Smart home device makers have all agreed to a new standard called Matter that will make all your devices work well together, and Google is currently working to get developers to agree to that vision. The company has also rebranded its smart home ecosystem as Google Home, which will integrate everything from smart speakers and displays to Android and Nest security devices.
The search giant announced it will update its Nest devices to support Google I/O's new smart home standard. But Google will need developers if buyers want to make the most of these devices once Matter is released.
The matter was born out of Project Connect Home over IP, or CHiP.Google was one of its initial backers, though Apple, Amazon, and others are also working on it. Matter combines Ethernet, wifi, Bluetooth LE, and Thread, a low-power mesh networking technology that has been used in Google's smart home products for years.
Starting next year, developers will have access to the Google Home Developer Center, which provides all the SDKs and plug-ins necessary to make smart home devices work better with Matter and the rest of the Google Home ecosystem. It will feature programmable Google Home actions, including custom prompts for devices within the app, so new users will better know where to start. Google will also include toolkits for creating automation and routines, as well as the ability to customize routine suggestions.
The Google Home Device SDK will enable smart home device makers to not only adopt Matter but also seamlessly integrate into the Google Home ecosystem with simple Settings and Google Assistant integration. Everything will work together, maybe. More importantly for Google, everything will work with Google Home.
To further ensure adoption of the Matter standard, Google also announced that it will support the protocol through Google Play Services, building Matter directly into Android. This will make it easier for you to connect new material devices via wifi and threads. Later next year, you might also see more controls in Android's reconfigured device shortcuts, which moved from the Power menu to Quick Settings in Android 12.
While these announcements won't immediately affect your smart home, they can give us a glimpse of what the industry is doing behind the scenes to ensure that the arrival of Matter in 2022 makes things simpler, not more complicated.
If you're still wondering where Google should put your smart home, the search giant launched a large database of gadgets to help you find your device earlier this year. In the end, all this seamless integration with Matter will ensure that your Google Home remains Google Home.