Google Home is finding a new home in a new part of the world. At a media event in New Delhi, the tech giant officially launched the Google Home and Google Home Mini — the former will be made available for 9,999 rupees ($154), and the latter will cost 4,499 rupees ($69). The announcement comes about a month after Google Assistant rolled out language support for Hindi. And given that leading competitor Amazon also recently began selling its Echo line of smart home hubs (including the Echo Plus, Echo, and Echo Dot), it’s high time that Google got in on the game, too.
While Google didn’t beat Alexa to the market, it may find wider adoption given that Assistant is able to actually understand the predominant language in India. Compare that to Amazon’s smart assistant, which can neither understand nor speak Hindi. So while the Echo products have a set of local skills for the Indian market, they will have to be accessed using the English language (or one of the others that Alexa does support).
In any case, when it comes to the Google Home, it would appear that plenty has already been done to ensure that the smart speaker plays nicely with its new environment. The Home already supports a number of major music streaming services found in India, like Saavn and Gaana. And there’s also a new English (India) language option available on some early local units. This feature allows Assistant to better understand local English dialects in the southeast Asian nation, and also helps her differentiate among different family members and adjust its responses accordingly.
As we noted previously, Google has clearly priced its smart speakers to be competitive with Amazon. The Echo Dot sells for 4,500 rupees, while the Echo sells for 10,000. The larger Echo Plus costs 15,000 rupees — unfortunately, for the time being, it doesn’t appear as though Google is rolling out its Max speaker. This, of course, could change as folks in India begin to familiarize themselves with the new Google line. The Google Home in India will boast the same features as it does in the U.S. — users will be able to set reminders, check out the latest news, control smart home devices, get weather and traffic updates, listen to music, and more.
Updated on April 10: Google Home officially launched in India.
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