Smart home standard Matter delayed yet again to allow 'tweaking and tuning'

An illustration of a smart home control
Initially set for launch last year, new devices won't be available for at least six months. Photo credit: Getty Images

Matter, the smart home standard designed to unify various smart systems made by different brands, has been delayed yet again.

Initial plans were to launch the standard, formerly known as Project Connected Home over IP (CHIP), at the end of 2021; but that was delayed until the northern hemisphere summer of 2022.

With just months to go before that deadline, it's now been pushed out again, with autumn in the northern hemisphere now the target.

Matter was launched by the likes of Apple, Amazon and Google, all big players in the smart home market, with others like Ikea, Huawei and Nanoleaf all joining to ensure interoperability of devices.

The group, now known as the Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA), told website The Verge the delay was needed to finalise the software development kit (SDK) manufacturers will need to use to ensure it works in Matter's system.

Michelle Mindala-Freeman of the CSA told the site that features had been completed, work was needed on the SDK to "stabilise, tweak, tune and improve quality in the code".

Part of this is because of the larger than expected number of platforms who have decided to adopt Matter as a standard, she said.

"The long and short of [the delay] is scale, scope, and doing something that is absolutely one hundred percent a new thing that has never been done before," Mindala-Freeman told The Verge.

"It takes time."

In a blog post on its website, the CSA said it knew a change in schedule, even a small one, could be disruptive or disappointing to those waiting for Matter's launch.

"We also know our Alliance members are all-in, the finish line is in sight, and we are reaching milestones with confidence, quality, and massive support," it said.

"The biggest brands in the world continue to invest countless hours in Matter, alongside their colleagues from more than 240 member companies. We couldn’t be more excited, and more determined than ever.

"For the ability to tear down the walled gardens in Internet of Things (IoT), accelerate growth, and improve experiences for customers and consumers, we’re certain a couple extra months will be worth the wait."

Smart home devices include speakers, light bulbs, televisions and weather stations, and safety and security devices such as indoor and outdoor webcams.

One standard should, ultimately, give the consumer more control over their devices. They won't be tied to a single brand and all should be able to be controlled from a single app on their phone or tablet of choice.

The delay in launching the standard means compatible devices will not be available for at least another six months at the earliest.