Google is brewing a competitor to Amazon Echo

by: John DyeMarch 24, 2016


The most curious thing about the Amazon Echo is that it wasn’t intended to be the breakaway success that it was. The project was developed almost experimentally to see what could be done with the technology, and although Amazon certainly hoped to find a niche audience, the massive success of the Echo was something that nobody really saw coming. Not used to being a latecomer to the innovation game, Google is actively developing a voice recognition device to go toe to toe with the A-to-Z retailer’s personal home assistant.

amazon-echo-2See also: Amazon Echo owners can now listen to Spotify

The project looks like it may be tangentially related to Google’s ongoing Nest development. Those paying close attention may recall that Google acquired the smarthome tech company Nest a while back, but as of yet they haven’t really done much with the property. Word on the street is that a suite of smarthome products is currently under development under the codename Flintstone, which seems to call to mind the living, sentient quality of the accessories that festooned the abode of everyone’s favorite Bedrock residents in the classic animated show. The products down the pipe seem to include an advanced security system, an improved central hub, and Bluetooth tags that would allow the home to keep track of the location of inhabitants so as to better accommodate their needs.

The Echo competitor is being kept under tight wraps, so we don’t even have an internal name yet. Although we can expect the device to integrate with Nest tech, the project is so beneath the radar that when Nest offered to be a part of the project, Google politely turned them down, indicating that they would prefer to keep the development of the device totally internal. It’s possible that this device might not even see the light of day, but stay tuned to Android Authority and we’ll keep you up to date on everything we know as it arrives.

Amazon Echo DotNext: Amazon unveils the Echo Dot and Tap, two new Alexa-enabled devices4
  • I’ve already seen the “hands free Siri” commercial several times [featuring the cookie monster]!

  • I’ve had Windows 10 since insider previews started. Now that Cortana is pretty mature, I can call her from almost anywhere in my house and get answers, start and change music over Spotify, and everything else. With my webcam or another microphone selected for the system, I have Cortana available all the time. Incredibly usable. Forget a stand alone. It’s already baked into your Windows 10 system.

  • John Doe

    I have been waiting for the ability to tell my home automation system to raiselower the lightsmusic, etc in the room I am in for years now .. maybe this will become a reality sometime ..

    • balcobomber25

      That’s what I have a wife for!

      • John Doe

        Brillant .. can I borrow her?

        • balcobomber25

          She’s pretty busy between all my needs and putting me in my place lol.

          • John Doe

            Does she have a good looking sister then .. lol (don’t answer that .. LOL)

          • balcobomber25

            She has a 13 year old brother lol.

          • John Doe

            What?? how old is your wife?? or for legal rights you cannot answer that question .. (plead the 5th) .. LOLOLOLOLOLOL …

          • balcobomber25

            She is 25, I am 32.

  • JimAlaska

    Now that Amazon has given everybody carte blanch to build their own, Google is really going to have to come from behind. You just know Raspberry are disappearing of the shelves (as if they weren’t already). There have been podcasters scratching their heads for months wondering how Google let Amazon beat them to the punch on this.