As the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2018 unfolds in Las Vegas, one thing that seems prominent is that 2018 is going to be the tipping point for smart home technology. We've already seen Samsung claiming to take the connected lifestyle to the next level with SmartThings. Now another South Korean tech giant LG has unveiled a new artificial intelligence (AI) brand set to take over its smart devices.
At the ongoing CES, LG announced ThinQ and Deep ThinQ AI, which will allow LG's connected devices to communicate with each other. The AI platform is open to utilizing software made by other companies. LG also announced the integration of Google Assistant into its products including TVs, headphones and smart speakers.
LG also introduced a cute table-top robotic room service, named CLOi, at the event. The on-stage demonstration, however, went awry as the voice-commanded device refused to respond to commands of David VanderWall, LG's Vice President of marketing. "Even robots have bad days," VanderWall brushed off the embarrassment.
LG is working on more small-sized smarter robots, crafted to serve as hotel porters or room service.
Voice commanded assistants play the centric role in connected homes. Samsung has its own virtual assistant, Bixby, which itself is on par with Amazon Alexa and Google assistant. So the fight for being the global leader of virtual assistants is most likely to be between Alexa and Google assistant, says Patrick Moorhead, founding President of Moor Insights and Strategy.
"The biggest theme is the fight for connected home between Google and Amazon," he said in a press briefing.
"Competition is heating up for the smart assistant ecosystem, and the question is who is going to be the smart assistant choice of 2018," said Brian Blau, Gartner analyst. "The loser, if any, is Cortana because nobody is talking about them," he added. The fact the Alexa with be shipping on Windows 10 laptops also means Cortana is ready to be sent to pasture.
Be it Google assistant or Amazon Alexa, one thing is for sure that connected homes will achieve greater heights this year. The smart home technology is making big strides forward and we can't wait to see more of it.