The new Google Home app redesign prepares the platform for the Matter smart home standard

The new Google Home app redesign prepares the platform for the Matter smart home standard
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Google is considering an all-new Home app to control smart home devices and the many other gadgets it expects people to add to their homes after the new smart home standard Item arrives. New software is initially distributed as a public preview it will launch in a few weeks and you can sign up to try it soon.

Google Nest’s Anish Kattukaran described the new Home app, which adds a new Favorites page and support for sensors to trigger automations, and brings the camera interface from the Nest app, as “the best place to set up, control and automate Nest.” devices and every Matter device.”

The new Google Home app is coming to Wear OS

The company is also bringing Google Home to the web later this year, allowing you to view Nest camera and doorbell feeds from a web browser. Plus, you’ll be able to control your home on your wrist. The Home app is coming to Wear OS this week, debuting on the new Google Pixel Watch and rolling out to Wear OS 3 shortly after. The app will let you turn off lights, adjust your Nest Thermostat, and receive notifications from your Nest cameras on your wrist.

Google's Fast Pair app provides a smart plug using Matter.

Google’s Fast Pair app provides a smart plug using Matter.
Image: Google Nest

The issue is really important to Google

Google does totally committed to the point, the new smart home connectivity standard aims to solve many industry problems such as complex setup, confusing integrations and poor reliability.

in a briefing with The Verge, Google Nest’s Kevin Poe confirmed to me that the Google Nest Hub Max, Nest Hub (2nd generation) and all Google Nest Wifi routers (including the newly announced Nest Wifi Pro) will be Matter controllers for Google Home when the standard comes next . year This means those devices can control any Matter device locally in the home, via the interface or the Home app.

There will also be Nest devices Topic border routers Providing connection between Thread mesh network and Wi-Fi. The subject is the main protocol of the article; allowing devices to communicate more efficiently on your home network.

In addition, Po confirmed that it will work with Fast Pair Matter for Android, which allows Android phones to automatically detect any Matter device on your network and pair them with a few clicks, including any compatible Matter controller app on your smartphone. Po demonstrated building a smart plug with the ability to add it to the Google Home app or the Eve app.

The Favorites page includes a customized favorites section and new Spaces shortcut keys.

The Favorites page includes a customized favorites section and new Spaces shortcut keys.
Image: Google Nest

The new Google Home app takes its cues from the Nest app

Personalization is at the core of the new Google Home app, with the app’s home page now called ‘Favorites’. Here you can create a customized view of the devices, actions or automations you want to access the most.

It includes live streams from any camera you’ve selected as favorites and will play on the tile as soon as you open the app. Plus, any device you add—from light bulbs to locks—will give you a live status when the app opens, so you can quickly see what’s going on in your home.

There is a new Space feature at the top of the Favorites page Apple Home app’s new Shortcut keys. These take you to a collection of similar devices such as lights, cameras, climate and Wi-Fi devices.

You can have a Pet Space for your pet cam, pet feeder, robot vacuum, and air purifier.

Kattukaran awning The Verge that Google plans to add an option next year for individual Places, where you can connect devices outside of traditional room groups. For example, you can have a Pet Place for your pet, a camera, a pet feeder, a robot vacuum cleaner, and an air purifier.

The Favorites tab also features a floating mini media player that provides quick access to controls for any media playing in your home, including the Google TV remote interface. It also lets you swipe to control any other devices playing music or video in your home.

The Devices tab takes you to the traditional room view – still in alphabetical order, but now with live previews of any cameras in each room. Here you can manage and view the status of any device.

A floating media player is displayed in the app when any Google Home device is playing music or video.

A floating media player is displayed in the app when any Google Home device is playing music or video.
Image: Google Nest

Clicking on the camera tile takes you to the camera controller page, where you see a live view of the camera on a vertical graph. Here you can scroll through any video history in the same view that the Nest app offers. It includes small snapshots along the timeline so you can quickly see what’s most relevant. You can view each motion event or filter by activity, such as human or animal. This is a significant improvement over the old Home app where you had to tap multiple times to access the recorded video.

The public preview of the Home app will work with all current and discontinued Nest cameras, but will still only show video history for cameras made after 2021. Kattukaran says that within the next year, Google will completely migrate older cameras to the Home app. “The Nest app is built for wired cameras, not battery-powered cameras,” he says, explaining why the transition took time.

Saving the best for last

Finally, Google is bringing touch support to the Google Home ecosystem. This means you’ll be able to trigger automations with action. It’s not clear if contact sensors or other types of sensors like leak or smoke detectors will work as well. I contacted Google for clarification.

Kattukaran said Nest Protect smoke alarms will be ported to the new Home app, so hopefully they can also be used as triggers for automations. Additionally, he showed pressing a doorbell triggering the automation, a hint that the cameras could also be triggered based on motion detection.

Coming soon to Amazon Alexa and Apple Home for a while, you can use sensors as a

Coming soon to Amazon Alexa and Apple Home for a while, you can use sensors as a “starter” for automation in Google Home.
Image: Google

The lack of triggers (or starters as Google calls them) has been a major problem for Google Home automations. Until now, you could only initiate automation based on the time of day, when you dismiss the alarm, by tapping in the app, or using a voice command.

While the in-app automations still seem like fairly basic capabilities — though they now include the ability to schedule cameras to turn on and off — Google is introducing a script editor early next year. This web-based editor is designed for power users who want to create more complex automations with “complex triggers and multiple conditions,” says Kattukaran.

Kattukaran says that the public preview of the new Google Home app will run for a while before the Home app is officially launched. You’ll soon be able to sign up for a preview in the Google Home app, and updates will start rolling out in “a few weeks.” The preview will continue once the new Home app arrives, as Google says it will continue to refine the app based on user feedback.

Correction, Tuesday, October 4, 9:45 a.m.: This article originally stated that you could sign up to join the Google Home app preview today, but Google has clarified that the sign-up page will be available later. Also, Kevin Poe’s name is misspelled. We are sorry for the error.

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