Google Home an Amazon echo rival was announced at the Google’s I/O 2016 on the 18th of May.

Google-Home-1463593313-0-0.jpg

(Picture: home.google.com)

The release date of the device has been set on the later this year and further announcement will follow on the 4th of October. These are all of the facts about the launch date so far. There is no exact information about the roll-out countries as well, but a guess is that Google Home will be available at the US market at first. Amazon Echo release date in the US was 23rd of June 2015 and it’s price is $ 179,99, so most probably it’s competitor will have a similar price.

Amazon_Echo_03-595x334

(Picture: Amazon.com)

So what’s in the box? Google Home as well as Amazon Echo use deep learning for the speech recognition. Whenever for example one speaks to the Echo, features from a deep neural network are used to describe the audio stream in order to detect the wake-words (“Alexa”, “Amazon”, or “Echo”). Once the wake-word is detected, neural networks are used to predict the sequence of phonetic states from the audio sequence of the whole microphone array.

Starting from “Alexa, turn it up.”, “Alexa, shaffle my Favorites playlist” which give you control over your music Alexa can be in charge of closing the garage door or deeming the light in the bedroom.

Alexa – the brain behind Echo – is built in the cloud, so it is always getting smarter. The more one uses Echo, the more it adapts to the voice, speech and preferences. One is also able to set up and manage the system through the free App.

Turning up the music, opening the garage door or managing a smart home are the actions which are already available for the voice-activated home products, but there are definitely more possibilities to follow.

For me as for a product manager there are always a couple of questions which I have:

  • How can a voice-activated device be used / compatible with my products?
  • How will such a device influence the future trends and customer behaviors?
  • What can I do to stay up-to-date in the modern environment?

Having thoughts about it and asking those questions can lead to a nice user-orientated product or even an innovation.

Looking forward to the release and first reviews of the Google Home.

Here is the amazon information page for Alexa: https://www.amazon.de/