Aqara’s first Matter-over-Thread sensor is now available for purchase. The P2 door and window sensor is priced at $29.99 / £29.99 / €32.99 and integrates directly into existing Matter-enabled smart homes, as it does not require an Aqara hub to operate. But those who choose to use the sensor with Aqara’s upcoming M3 Hub will enable additional features like a built-in programmable button.
The P2 door and window sensor uses a magnet to identify if a window or door is open or closed, a feature that can be useful in a number of smart home automations. For example, they can be used to enhance security, remind you to close a window when it starts to rain, or warn you that a freezer door has been left open too long. The P2 door and window sensor comes with an adhesive backing “that won’t damage the wall if removed,” says Aqara, and a thin magnetic plate for additional mounting options.
Thankfully, Aqara’s solid white two-piece sensor is indescribable, with no visible logos or wordmarks. This is important if you want to fit dozens of these sensors around the house without turning it into Times Square. I know a lot of people who paint their sensors to fit better with their doors and windows, but beware: there’s a little Matter logo and pairing code hidden on the inside edge of this new Aqara sensor that you’ll need to keep a trace. .
The main sensor unit houses a new high-capacity 1400mAh CR123 battery, making it significantly longer than the company’s Zigbee-based door and window sensor. It measures 77 x 22 x 22mm, which is about as long as a typical smartphone is wide. Aqara offers no longevity claims for the new battery, saying it depends on how often the low-power sensor is polled and which apps and border router it connects to. Weird, because the company says its old sensor “can last more than 2 years under normal use.”
Unlike the company’s previous Zigbee-based door and window sensor that required connection to an Aqara hub, the Thread-based P2 sensor works with any Matter-enabled Thread edge router. This allows it to integrate seamlessly into any Matter-enabled ecosystem like Amazon, Apple, Google, and others. You might even have a Thread edge router in your home already in the form of a fourth-gen Echo, Apple TV 4K, or second-gen Nest Hub, to name a few.
Aqara will launch its first Thread border router, the M3 Hub, in early 2024, alongside an update to the Aqara Home app to support Matter. P2 door and window sensors paired with the M3 Hub will benefit from additional features such as a tamper alert, adjustable sensitivity between one and three centimeters, and a programmable button that can activate a custom home scene or automation when he’s in a hurry. Until then, the functionality of the button on the main unit is limited to setting up and resetting the device.
The company first teased the P2 door and window sensor alongside a Thread P2-compatible motion and light sensor at CES in January 2022. The motion sensor will still arrive “later this year,” according to the Aqara representative Michelle Li in an email exchange with The edge. Yes, this is a delay from the original “early 2023” release plan.
Aqara is also well on its way to adding Matter support to its existing hubs to tie its suite of legacy Zigbee devices to the new unifying smart home protocol and has “various smart sensors, dimmers, smart plugs and lights”. on its Thread-enabled roadmap remains to come.