Eve is adopting Matter and Thread for a broad collection of its smart home devices, unveiling a new collection and technology update at IFA 2022 in Berlin.
Matter, a new smart home connectivity standard supported by all the major companies – Apple, Samsung, Amazon and Google – aims to ease connectivity and interoperability issues between disparate devices.
The idea is that when you go shopping for a new smart light switch, camera, or doorbell, you don’t have to check that they all, say, work with Apple’s Home Kit or Amazon’s Alexa, and instead turn to support. Matter.
Until now, however, products that support Matter and its mesh communication backbone, Thread, have been in short supply. If Eve is any measure, though, that’s about to change.
The company has announced and is demonstrating a collection of new and updated products that will initially support Thread, which replaces Bluetooth interconnectivity with a Wi-Fi-based network. The Apple-enabled Eve line, which includes Eve light strips, is expected to receive a firmware update this year that will bring support for platforms from Amazon, Google and Samsung.
Matter, however, will also have the chance to flex its interoperability muscles on a new Eve product line that includes the new Eve MotionBlinds built in partnership with Coulisse. The blinds will be, according to Eve, the first smart blinds to support Thread, and later, Matter.
MotionBlinds will come in HoneyComb and Roller styles. The first will only be available in Europe and the Rollers will be sold globally. As these systems are sold through resellers, pricing was not available.
They will work with a new Eve Shutter Switch that will also add smart functionality to existing motorized window covers. The switch arrives in December for €99.95 (about $100 / £86 / AU$146) and will be sold by Eve and Amazon in Germany, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
Eve’s 3rd Gen Lightswitch, which can add smart functionality to any light, is also getting the Thread and later Matter update. As a Thread-based device, the switch can also act as a router node for other Matter devices. It will be available in North America from October for $49.95 (about £43 / AU$73).
Eve is also releasing a white edition of its existing Eve Outdoor Cam ($249.95 / around £216 / AU$366), which also supports thread and, coming soon, Matter.
Apple fans will have a head start on all this Thread and Matter excitement. Eve started with exclusive support for Apple HomeKit and, with Matter, is only now adding support for other third-party platforms. As such, an Android Eve app is coming later this year.
Analysis: a matter of time
The Eve’s Matter announcement is likely just the beginning of a significant push for the new smart home standard. Eve appears to have gotten a head start on adoption by quickly building and upgrading existing devices to the crucial Thread network protocol. However, expect other smart home makers to quickly follow suit.
It’s rare for any technology to have such broad support from typical competitors like Apple, Google and Amazon, who often like to choose their own communication platforms or gravitate to less-adopted ones like Zigbee.
CES 2023 should be packed with products that support Thread and Matter, launching a smart home interoperability revolution like we’ve never seen.
The other benefit of Eve getting ahead of the game is that these products can be in public hands before the end of this year, which means consumers will be using them in real-world scenarios. It will be a crucial test for Matter. If all goes well, 2023 is likely to be the standout year for Matter-supporting devices from Apple, Google, Samsung, Amazon, and all their smart home device brand partners.
IFA 2022 is Europe’s biggest tech trade show, and is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and announcements, as well as our hands-on first impressions of the new TVs, wearables, audio devices and other gadgets on display.