Hey there, GM and friends! It’s great to be back with you all for this week’s smart home newsletter. A warm welcome to our 25 new subscribers – thank you for joining us and allowing us to share our insights with you. We appreciate your support!
We hope you’re all having a good weekend, and everything is running smoothly for you too. We’re excited to share that things have been steady and calm here at the O’Driscoll household 🙂 No major updates to report, but we’re always on the lookout for new and exciting developments in the world of smart homes. Here are some interesting smart home updates and insights from this past week:
Samsung Unveils SmartThings Station at CES 2023
Samsung Electronics recently announced SmartThings Station, an easy-to-use, affordable smart hub, and fast charging pad. With SmartThings Station, users can automate various aspects of their home environment by setting routines that add convenience to their day and reduce energy waste. This smart hub is easy to set up and helps various smart devices seamlessly connect with other smart devices connected to the smart home server.
Additionally, you can use this smart hub to activate multiple routines. Since the SmartThings Station is integrated with SmartThings Find, you can use the device to locate all your registered devices in your home. This hub also serves as a charging pad capable of supporting up to 15W wireless charging. The device will be available for purchase in U.S. and Korea starting February 2023.
Eve Makes Pivot from HomeKit to Matter
A longtime manufacturer of smart devices designed for Apple HomeKit, Eve is now betting big on the newly launched Matter universal smart home standard. The company plans to launch three Matter-compatible devices by the end of March, namely the Eve Door and Window entry sensor, the Eve Energy smart plug, and the Eve Motion.
The prices will be $40 for the Eve Energy and $50 for both Eve Door and Window entry sensor and the Eve Motion. Eve is also introducing a $200 retrofit kit for basic roller blinds named Eve MotionBlinds. Additionally, Eve is also working on bringing its older-gen smart devices into the Matter fold, with the exception of Eve Light Strip and Eve Flare.
Amazon Rolls Ring Car Camera
Amazon recently announced that they’d be launching the Ring Car Camera, a small two-way camera that will sit on the dashboard of your vehicle. The Ring Car Cam can capture the outside of your car from the dashboard as well as the inside of the cabin, whether the car is in motion or parked.
Much like the Ring home cameras, the Ring Car Cam can detect activities such as break-ins and start recording. You’ll then get an alert and live view from the camera via the Ring app. The camera also comes with a Traffic Stop feature that allows you to start recording if you’re pulled over or involved in a fender bender.
The camera is powered by your vehicle’s battery and supports cellular connection, but you have to subscribe to Ring’s Protect Go Service. The Ring Car Cam is equipped with a privacy shutter for your car’s interior that cuts off any video or audio. It also supports end-to-end encryption for all video recordings. The device is available for purchase through Amazon and Ring websites.
Amazon Announces Rollout Plans for Matter
Amazon is one of the founding members and important contributors to Matter, a smart home standard that aims to make smart devices from different manufacturers work together. The company has announced plans to bring Matter to Amazon devices as well as important Matter partnerships with other brands. Matter aims to help device makers to focus more on innovations then trying to ensure that their smart devices work properly with other systems.
In the coming days, this standard will be implemented in over 100 million Amazon devices, including Echo devices, smart plugs, switches, and bulbs. Together with the Matter announcement, Amazon also introduced new Works with Alexa (WWA) certification requirements for Matter devices to help support innovation and choice.
New Smart Home Hub From SwitchBot
SwitchBot, a leader in smart home technology, announced its new Hub 2 at the CES 2023 conference. This new hub will include support for Matter, a new standard for smart home devices that allows for greater compatibility and integration between different products. With this support, SwitchBot’s ecosystem products will be able to work seamlessly with Matter through Hub 2.
The first product that will take advantage of this support is the SwitchBot Curtain, which will now be able to work with Apple Home through Matter. This is exciting news for HomeKit users, as it means that for the first time, they will have official support for SwitchBot products in Apple Home.
The SwitchBot Hub 2 is a powerful smart home hub that uses Matter over Wi-Fi to connect and control SwitchBot products. It allows users to control their Bluetooth devices through Matter on platforms such as Apple Home, and also includes a Thermo-hygrometer function that allows users to monitor temperature and humidity levels via the Home App.
The official launch of the SwitchBot Hub 2 is set for late February 2023. At that time, the SwitchBot Curtain will receive an over-the-air (OTA) update to enable support via the Hub 2, once the final certification is completed. Later this year, SwitchBot plans to bring support for other devices that are supported in the Matter 1.0 standard. This includes the SwitchBot smart lock, but no specific timeframe has been given for when this support will be available for other devices.
Overall, this is exciting news for fans of SwitchBot and for those who use Apple Home.
Smart Home AI-Generated Illustration of the Week!
This is it for today, See you next Sunday morning 😉. If you have colleagues, friends, or neighbors that would benefit from knowing about smart home devices, please consider sharing them. They can sign up for the newsletter by going here.