This is not an official answer. But I bet any freely available FTDI flash program with a cheap FTDI usb-to-Serial adapter will work.
Matter/Thread on the move with Home Assistant. also mention they are open sourcing their automated build scripts to create reproducible firmware builds for Zigbee/Thread sticks based on SiLabs chips.
EDIT: I could be mistaken, but Home assistant appears to be using the same soc Silabs EFR32MG21 as is in the Blue switches.
One of the most interesting parts of Matter, coming from the ZigBee world, is that it uses the same ZigBee cluster library and communications, but in top of ipv6 on thread or WiFi or Ethernet.
So hopefully firmware wise, very little will change, except configuring the underlying is (freeRTOS? Zephyr?) To use matter instead of ZigBee, and the upper layer firmware bits should be mostly unchanged.
Hopefully this means the experience with things like Alexa and Google home should be about the same as they are with ZigBee, and similar with smart things (and hubitat and HA, as they get matter support), which will be able to use the fancy features.
Sadly, it means the fancy features are still locked to the power user hubs, unless inovelli or someone else makes a configuration app to configure them over matter.
Any updates on the possibility of the white series coming to life?
if you read back on the evolution of this whole thread, I think you’ll see what was originally going to be a separate “white series” to provide Matter/Thread has morphed into a firmware update for the Blue Series.
In other words, the capabilities and features outlined in the original White Series announcement well be available as a firmware upgrade to the Blue Series.
It’s taken me almost 2 years at this point, but I have some great news for all you Thread/Matter enthusiasts. I’m going to self-fund this project (ie: personal, non-Inovelli money) and I’ve kicked it off with the manufacturer!
Tentative delivery time is February 2024.
Since Thread/Matter is much different than Z-Wave and Zigbee, this switch will be a lot more basic than the Blue/Red Series, so I want to set those expectations up front. It will have the same hardware as the Blue Series 2-1, but it will not have all the bells and whistles and I’m working with the engineers to determine what all can be accomplished right now.
The good news is the same guy who’s written the firmware for our Blue and Red Series 2-1, also has just gone through Matter training and he’s really excited to start this project.
In fact, he has been writing some Matter firmware as a side project for himself.
Here’s a video he sent me the other day with our switch connecting to a HomePod directly (look at the 7 LED’s changing on the left)
Just some back story for those that are new to this thread:
Over the course of a couple years, we’ve gotten requests almost weekly to come out with a Thread/Matter switch and I’ve had to turn it down due to resources, and lack of real understanding of Thread and even moreso Matter.
I had been thinking about this switch one day randomly in August and at the same time someone IM’d our chat bot and simply said, “Matter” and I thought, “oh boy, another person I have to turn down, this stinks”. But he and I had an awesome conversation which lead me to start researching again what all it would take to start this switch.
Then a couple days later @jvm33 started posting about Matter and he and I have had some incredible conversations with him also providing us a ton of knowledge around Thread/Matter and what it can do.
The final straw was when I started talking to the firmware engineer and I found out this was a passion project for him and he’s already gone through Matter training and actually has been messing around with our switches and HomeKit.
@Eric_Inovelli that is really interesting news, and quite welcome.
Can you expand upon what you mean by dropping “bells and whistles”? Are we talking about things like scene support, etc.? At the end of the day, these kinds of things should be supported by the platform (Matter-based control systems), not the switches and bulbs and individual devices themselves, so I don’t think that matters much. But clarification would help!
Yeah happy to expand!
At this time I only want to promise on things I know we can deliver on. While it may be possible to have the more advanced features our Zigbee and Z-Wave switches have (scene control, animated notifications, etc), we aren’t going to lead with that right away.
The purpose of this switch is to get something out there so that HomeKit users, Google users, etc have something Inovelli branded and get a taste of what we bring to the table.
People have been reaching out to me constantly asking for us to just get a basic switch out there to compete. Our hardware is better already, but just give those crazy Apple guys something to work with!
So, right now I’d rather under promise and over deliver on what we can do. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ll say something might be possible and it’s used against me later on lol.
I know we can do certain parameters (ie: dim rate, ramp rate, and all the various bulb calibration parameters) because we can build them directly into the switch and have manual way to adjust them in case the hub does not support it (via tap sequences). So right now, these are the parameters I’m promising until I know we can officially do them.
I learned the other day that there is a Matter equivalent of Binding for Smart Bulb Mode, so I can potentially add that in. But again, right now this is all theory and looking at tech docs and not practice so I want to be cautious.
Hope that somewhat clears it up?
I can list out the specific parameters we asked for if you want?
Edit: Just want to clarify in case my tone didn’t come off the way it was supposed to. Inovelli has always been about offering the best, most innovative switches and we will continue to do that. As we learn more about Matter, I can make more confident statements on what can be offered. But know that our spirit and goal is to deliver on our brand equity which is making the most innovative products on the market.
Yup, thanks for stepping into the breach here. This was exactly my sentiment. What seems like a limited feature set to you will be unparalled on the Matter over Thread side and as you stated your hardware can be trusted to semi-permanently put in a wall.
EDIT: Add to that those make the choice of staying in the Apple ecosystem have long ago come to terms with paying a price premium for the perception/reality of better quality and longer use and/or company support not infrequently with limited but working features. So many of the things you fear are already baked into the cake for us.
The best explanation I’ve seen of user’s minimal wish lists is here: https://youtu.be/TRTkCHE1sS4 (and a bit inclusive of my own!).
How are we able to purchase the product? Kickstarter page? Did you mean it would be released/start production February 2024 or you will start shipping/delivering February 2024?
I’ll probably open up pre-orders on our own website once we’re a bit further down the path. Probably when I see the first iteration of the firmware!
I was ready to give up the ship so to speak. Had started looking at alternatives. Glad to see it looks like a lot of progress! Remember not just Apple, Google, Amazon and Samsung will all be able to work with these switches. Maybe the multi button could be modified to work with this platform
Hopefully Inovelli can be among the first to get Matter bindings working. Eve planning to use Matter Bindings, among their Matter over Thread offerings at some point.
I’d be interested to see this list! I am thinking of buying Thread/Matter bulbs from Nanoleaf and would like to understand what features I can expect to work if I were to wait for the White switches to be available, or buy Blues now and flash them with a firmware upgrade later (how hard will that be?).
Ugh I’m so excited about this. Irrationally so… lol
That’s very exciting! Where will that be announced? Are you looking for beta testers?
Similarly, there’s quite a lot of back-and-forth in the thread about whether the existing Blue Series devices will be upgradable (or more likely “convertible”) from Zigbee to Thread. Since they can theoretically use the same underlying hardware, is it safe to buy Blue Series now and then switch the firmware later? Or will that require specialized hardware to flash the new firmware on the devices to switch the 2.4 Ghz radio from Zigbee to Thread?
Really excited to see this move forward, especially with the possibility of Matter bindings. The only thing better than local control via a hub is local control without a hub!
Wondering the same here, I just moved to a new house and waiting many months until getting any smart lighting is a bit of a tall order, the wife got used to smart lights in the last place and now I’m being under interrogation when I’m installing again So it would be amazing if I could buy the blue series with zigbee for now and upgrade to Thread later
Just an FYI.
Thread 1.3.1 is out there as well.