Google has announced native Android support for the new, unified smart home platform Matter via Google Play services. The company also announced new tools and features for developers to create Matter devices. Google Home will be the new name for its entire smart home platform, including developer tools and programs. The announcements came at the Google Smart Home Developer Summit on Thursday.
For the uninitiated, Matter is a new, open-sourced platform that will serve as the universal language for smart home devices. Meaning, interoperability between devices of any make, as well as standardized voice assistant support. All future Matter-compliant devices will feature the Matter logo, making it easier for users to distinguish whether a device will work in their connected home.
This ambitious project has received backing from some of the biggest names in the industry, including Google, Amazon, Apple, Samsung, Philips Hue, Nanoleaf, and more. Google first committed to upgrading all its existing smart home devices to support Matter at Google I/O in May. It also promised to enable devices like Nest Wi-Fi and Nest Hub Max to double as connection hubs for the new standard.
Google announces native support for Matter on Android
The Matter protocol is expected to go live next year. Ahead of that, Google has announced that all Matter devices will have native support on Android. “We’re building Matter directly into Android,” the company said. It didn’t reveal what Android OS versions will get support, but this still means wide compatibility on phones.
Google is touting fast and easy connections, just like connecting a pair of headphones over Fast Pair. Your Android device will automatically detect a new Matter device and let you quickly connect to it with just a few taps. Users will be able to decide whether they want to use the Google Home app, the built-in Android controls for smart home devices, or other third-party Matter apps to control their device.
For developers, Google will provide a Google Home Device SDK (software development kit) to build Matter-compliant devices and integrate with Google Assistant. The company will also provide a Google Home Mobile SDK for building companion Android apps. Moreover, there will be a Google Home IDE (integrated development environment) as well. It will give developers access to Google Assistant Simulator, Cloud Logging, and other tools to help with the development process.
Google says it will share more details about its commitment to the Matter protocol in the coming months. You can expect more companies to announce support for the new smart home standard before it launches next year.