Google Home And Google Assistant Essential Guide
About a year ago, Amazon announced Amazon Echo, an artificial intelligence Bluetooth speaker. Somehow similar to Apple’s Siri assistant, only that it is called Alexa. The device is a speaker and also a personal assistant. The Amazon Echo sales were so high that the company went on to launch three more versions.
Now, a year later, at Google I/O 2016, Google announced its version of the smart AI speaker, called Google Home. Here’s everything we know so far; what it is, how it works, and, most important, when you can order yours.
What is Google Home?
Google Home is a complex of three devices, all in one. The speaker, the AI personal assistant, and the smart controller for all your smart devices in your home. The new gadget comes as a small-sized speaker and microphone set, designed to sit in your room and respond to your commands. Google home can help with anything: from answering your questions, checking the weather or even help you find and buy goods online.
The device is similar to Echo, Amazon’s smart speaker released almost two years ago. Although mocked when it was first revealed, the Echo has become like a “family member” in many homes, after becoming one of the most sold devices by Amazon, in the last year.
However, Google’s plans with Home are slightly different. The company plans on controlling all your smart devices rather than just acting like one. It works with all the smart products from Nest, and it can also integrate with any Google Cast-enabled device in your house.
What Is Google Assistant?
Now that you know what Google Home is, let’s find out more about the Google Assistant. The so-called “new bot”, announced at Google’s I/O this year, is an upgraded version of Google Now, with one significant difference. Google Assistant allows for two-way conversations, thanks to its more advanced AI capabilities.
For example, booking your cinema tickets with the new Google Assistant will go like this: Start by asking the Assistant “What’s playing tonight?” The bot is intelligent enough to understand you want to know which movies are playing at your local cinema. After showing a few titles, you could say “We are planning on going with the kids” at which point the assistant shows just the family-friendly movies.
You could then say “Ok, let’s see the Jungle Book”, and the assistant buys you four tickets (it has learned by now how many members your family has) and then send a QR code to your email which you can show at the cinema entrance.
However, the conversation could also go in many different ways. Instead of choosing a movie from the filtered selection, you could say “Is the Jungle Book any good?” and the Assistant would then display reviews and ratings from IMDB.
Google Home is just another hardware device able to make use of the new Google Assistant AI. You can also use it on your Android (N) smartphone, in your car, that runs Android Auto of course, and also on your TV via Chromecast. Continue a conversation, from where you’ve left, works too.
What Can Google Home Do?
You can even ask your assistant to play you a particular song with the confidence the AI will find it online and play it for you. Or, you can ask more complex “time-location” questions like: “When is the Father’s Day this year?” or, “What’s the weather like in Pairs right now?” All inquiries must start with “OK, Google” keywords, that gets the AI listening to your voice.
Google Home Is Just A Part of Google’s Efforts To Run Your Home
Recap: Google Home is a three-part smart home system. Part one and two are the Google Assistant AI and the Bluetooth speaker functionalities, which we’ve already covered above. The third part is a virtual hub for smart home devices, similar in nature to Samsung SmartThings.
Google did not detail on every single compatible device or hardware, but you can count on Nest’s series of products to work with Google Home straight out of the box.
Google Home Release Date And Price
There is no official release date yet, at least, nothing more than “it is coming later this year”. Most likely, ready just in time for the Winter Holidays shopping season.
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The countries that are going to get the device first are yet to be announced. However, judging from Google’s previous roll outs, the U.S. is going to be first, and the U.K. shortly after.
Price wise, it is safe to assume that Google won’t drift too far from its main competitor. The Amazon Echo costs right now $179.99 in the U.S. In fact; Google may look to undercut its rival on price, and this is again an assumption based on Google’s previous market behaviour.
Expect a price between $150 to $175 but just to stay safe, make sure you put aside $200 if you want to buy one. Make sure you bookmark this page and stay up to date with the latest Google Home news. Stay tuned.
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