On a recent Internet of Things Podcast episode, we took a call from our Voicemail hotline segment with a question about energy monitoring and Matter. Billy currently uses smart plugs and outlets from Etekcity and TP-Link. As Billy preps for Matter devices in his home, he wants to know which ones are best for him.
Billy may have meant which Matter devices in general but since Matter-certified devices are only now becoming available, we looked at the smart energy aspect of the question. We’re sure to review Matter devices as they debut, so stay tuned for updates on those throughout the year.
In terms of smart energy management, Matter isn’t quite ready to handle that. The current spec is Matter version 1.0 and it doesn’t include support for energy management at the application layer. And from what we’re hearing, the next version of the Matter spec is unlikely to add this. Instead, it will focus on devices such as robot vacuums and home appliances.
That means any devices that can monitor your electric use won’t be using Matter for that data any time soon. Perhaps not even this year. However, there is some good news here.
When I upgraded the firmware of the Eve Smart Energy plug to Matter, I initially lost access to the energy consumption data that the device provided me in the past. And that makes sense for the above reason: Matter isn’t yet equipped to deal with that information.
About a week after the Matter upgrade on the Eve plug, a software update brought that energy data back to the Eve mobile app.
Can I do anything with that data using Matter, such as create an automation or routine with it? No, not yet, of course. But I didn’t lose functionality, or at least I didn’t for long. I expect device makers that already capture and report energy usage from their devices will continue to do so, even after those devices work with Matter. That will at least help the transition as smart home owners wait for the Matter specification to incorporate energy data.
To hear Billy’s question, as well as our full discussion on the topic, tune in to the Internet of Things podcast below: