Google's smart speaker with display due this year

Before Christmas, Google is set to unveil a smart speaker fitted with a display (seemingly similar to the JBL Link View or Amazon's Echo Show), according to sources close to the Nikkei Asian Review.

"Google targets to ship some three million units for the first batch of the new model of smart speaker that comes with a screen," an industry source said. "It's an aggressive plan."

The tech company's current line up includes the Google Home Mini, Google Home and Google Home Max - as well as having Google Assistant built into a number of third-party speakers such as the JBL Link 20, LG WK7 ThinQ, Sony LF-S50G and (soon) the Sonos One.

One advantage Google's smart-screen speakers might have over competing products from Amazon (or Apple in the future) is the inclusion of YouTube. The video streaming site left Amazon products at the end of last year, but as a monopoly - in all but name - it's difficult to see any competing platform getting the same amount of attention.

Of course, more Google devices in the home will benefit the Chromecast-connected ecosystem - bringing together Android televisions, wireless speakers, and other internet-connected devices.

And the more tightly-knit the system, the more Google will learn about you and the more valuable its data becomes. How that plays out against its competitors remains to be seen.


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Adam was a staff writer for What Hi-Fi?, reviewing consumer gadgets for online and print publication, as well as researching and producing features and advice pieces on new technology in the hi-fi industry. He has since worked for PC Mag as a contributing editor and is now a science and technology reporter for The Independent.