessories with Matter compatibility from the likes of Philips Hue, Sengled and Nanoleaf. And, the big players — Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Samsung SmartThings — are working on bringing their existing smart speakers and displays to Matter compatibility.
You’ll still need a Matter controller to onboard your smart home, manage communications and control devices. That’s because Matter doesn’t offer advanced features like dynamic lighting effects, shared access codes for locks and energy management for smart plugs. That’s the responsibility of the smart home platform you choose. matter residences