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Google Assistant triples number of supported devices, but Amazon is still tops
- Google has announced support for over 5,000 devices, tripling January’s count.
- Amazon has reportedly revealed that Alexa supports 12,000 devices, more than doubling Google’s figure.
- Google is adding more connected devices to its library, ranging from security gadgets to more foreign devices.
Google Assistant is pretty adept at hooking into your connected appliances and devices. But exactly how adept? Well, the company has announced support for over 5,000 devices, up from just 1,500 in January 2018.
Google claims “every major device brand” in the U.S. now works with Google Assistant. This means Google Home would probably be the safest smart speaker choice for those with obscure connected devices, right? Well, not so fast, as an Amazon spokesperson told TechHive that the Alexa assistant supports over 12,000 devices from more than 2,000 brands. It certainly makes for a massive number, more than doubling Google’s figure. So if you just bought a no-name smart toaster, the numbers are in Amazon’s favor.
Google continues to add devices
The Mountain View company isn’t stopping there, though. For one, Google is improving Assistant’s support for set-top boxes, starting with DISH’s Hopper receivers this month. The company says a simple “Hey Google, play ESPN on the Hopper” will control the set-top box.
The Logitech Harmony family of universal remotes will also be getting more Google Assistant love, thanks to simplified voice commands. These streamlined commands mean you won’t have to say “talk to Logitech” to issue commands for your TV anymore.
Google is also focusing on connected security devices as part of its latest Assistant push. The first move will be enabling Assistant notifications for more security devices. This let users receive a chime or live-stream from a smart doorbell or security camera to their Assistant. This feature was first seen on the Nest Hello doorbell, but will be arriving on other devices “later this year”.
The second security-focused move will be to add more security brands to the list of supported devices. These brands include alarms from ADT, First Alert and Vivint Smart Home. But Google is also tossing in support for Panasonic security cameras, and smart door locks from August and Schlage.
Google is also supporting popular smart device brands in foreign markets, such as IKEA lights, Germany’s Magenta hub, and Xiaomi lights.
It’s clear Google has a way to go before approaching Amazon’s claimed number of supported devices. Nevertheless, the search company is working at a breakneck pace, as illustrated by the leap from 1,500 to 5,000 devices. The big question is perhaps whether Google can reach the 12,000 figure by the end of the year.
Google is also chasing Amazon in the general U.S. smart speaker market, as the retail giant enjoys a first mover advantage and a variety of “skills”. The Mountain View company is definitely biting into Amazon’s lead though, a new eMarketer survey found. Amazon speakers are expected to account for 60.8 percent of smart speakers by 2020 — down from a projected 66.6 percent in 2018. Meanwhile, Google speakers are forecast to jump from 29.5 percent marketshare in 2018 to 32.9 percent marketshare by 2020.