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Eve’s sensors and smart plugs will be among the first Matter-compatible devices

Eve’s sensors and smart plugs will be among the first Matter-compatible devices

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A firmware upgrade on December 12th will bring Matter to the Eve Motion, Eve Door & Window, and Eve Energy. Other products will be updated over the next year, and Eve’s Android app is coming in early 2023.

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The latest generation of the Eve Motion is gaining Matter support next month.

Thanks to its forward planning and early adoption of Thread, smart home device maker Eve System will be among the first companies with Matter devices. It’s making a free update available to its Thread-enabled Eve Energy smart plug, Eve Door & Window sensors, and Eve Motion sensor on December 12th to support Matter. The company announced this at a Matter launch event in Amsterdam and confirmed that the rest of its Thread lineup will receive the updates over the next year. Additionally, Eve products with Matter already built in will start shipping in Q1 of 2023.

Also coming in the first half of 2023 is the company’s first-ever Android app. This will mean those with Android phones can add and control Eve devices in their smart home. Until the Eve app arrives, Android users can control Eve devices that work with Matter, but an iOS device will be needed to first onboard products to a Matter-compatible app, such as Google Home.

The upgrade to existing products will be optional because, once you update your Eve device to Matter, it cannot go back, Jerome Gackel, CEO of Eve Systems, told The Verge in an interview. Fortunately, the issue of potentially losing device functionality by upgrading to Matter has been resolved. Gackel says, in iOS 16.1, Apple added the ability to include custom device functions in Matter, allowing the Eve Energy smart plug’s energy monitoring feature to come with it into Matter. (Eve had previously said the energy monitoring feature wouldn’t be accessible when the plug was updated to Matter.)

What is Matter?

Matter is a new smart home interoperability standard that provides a common language for smart home devices to communicate locally in your home without relying on a cloud connection. It uses Wi-Fi and Thread wireless protocols and, at launch, will include smart sensors, smart lighting, smart plugs and switches, smart thermostats, connected locks, and media devices including TVs. 

All this means that if a smart home device you buy has the Matter logo on it, you should be able to set it up and use it with any Matter-compatible device and in any Matter-compatible platform. Matter-compatible devices should start to become available toward the end of this year.

Amazon Alexa, Google Home, Samsung SmartThings, and Apple Home are some of the big smart home platforms signed on to support Matter, and we expect to see updates arriving on these platforms over the coming months.

With support for Matter, these devices — which traditionally have only worked with iPhones due to Eve’s stringent stance on privacy and decision not to use a cloud — will soon be controllable on any Matter-enabled platform or voice assistant.

The Matter upgraded Eve devices do require a Thread border router in your home, which Gackel acknowledges may be a roadblock for some. “I believe in three years from now, every home will have a Wi-Fi network and a border router,” he says. “But it is a problem today.”

Unlike Nanoleaf’s newly announced Thread products, Eve’s devices will only work on Thread, not over Bluetooth as well. (Bluetooth will only be used for commissioning.) So, if you don’t have a border router, they just won’t work.

Apple, Eero, Samsung SmartThings, and Nanoleaf all have Thread border router products available, and Amazon and Google have announced they will upgrade some of their smart speakers to be border routers soon. Gackel says they have tested their devices on all four platforms, and they work “seamlessly,” as the company demoed at IFA earlier this year.