Google reportedly working on a smart screen speaker codenamed Manhattan

The Verge

The Verge

The new smart speaker will have the standard Google package on board, including YouTube, Google Assistant, the ability to control smart home devices, and support for video calls. According to those same sources, Google was aiming for a mid-2018 launch, but given the success of the Echo Show, Google is reportedly under pressure to get the product to market before the end of the year, likely in an attempt to capitalize on the holiday shopping season.

Sources also say that will also run a version of Android for enabling the third parties to create any App for it. Reports have revealed that Amazon is leading the race, with Google following close behind with a rumored device that is meant to compete with the Echo Show. It's not a stretch to imagine that Google would be working on a version of their Home smart assistant with a screen, if for no other reason than to keep pace with Amazon.

The big advantage that Google Assistant has over Alexa is the fact that it is pre-installed on millions of devices.

The online retailer is slashing prices to undercut Google, introducing better acoustics in response to a forthcoming Apple speaker and rolling out new formats to appeal to different tastes and needs. The Shield, which already has Google Assistant rolling out will soon be able to act as a home hub device, thanks to a bridge add-on, now on pre-order at $15 (around £12) - significantly lower than the £99 a dedicated Smartthings hub will cost.

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Like the company of Mark Zuckerberg and the Echo Show, the dimensions of the screen would be around 7 inches, which seems to have become nearly unintentional in the standard for these models.

Now it appears the company might be adding a touchscreen to the equation in order to compete with the Amazon Echo Show. If Google releases its own Echo Show competitor, the company would finally be able to deliver a YouTube experience that it wants.

The Google Manhattan device can also function as a smart hub to control other smart home devices like Nest's cameras and thermostats. TechCrunch claims that one service Google engineers are particularly keen on is Netflix, though simply having YouTube would be a step up from what the Echo Show has to offer.

"Google has chosen to no longer make YouTube available on Echo Show, without explanation and without notification to customers". The size and viewing angle of the screen make Echo Spot ideal for use on a nightstand or desk as a smart alarm clock that can also turn your lights on and off, watch a video flash briefing, show your commute time, get the weather, or show your calendar.

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