Matter and Zigbee

I have quite a few Zigbee devices. Smartthings, Philips Hue and also a Wiser system which has a thermostat that communicates with the boiler hub by Zigbee, This system is produced by Schneider

All three companies talk big about Matter and how they support it (but often referring to upcoming software releases)

The problem I have is that the thermostat wireless connection to the boiler is not good and will frequently be dropped meaning the heating goes off

So I am crossing my fingers hoping that this Matter revolution will enable the Wiser thermostat to make use of the existing Zigbee matrix wireless system to ensure good communication. But am I living in cloud cuckoo land?

Matter solves interoperability issues by adopting a common language, not wireless communication issues.

How devices communicate physically does not change. A bad WiFi is going to be a bad WiFi and a bad Zigbee link is going to be a bad Zigbee link.


As @mocelet mentioned, matter won’t fix any local network strength issues. That has to be handled within the specific protocol, in this case Zigbee.

Also, at the time of this posting, Zigbee devices don’t use matter themselves anyway. Some manufacturers of Zigbee devices, like Aqara and Philips Hue, offer a “matter bridge,” which then uses Wi-Fi to connect to the matter controller and bring in some of its connected Zigbee devices. But it’s up to each manufacturer, whether they offer a matter bridge or not.

See the following community FAQ for details on different kinds of matter integrations:

FAQ: What do I need to add a Matter device to the SmartThings app? Do I need a bridge router device?

But again, even if the manufacturer of your Zigbee devices does offer a matter bridge and you choose to use it, that won’t fix your Zigbee networking issues. You have to fix those first, and then you can layer matter on top of it.

Have you had a chance to look at the wireless range and repeater FAQ? It’s old, but still valid, and explains how to set up a strong mesh network. (It has been updated to include references to matter and thread.)

Start with post 11 in that topic (I will link directly to that post). Read it, then go up to the top of the thread and read the whole thing. That should answer most of your questions about how to improve network quality.

A Guide to Wireless Range & Repeaters - #11 by JDRoberts


Thanks for your thoughtful replies. My Smartthings Zigbee network works fine as does my Philips Hue Zigbee network. But in the case of my Wiser system, there are only two devices - the thermostat and the hub connected to the boiler. The connection between these two is not good and for all I know the other Zigbee devices could even be contributing to the poor communication.

But Wiser offer a plug-in repeater device. But I really object to having to buy another mains plug-in device just to do that when I have so many other Zigbee devices that in my mind ought to assist but apparently cannot. It seems to me like having a radio that can only receive BBC stations and needing to buy a different radio if you wanted to listen to commercial stations!

So it would seem that Matter is not going to be of help to me at all

Is your Wiser system a standalone system, not connected to your SmartThings Zigbee network? If so, nothing is going to improve its connections, except adding more Zigbee repeaters to its own network. It cannot communicate with the Zigbee devices on any other Zigbee networks nearby, and indeed, they might be causing interference with each other. It’s like having two radio stations too close together – – it can make it harder to hear either.

(matter doesn’t change anything in this regard. If we use the typical post office example, Zigbee Is the system of trucks delivering the letters. Matter is a set of checklist forms that go inside the envelopes. Matter makes it easier for the receiver to know what the sender wants done. But it doesn’t have anything to do with how quickly the trucks travel, or what routes they take.)

The most common reason for poor Zigbee communication is interference from strong Wi-Fi, because they use the same radio frequency. And Zigbee is much much weaker. So you would do the things that are described in the wireless range FAQ I previously linked to. Make sure the two hubs are physically separated by at least a couple of meters. Change channels on one or the other to try to get the signal separated a bit. And have enough Zigbee repeaters so that The Zigbee signal gets refreshed more often and doesn’t have to travel so far in a single hop.

You can also get interference between two Zigbee networks, but it’s actually fairly uncommon unless the hubs are right next to each other. Zigbee is designed for tiny messages sent infrequently. There’s not usually enough traffic to cause problems, but it can happen.

Good luck! After making sure your hubs are physically distant from each other, I would start by talking to Schneider support and see what suggestions they have. :thinking:

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Thankyou JDRoberts. I now know more than I did before I made the post and I’ll just have to see how I can make the best of it all

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