It’s been a whole year since we heard Amazon’s now-ubiquitous voice assistant was to be implemented into TVs by US companies Element, Westinghouse and Seiki. It's been a similar length of time since we decided the same innovation must spread to TV brands across the pond too.
Well, 2017 saw Google Assistant voice control arriving on some Sony TVs -since then LG has announced its 2018 TVs will also feature Google’s personal assistant. At IFA 2017 Toshiba announced it's working on an Alexa-supported range too.
Now Hisense is getting in on the voice assistant action, confirming Alexa functionality will feature on selected 2018 4K models - including the recently announced 100in 4K Laser TV.
That means owners will not only be able to perform generic Alexa tasks – controlling smart home products or ordering a pizza, say – with just the sound of their voice, but also perform TV-related functions such as accessing Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and YouTube, changing input, volume and so on.
Clearly focusing on voice control as much as every other Tom, Dick and Harry in the industry, Hisense will also be launching a remote control and smartphone app with built-in voice technology.
What else Hisense's TV division has in store for 2018 is yet unknown – HDR? OLED? More lasers? – but with CES 2018 less than a week away, we don't have long to wait to find out.