At the company’s “Made by Google” event, Google Inc. provided more details on its voice-controlled smart home speaker, which it initially unveiled at its I/O conference earlier this year. But Google will be playing catchup to Amazon.com Inc.’s Echo, which has already established a name for itself with a two-year head start.
The Amazon Echo, however, wasn’t going to dominate the market forever and will soon face competition from Google Home, due out early next month.
Here’s a look at the various features offered by the smart home speakers and how Google Home and Amazon Echo differ:
In the nearly two years since launch, Amazon Echo has sold over three million devices, according to estimates from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (pdf download), and has managed to accumulate thousands of third-party apps or what Echo refers to as “skills.”
Thanks to its API being opened up to developers, users can complete a variety of tasks with the Amazon Echo, including train updates from National Rail, recipe ideas from Jamie Oliver, as well as the ability to order a pizza from Domino’s, book an Uber ride or even make a Capital One credit card payment. Echo also works with the company’s newly launched music-streaming service Amazon Music Unlimited.
Google Home, on the other hand, works with much fewer apps, but is slowly adding to its offering, and currently includes the following:
Audio apps: Listen to audio via Google Play Music, YouTube Music, Spotify, Pandora and TuneIn.
Smart home apps: Control various smart home devices, including Nest Thermostats, Philips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, Google Chromecast and IF by IFTTT.
Tasks: In addition to Google Keep being integrated with Google Home, it also integrates with Google Calendar ensuring you can get an update on upcoming meetings for the day.
Sources: Amazon, Google, via SiliconAngle