Google Assistant will likely be available on 1 billion devices by the end of January, and it looks like the company is gunning for the next billion. Google just announced a new set of capabilities — called Google Assistant Connect — that will allow companies to add the Assistant to even more devices around the home.
Google Assistant Connect is a way for companies to bridge the gap between their existing products and an Assistant-powered smart speaker or Smart Display — without the need to add microphones and extra computing components.
Google gives the example of a company creating an e-ink display that can project the weather or a calendar, while harnessing the power of Assistant Connect to show you content from your linked smart speaker. In this case, the smart speaker would handle all the computing on its own while using Assistant Connect to transfer and display that content on the e-ink display.
At Google’s event at CES 2019, the company had a handful of e-ink display concepts with Assistant Connect. They weren’t working, but you could imagine sticking one of these displays on your fridge or bathroom mirror and always having access to your calendar or weather.
Assistant Connect will let integrated products respond to voice commands too, even if your smart speaker is in the other room. For instance, you could tap on your air conditioner and say “increase temperature by five degrees,” while the smart speaker in the other room handles the command.
The company will announce more details about Assistant Connect later this year. We might have to wait awhile for third-party companies release Connect-integrated products, but it seems like it shouldn’t be too difficult. After all, companies will now be able to spend less money and time producing expensive smart products. Instead, Google is planning on doing the heavy lifting for them.
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