A Matter of Recognizing Smart Home Potential

Faster broadband throughout the home has changed how residents use and interact with services outside the home. The smart home combines these aspects to do the same for the home and its residents by leveraging connectivity to automatically act and react to real-time changes in the home—leading to maximized comfort, efficiency, and convenience.

A Decade of Lost Potential

Somewhat surprisingly, the smart home market has struggled to win broadscale home system acceptance. The industry has remained largely proprietary, and a prolonged market share battle among vendors has led to confusion with consumers, who are unwillingly steered toward competing hardware and ecosystems that provide limited interoperability.

Smart home still has wide potential and value, however. The promise of greater connectivity in the home doesn’t just benefit residents; it also can deliver systematic change to the way homes consume and produce key resources, deliver goods and services, and integrate with the global economy.

The Matter specification is poised to be a foundation for those capabilities.

Matter Has Entered the Chat

Despite being months from completion and launch, the Matter specification is already driving new products and strategies across the smart home market. With a host of major players, technology suppliers, and partners already pledged to delivering Matter compliant offerings, the specification will dominate the smart home landscape within five years. CES 2022 featured key Matter product announcements from Amazon, Apple, Google, and Samsung; as well as key component and service providers ranging from NXP to Tuya.

This year more than one hundred million devices will ship supporting the specification and within five years more than half of the world’s key smart home devices will ship supporting Matter. Between 2022 and the end of the decade, more than 5.5 billion Matter compliant smart home devices will ship.

Even so, the specification will trigger a host of new demands across connectivity, interoperability, security, and marketing—some underway and others still in development. Smart home hardware vendors will be challenged to accurately assess the value and investment that Matter compliance requires, as well as the strategic impact on their roadmaps and their place in the market.

A Lasting Impact on Smart Home

Matter will significantly change the way consumers adopt and use their smart home purchases, driving smart home platforms capabilities to onboard and manage smart home devices, dispensing with a generation of device vendor apps.

The Matter specification will provide new incentives for players throughout the smart home value chain. It will also bring additional competition with new market players. Beyond the immediate impact on smart home devices and consumers, the specification will enable greater engagement in smart home from consumers and across a variety of industries. Other key points to consider: 

Matter changes the landscape for smart home connectivity. The smart home will be an IPv6-dominated space because of Matter.

The wireless protocols supported in Matter—Wi-Fi, Thread, and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE)—will all benefit from inclusion in the specification.

A new wave of smart home product support will push into and across smart home consumer devices, appliances, and other products.

Multi-admin platform support in Matter will push smart home platform providers to compete on platform capabilities, user-friendliness, reliability, onboarding, etc., rather than the strength and reach of their closed ecosystem.

New partnerships will emerge as smart home players develop new functionality and strategies to best compete in a Matter-compliant market.

Standardized in-home device connectivity will force greater device competition on features and services, as well as changing customer engagement/relationships with device providers.

Simplified in-home connectivity will drive smart home system adoption over siloed single device or single vendor deployments.

These findings are from ABI Research’s Matter and its Smart Home Impact application analysis report. This report is part of the company’s Smart Home research service, which includes research, data, and ABI InsightsBased on extensive primary interviews, Application Analysis reports present in-depth analysis on key market trends and factors for a specific technology.