Google’s latest smart-home hub, the Google Home, is finally available for purchase
The rising usage of smart-home assistants has led to the inevitable launch of Google Inc.’s (NASDAQ:GOOGL) very own smart-hub; the Google Home. The tech giant hopes that the launch of its own smart-home device will help give rivals like Amazon.com, who have also experimented with a smart-speaker, a run for its money.
Powered by the Google AI Assistant, the tech giant’s new smart-home controller enables users to perform a variety of tasks with voice-commands. Users can choose to playback music, use it as a multi-room feature as well as a controller for their smart-home appliances.
With a price tag of $129, the speaker-device is available for online orders and at brick-and-mortar outlets. Considering that retail chain, Walmart, created quite a stir last week after bringing the company’s connected gadget on shelves earlier than their scheduled launch, the smart-home hub’s availability prior to its launch may have worked as a marketing boost for the device.
However, since the stores’ employees made sure that no purchases were made prior to Google Home’s release date, it seems that the wait is finally over. Interested buyers can also purchase the device from the Google Store alongside retail chains such as Best Buy and Target.
We believe that Google’s decision to unveil its new-generation smart-home controller at third-party retail outlets will work as a great way to boost sales. Since the retail giant already has excessive competition in markets thanks to Amazon’s rapid expansion plan for its line-up of smart-speakers, such a step helps Google to eliminate some of its existing competition. Subsequently, since the device is almost $50 cheaper than the Echo, Google seems to have planned its pricing structure to appeal to more buyers.
Even though Amazon has ramped up on its number of offerings or “skills” since last year, there is a chance that Google’s emergence in markets will decrease some of Echo’s hype. The Echo’s Skills Kit is a feature which incorporates a wide range of third-party services in order to provide Echo-owners with options to order an Uber or get a weather update simply by asking the speaker’s virtual assistant, Alexa. While Echo-owners may remain adamant to continue using Amazon’s smart-speaker, there is a probability that the emergence of Google Home might cause some Echo-owners to switch allegiance.