Smoke alarm? Check. A $1,300 smart mirror?
Amazon is integrating the Alexa virtual assistant into more non-Amazon devices, including desktop and laptop computers from several manufacturers, a line of Kohler products and new auto models, according to The Verge and other publications covering the announcements coming out of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week.
Also new this year: some serious competition.
Ives expects "a big push" from the California search giant at the trade show, he said in a research note. One quarter of smart speaker owners report having a Google Assistant product such as Google Home or Google Home Mini. Internally, Google is reportedly anxious about losing market share, with one analyst estimate predicting a 25 percent share for Google this year that will be trumped by Amazon's 68 percent.
Some of those companies have strengths Amazon can't match. Technology companies are viewing voice-controlled digital agents as the next major input mechanism for computers. While all of this is already possible on Google smartphones, these displays are meant to be stationery items that can be placed on tables and shelves and other counter-tops. Amazon's Echo, the first smart speaker on the market, was introduced in November 2014. Alexa will let drivers and passengers get directions, control entertainment features, get the news and perform other functions in the auto via voice command, said both companies.
The Wall is the flawless name chosen by South Korean electronics giant Samsung for its 146-inch television, which makes use of MicroLED components to deliver 4K resolution without a projection interface; this is an advanced Smart TV platform that includes Bixby, the Samsung virtual assistant that allows users to control devices with their voices. If you find a device that works in your smart home - you can purchase the item through The GearBrain, to help make your buying experience easier. Instead, these devices will come with better microphones and speakers.