Does anyone know if the Samsung branded appliances will be made available to other hubs via matter? I am talking about the standalone devices that do not connect to a ST hub (vacuums, ovens, washing machines, etc.). I recently saw some news about the new matter standard including a bunch of these and some companies like RoboRock are already planning to make their devices matter compatible via a firmware update. Samsung could fall behind quickly unless they follow suit.
This one is complicated, because matter is actually coordinating with a separate standard, which was in development for appliances. And Samsung is a founding member of that other standard, the Home Connectivity Alliance. They released the first version of their standard in August 2023.
Note that HCA’s goals are more modest than those of matter. For one thing, they are not requiring local integration, most of the smart appliances are currently communicating with a manufacturer cloud, and that will likely continue.
When you peel back the technical stuff, it looks somewhat similar to Ifttt. There will be predefined use cases, and “any app to any appliance“ will allow you to start with any of the members apps, and then add in appliances from the other members, but only for specific use cases.
The HCA Interface Specification 1.0 provides a framework for Cloud-to-Cloud (C2C)
interoperability and establishes a foundation of tangible benefits for consumers, starting with
legacy device integration and paving the way for energy savings in the future.
When HCA 1.0 interoperability enters the market, consumers will be able to control their smart
appliances, regardless of the manufacturer, through their existing appliance and HVAC apps.
No special hub is required, rather an update on a mobile app will enable most smart appliances
in the home, dependent on manufacturer rollout by product, geography and market.
So…l do think Samsung appliances will eventually show up in matter commissioning apps for those predefined functions, but I think everybody’s expectation is that these Device classes will continue to be cloud based. But it should mean they’ll show up in Apple home, for example, which would be cool. But I’m not expecting to see it before 2025 based on current announcements.
What we should see in 2024 is interoperability between a few of the major appliance manufacturers. Samsung and LG are already working on this. So my guess is that the primary benefit to SmartThings customers in 2024 will be for those who have LG appliances and want to bring them into the SmartThings app. Rather than the other way around. But we’ll see.
Oh, I should say that televisions and robot vacuums are an exception to this, because those device classes are included in matter itself. It’s the “white goods“ appliances: refrigerators, washing machines, dryers, etc. that are in the HCA but not in matter, most probably because of the local operation requirement.
This makes sense as most of the article was in regard to these two classes of appliances. I may have seen air purifiers in there as well. Not 100%
I found the original article again. It does mention refrigerators, dishwashers and washing machines for simple state triggers like cycle complete and temperature control. So if they add Matter 1.2 to their appliances (Matter over Wifi), then I think they should be available to other controllers.
As always, there are three sides to any matter decision
the connectivity standards alliance, the independent third-party developing the matter standard, decides what it’s going to include.
the individual voice assistant companies, decide what, if anything, in that standard they are going to implement and on what timeline. This is why Google assistant and Alexa, for example, might support different features of the same device connected over matter. Or not yet support an entire device class.
the individual device manufacturers decide what, if anything, in the standard, they are going to implement and on what timeline for each individual model.
So… sure, the CSA has now added washing machines (but not dryers) to the matter standard for a few specific use cases, such as a notification that the wash is done.
But so far, no voice assistants have signed up to support those.
And unlike smart bulbs and smart plugs, and even a few vacuum cleaner models, no individual device manufacturers have yet announced a plan to add matter compatibility to their washers. (But several of the big ones have announced that they will meet the HCA standard I mentioned in a previous post.)
We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.