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Upgraded Matter Casting takes on AirPlay and Chromecast

09 May 2024 | Rasmus Larsen |

Matter, the new smart home connectivity standard from Amazon, Apple, Google and Samsung, has reached version 1.3, which is a significant update.

Matter aims to achieve interoperability across ecosystems, products, and brands by using Ethernet, WiFi and Thread protocols. While Matter works existing smart home platforms such as Apple HomeKit, Google Home and Amazon Alexa, the rollout has been slower than anticipated.

After Matter 1.2 added support for additional device types, Matter 1.3 further expands its capabilities to include energy management, EV charging, a range of kitchen appliances, and more.


Matter TV control

Matter can control TVs, speakers, lights, cameras and many other IoT devices

At the time of writing, Matter 1.2 and 1.3 have not yet been implemented in major smart home platforms. However, with Apple's WWDC 2024 and Google's I/O 2024 developer conferences just weeks away, we should soon receive an update on the... matter.

Upgraded Matter Casting

Matter also introduces an optional casting feature to compete with AirPlay 2 and Chromecast, letting you wirelessly share media content from a phone or tablet onto the TV. Currently, Matter Casting is only supported by Amazon in FireTV. Panasonic will be one of the first TV brands to adopt it. Matter Casting receives significant upgrades with Matter 1.3: - "Matter Casting Media Players / TVs: Matter 1.3 offers improvements to TV functionality, including push messages and dialog support for new ambient experiences, casting initialization enhancements, expanded interactivity options for TV apps, text and track support, and improved search functionality. Interaction with other devices in the home is also enhanced, enabling other Matter devices to send notifications to TVs or other devices with screens (for instance, notifying that a robot vacuum is stuck, the laundry is done, etc.)," announced CSA, the organization behind Matter According to comments made to The Verge by Chris DeCenzo, responsible for Amazon's Matter casting implementation: - "Other new features coming to Matter casting with 1.3 include the option for apps to have multiple clients connected to them at once and offer a different experience for each one. According to DeCenzo, this could allow developers to enable new experiences, such as multiplayer gaming with smartphones," wrote The Verge. The next step is to get developers to take advantage of these new possibilities. We will have to wait and see what it amounts to.

Matter 1.3 – what's new

New Support for Water and Energy Management Devices - Energy Management — To help users understand and manage their energy use, save money, and reduce their carbon footprint, Matter 1.3 introduces new energy reporting capabilities. This enables any device type to include the ability to report actual and estimated measurements, including instantaneous power, voltage, current, and others, in real-time, as well as its energy consumption or generation over time. - Electric Vehicle Charging — Matter 1.3’s energy features also enable new energy-centric devices, the first of which is Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE). This enables EV charging equipment manufacturers to present a consumer-friendly way to control how and when they charge their vehicles. It features the ability to manually start or stop charging, adjust the charging rate, or specify how many miles of range to be added by a set departure time, leaving the charging station to automatically optimize the charging to happen at the cheapest and lowest carbon times. - Water Management — Support for leak and freeze detectors, rain sensors, and controllable water valves provide homeowners with enhanced monitoring, management, and protection over water in and around their homes. New Major Appliance Types With Matter 1.3, we are adding support for more appliances, encompassing a range of major household devices essential to everyday living. Among the newly supported device types: - Microwave Ovens — Users can control the cooking time, power level, and mode of operation and receive notifications, such as “end of cycle” or “food ready” when the microwave completes operation. For a microwave installed in an “over-the-range” configuration, the specification also supports control of an extractor fan and light typical in such scenarios. - Ovens — Configurations including built-in, stand-alone, or as part of a range with an associated cooktop are included in the Matter 1.3 update. Each oven compartment can be individually controlled from an operational mode (standard, convection bake, roast, steam, broil/grill, proofing) and temperature-setting perspective with information related to the state of the oven (i.e., preheating or cooling). Notifications such as preheating and target temperature achieved are supported. - Cooktops — With Matter 1.3, there is support for cooktops, allowing for remote access and control (typically induction-based devices). The cooktop’s individual elements allow for temperature control and measurement (where regulation allows). - Extractor Hoods (Cooker Hoods, Vent Hoods) — Matter 1.3 supports cooktops and ranges in conjunction with cooktop hoods. It allows for the control of both the light and fan settings in such devices, as well as the status/end-of-life of any filter material used (e.g., HEPA filters). - Laundry Dryers — With Matter 1.2 including support for laundry washers, Matter 1.3 completes the pairing with the addition of support for laundry dryers. Users can set the dryer mode and target temperature and, depending on local safety regulations, remotely start and stop the dryer. Notifications like “end of cycle” and alarms on error states (as vendor-specified) are supported. Enhanced Entertainment and Smart Home Management Functionality for Media Devices - Matter Casting Media Players / TVs — Matter 1.3 offers improvements to TV functionality, including push messages and dialog support for new ambient experiences, casting initialization enhancements, expanded interactivity options for TV apps, text and track support, and improved search functionality. Interaction with other devices in the home is also enhanced, enabling other Matter devices to send notifications to TVs or other devices with screens (for instance, notifying that a robot vacuum is stuck, the laundry is done, etc.)
FlatpanelsHD
- Source: CSA, The Verge

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