It was to be expected, since Ikea has been an official supporter of the Matter initiative for quite some time: The Swedes’ smart home system will also work with the cross-manufacturer smart home standard in the near future. But it was not until today that the company announced more details.
A new smart home control center
The Trådfri Gateway will be replaced by a new radio control center: the Dirigera Hub. It will be Matter-enabled, is said to have improved software and support more products than before. “The Ikea range currently includes sound, lighting, air purifiers and blinds – and there will be a few more in the future“, promises Björn Block, Business Area Manager at Ikea.
A new version of the Ikea Home Smart App is available to reflect the expanded range of functions on the smartphone. It is to be released at the same time as the Dirigera Hub in October 2022 – in other words, at the targeted launch of the Matter standard. Those who already own smart Ikea products can easily move them to the new hub, the manufacturer promises. Remote access is then to be added from summer 2023. For the first time, Ikea wants to enable its customers to control their home appliances themselves while on the move. Currently, this requires support from an additional system such as Amazon Alexa or Apple HomeKit.
Prepared for Thread
Furthermore, the new hub is supposed to be technically capable of connecting wireless Zigbee devices as well as those with the Thread radio protocol. It is part of the Matter standard and will be used in products from Eve Systems, for example. A Dirigera Hub could then take over the role of border router for such Thread products and make an additional wireless bridge superfluous. However, it is not said that Ikea will enable the functionality right at launch. Both Matter compatibility and the thread radio could just as well be added to the Dirigera Hub later with a software update.
Owners of a Trådfri gateway who prefer to stay with their familiar control panel should still be able to use it with their familiar app, but will then probably not enjoy any innovations.
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