With the rise of smart devices, the idea of a “smart home” has become incredibly popular.
The only problem is each device is in its own little silo created by the manufacturer, leaving homeowners with the possibility of having dozens of devices, all of which have to be controlled in different ways.
This is where the Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA) comes in.
CSA was formerly called Zigbee Alliance and helped establish a Wi-Fi protocol that could be used for smart devices, referred to as the “Internet of Things” or “IoT” devices.
This allowed the first round of devices, like lights, to be controlled via Amazon Echo, Google Home, or Apple Homekit.
However, the cost to license and certify Zigbee was high for many smaller vendors, leading the group to change its name to the Connectivity Standards Alliance and release an open-source version of the protocol called “Matter.”
CSA recently announced the release of Matter 1.2, which expands the protocol to include nine new types of devices, including refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines, robotic vacuums, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, air quality sensors, air purifiers, and fans.
This means that all of these devices can be controlled via a single smart home hub such as Amazon Echo.
With nearly 700 manufacturing companies already embracing the protocol, the idea of a smart home is becoming much, much closer to reality.
It isn’t just the single platform that is interesting with the expansion of devices, but the possibility of interactions between devices.
For instance, users can expect things like lights being programmed to blink when the washer finishes its cycle, or automatic actions like fans turning on if carbon monoxide detectors go off.