This year at CES, voice-activated personal assistants were everywhere. Here, I’ll run down the ones I saw and where they’re likely to pop up in your house.
Most ubiquitous was Google’s Assistant, because it was showing up all along the Las Vegas Strip — on billboards, on the sides of buildings, various kiosks, and plastered on every car of the Las Vegas Monorail. You would even find overall-clad members of the Google Assistant army throughout the CES show floor, most commonly in booths offering products that integrated Google’s Assistant. For many, this visibility won the show for Google — but we also know that Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa is well out in front both for sales of units and in its skills library.
The aforementioned Alexa didn’t have an aggressive marketing blitz backing it but it had a significant presence on the show floor. The number of products that are incorporating Alexa into their capabilities is nearly untrackable. It ranged from automobiles, smart mirrors, desktop wireless charging stands, Internet of Things, Smart Homes, televisions, refrigerators, air conditioners, pet feeders, and even smaller gadgets like headphones and smart watches.