Sonos is about to add a new weapon to its smart speakers that will help make it even more competitive against Apple’s HomePod.
The company revealed today that it plans to bring Google Assistant to its smart speakers later this year. Beta testing for the new feature has already begun, allowing Google’s Siri-competitor to be the main voice input on some Sonos speaker models.
Compared to the lawless wilderness that is certain other app stores, Apple’s App Store is a well-regulated place, free from dodgy fake apps masquerading as the real thing.
Clearly someone in Cupertino got a little too merry with the egg nog recently, however, since a phony version of the Amazon Alexa app was recently granted permission to enter the App Store. It even managed to hit the #6 spot in the App Store’s utilities section over the holidays.
If you’ve read about technology in the last five years, you’ve heard about the internet of things. It represents a merging of the physical and digital worlds, where devices of all kinds are network-enhanced.
That futuristic world is already here, and we rounded up some of our best deals on IoT-ready gear so you can embrace it fully. You’ll find great buys on an Alexa-enabled smart clock, an app-connected outlet, a mini vacuum droid and more.
Entrepreneurs are tripping over themselves to make “smart” versions of every product we already own. As such, it was only going to be so long before someone made a smart scent dispenser. That product is called Moodo. It’s a smart home fragrance box that lets you control how your home smells from your iPhone. Or your smart speaker.
But does it smell like a winner, or is this one gadget we’re turning our nose up at?
If Siri seems to be of greater service to you lately, an annual IQ test comparing virtual assistants shows its definitely getting smarter.
Loup Ventures annually peppers the various digital assistants with five categories of questions and when it comes to accuracy and comprehension of a user’s question, Google Assistant remains the best. Siri, however, is right behind Google while Amazon’s Alex and Cortana lags behind in that order.
Sonos is opening its speakers to a new world of listening experiences today with the addition of AirPlay 2.
The smart speaker company teased AirPlay 2 support last month during the introduction of its Beam speaker. Now, just over a month after Apple added AirPlay 2 as part of iOS 11.4, Sonos is the first third-party speaker company to dive head first into the new tech. And the company added a few tricks your HomePod can’t match.
Craig Federighi is no longer in charge of Siri. Responsibility for Apple’s troubled voice assistant has been given to John Giannandrea, who is now in charge of all Apple’s artificial intelligence efforts.
Siri is seen as poor competition for Amazon Alexa, Microsoft Cortana, and Google Assistant. Its weakness is hurting sales of Apple products, including the HomePod.
In the battle of digital voice assistants, people often mock Siri for lagging behind competing products from Amazon and Google. During Monday’s WWDC 2018 keynote, Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, glossed over those failings, calling Siri the “world’s most-used digital assistant.”
What he neglected to mention was the increasing frustration of Siri users expecting more from a voice assistant. From simple requests returning inaccurate results to the inability to performthat he compound actions, Siri was in desperate need of attention going into WWDC. But will the Siri upgrades in iOS 12 do the trick?