The Internet of Things has made it possible to do things that would earlier only be a part of science fiction movies – turn on music with a command of your voice, turn on your lights, program thermostat to turn on or off or get an answer to any question you want. This practical implosion of home connecting technology was started with the Amazon Echo, and followed up by many products who have tried to replicate the magic; but the one competitor that stands out is Google Home.
Amazon Echo or Google Home Hub – The Answer
Worried which of the two is better? Here is a round up of what both has to offer first.
If you still haven’t quite understood what Amazon Echo does, think of it as a small black cylinder, equipped with Bluetooth and far field, connected to the Internet and a microphone that is always on. There is a personal assistant called Alexa. You can use it to control smart home products, to order yourself a pizza, track a package or to play some music. The best thing is that there are hundreds of Alexa ‘skills’, and more are added regularly which makes the whole list grow considerably. Alexa is capable of doing around a thousand ‘skills’.
Among the more popular alternatives to the Amazon Echo is Google Home. Google Home too integrates with your smart home products, answers questions, and helps you with various skills like checking a flight status or making a to-do list. All you have to do is say ‘Okay, Google’ and you can command whichever task you need. The voice commands and the comprehension on the Google Home system are outstanding, and it performs tasks smoothly. It also offers the ease of familiarity for those already using Android products.
The presence of these two behemoths in the market may make it hard to decide which one to choose if you want to feel the future a little early. Here are the pros of each product over the other, which will help make the decision.
Amazon Echo – Advantages over Google Home
So, in the race between Amazon Echo or Google Home Hub, what works for the former?
- The biggest advantage that Amazon Echo provides is how much like an actual personal assistant Alexa feels. For activating Google home, you need an ‘Okay, Google’ command, which is kind of robotic. Alexa responds to Alexa, Amazon and Echo; and the Echo lights up around the edges when it is listening, creating for a much more fulfilling experience than the Google Assistant. Apart from this, Alexa is attuned to human sensibilities – for example, if you ask Alexa how kids are born, it replies in an awkward tone to ask Mommy or Daddy. This is wonderful for parents with younger children. If a child asks Alexa about Santa Claus, the assistant will play along.
- The constant number of skills that Alexa is able to do is upgraded very frequently. You can even play tic tac toe or bingo with Alexa, call an Uber, get Alexa to entertain you telling jokes, or hold an actual conversation – Alexa even gets movie and TV series references, and replies in the same fashion.
- Amazon Echo has a bigger list of smart home partnerships, making it easy for a wider variety of people to use it without modifications to their entire house. Google Home has notably partnered with Nest and certain other third party products; but Echo has a [partnership with Nest, Ecobee, SmartThings, Wink, Insteon, Belkin WeMo, Philips Hue, Lifx, Big Ass Fans, IFTTT, and with other devices via “Skills”.
- Finally, Alexa is the future – Alexa will be present not only in Amazon devices, but all around you in 2019 itself. Alexa is available in the Samsung Family Hub Bridge, and the Ford Sync. The latter has even garnered rave reviews – here Alexa has adapted itself to an automobile and combines its usual skills with some driving skills. Third party devices too are getting integrated with Alexa. The first of these is the Invoxia Triby – it helps you make your refrigerator smarter without spending a small fortune on one, and it comes integrated with Alexa.
Google Home – Advantages over Amazon Echo
When it comes to Amazon Echo or Google Home Hub, how does the latter fare?
- The Amazon Echo devices can’t be synced with each other. For example, if you have more than one Echo, you can’t get one song to play simultaneously on all your devices throughout the house. Google Home provides a benefit here, as all a speaker needs is to be enabled with Google Cast and you will be able to use it for music, either individually or simultaneously.
- Another edge Google Home has over Amazon Echo is that it is customizable. You can make it your own with different choices of colors and materials. This might make a difference to a particular sect of shoppers.
Conclusion – which one to buy?
So. Amazon Echo or Google Home Hub – what’s the answer? For a truly smart, integrated home, keeping in mind the human touch, the Amazon Echo emerges as the clear choice. Google has a lot of catching up to do. However if you are big on large parties or need an amazing sound system throughout your house, you might consider the Google Home; but as an overall product, the Amazon Echo wins because of its versatility and realness. Plus the regular updates make it more exciting as well as useful. The way Alexa’s reach is spreading clearly shows that it is the personal assistant of the future.