Android and Google Nest are getting support for Matter, a new universal smart home standard
Smart home devices have been a thing for a long time and we’ve seen them from many different companies, including from the likes of Apple, Amazon, Google, and Samsung. They’re meant to blend inside your home and enhance it with voice assistants, AI, or simply integrate with other devices in your household. But there hasn’t been an actual standard for them, making interoperability between these smart devices something of a mixed bag sometimes. Now, though, there is: it’s called Matter, and Google officially announced that both Android and Google Nest devices will be supporting it.
Matter, in case you’ve been out of the loop, is what we’ve previously known as Project CHIP, or Project Connected Home over IP, and it pretty much aims to serve as a universal standard for smart home devices. As we said before, there are plenty of smart home devices out there, meaning that interoperability is something users need to have in mind while getting new devices. With Matter, this might be a thing of the past: giants in the industry like Google, Amazon, Apple, and Samsung have worked together to make Matter a reality, which is excellent news when it comes to standardizing smart home devices.
Now, Google officially announced that both Android phones and Google Nest devices will be supporting Matter. Google says that Android will be one of the main operating systems with built-in support for this technology, allowing users to “quickly set up devices with Google and link your favorite Android apps.” Nest, on the other hand, is Google’s lineup of smart home appliances, and Thread, an in-house smart home technology Google co-founded in 2014, will work together with Matter in devices like the Nest Wifi, Nest Hub Max, and the second-generation Nest Hub, which will serve as connection points for Matter devices.
Google also announced several improvements to their smart home experience, including a new Google smart home directory, which will serve as an online destination to “discover Google Assistant-compatible devices” and products from more than 30 categories and several brands, as well as to “answer your questions and learn from educational videos.”
Nest devices are also getting support for WebRTC, an open-source video and audio streaming protocol that decreases latency between security cameras, video doorbells, smart displays, and mobile devices. They’re also throwing some automation to the mix: Google is improving Home & Away Routines. Nest cameras, Nest thermostats, smart lighting, smart plugs, and smart switches can all be automatically controlled to your liking depending on whether you’re at home or away.