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Thread Smart Home Applications to Enhance the IoT Experience

Telink Staff

April 17, 2023


Woman using a smart home refrigerator device

Low-power, highly secure, and ultra-reliable, here’s why Thread is an essential component for any smart home ecosystem.

Thread facilitates the Internet of Things (IoT), improving device interoperability and communication for a highly integrative and responsive tech environment. Using IEEE 802.15.4 radio technology, this low-power wireless mesh networking protocol supports multi-vendor ecosystems. Scalable and reliable, the IP-based open standard runs on 2.4 GHz to make universality a reality.

Adaptability is crucial in a world where consumers have their own technological preferences. Thread enables developers to create secure smart home products that meet users’ needs, from multi-vendor compatibility to network stability. With applications in smart lighting, voice assistance, and more, here’s how Thread is moving the world of IoT forward.

An Overview of Thread

For a Thread environment to thrive, it must have at least a Mesh Extender (which routes signals between devices) and a Thread Border Route (which connects the Thread Network to other IP-based environments like the internet). These components allow all devices to respond to each other through Thread applications and can facilitate multicast and unicast messaging, all from a mobile device. Thread also includes built-in security at the networking layer, authenticating devices before they join the network and using MAC encryption for data residing on the network.

One of the key benefits of Thread is its ability to self-heal. Thread establishes direct device-to-device, device-to-mobile, and device-to-cloud communications, reducing latency caused by congested traffic and eliminating dropped connections for disruption-proof connectivity. And since Thread is IP-based, there’s no need for proprietary hardware like gateways or translators, helping relieve potential points of failure and maintenance costs.

Low-power and low-latency characteristics also enable battery-powered devices to operate for longer periods of time, reducing the need for frequent battery changes so that you can navigate your devices without interruption.

How Thread and Matter Intersect

Created by the Connectivity Standards Alliance, Matter is a ubiquitous standard designed to universalize all IoT environments. In this way, developers and consumers don’t have to worry about designing or purchasing specific products for their smart home ecosystem to function properly.

As an application layer standard, Matter includes three widely-used wireless communication technologies: Thread, Bluetooth LE, and Wi-Fi. Thread is best for use cases requiring low bandwidth, such as door locks, light bulbs, and thermostats; Bluetooth LE is for network setup; and Wi-Fi is for high bandwidth applications like streaming a show from an app on a smart TV.

Thread’s integration into the Matter standard allows smart home devices to communicate with other devices on the same network, regardless of their networking protocol. This makes it easier for developers to create smart home devices that can work together seamlessly, without the need to align with a brand or platform.

Top Use Cases for Thread in Smart Homes

Top use cases for Thread in smart homes

In households, IoT makes our lives easier, giving us convenient control over the facets of daily life that give us comfort. And in commercial settings, IoT streamlines productivity through automation and operational efficiency. Here’s how Thread can further augment these experiences:

  • Smart Lighting: Thread can create a mesh network of smart light bulbs, enabling users to control their lights from a single app or voice assistant.
  • Smart Thermostats: Thread’s secure communication protocol and low-power design make it a good fit for smart thermostats, enabling users to control their home’s temperature and save energy.
  • Smart Security: Thread’s mesh networking capabilities enable devices like cameras, motion sensors, and door locks to communicate with each other even if the central hub is offline, improving the system’s security.
  • Smart Appliances: Refrigerators, ovens, washing machines, and other home appliances can operate longer and communicate without a central hub with Thread’s low-power design and trustworthy connectivity features.
  • Voice Assistants: Users can control their smart home devices using natural language commands with the help of Thread’s secure communication protocol and low-power design.

Thread Your IoT Devices Together with Telink

Stay ahead of the technological curve with Telink’s forward-thinking, highly versatile SoC solutions. Telink’s TLSR9 series is Thread 1.3 Certified Component, providing the space for developers to stretch their creative limits and for consumers to experience what the future of IoT has to offer. Multi-protocol, Matter-supported, and OpenThread compatible, our quality SoCs enable manufacturers to develop products with a faster time-to-market and cloud-based updates to keep consumers on pace with the latest trends.

Experience the best of IoT with Telink’s semiconductor chips. Contact us today or reach out directly to [email protected] to learn more about how Telink can transform your smart home IoT landscape.