It looks like Huawei wants to better position itself as a rival to the likes of Google and Amazon. According to Huawei CEO Richard Yu, the company is readying a new digital assistant for markets outside of China — meaning that at some point in the near future, you may use your Huawei assistant instead of Google in the U.S.
This wouldn’t be Huawei’s first digital assistant. The company already has a digital assistant in China called Xiaoyi, which operates in Huawei’s smartphones and in a smart speaker called the Huawei AI Cube. Bringing a digital assistant to countries outside China, however, would position Huawei has a major tech player in the U.S., and not just another smartphone manufacturer from the perspective of the average U.S. consumer.
“We are using our own in China, in (the) future we will also have our own outside of China,” said Richard Yu in an interview with CNBC.
Of course, just because Huawei is working on a new digital assistant for the U.S., that doesn’t mean it’ll take off at all. Right now, the space is largely dominated by Google and Alexa, with Siri bring used often, but considered to be an inferior assistant. Then there’s Samsung Bixby, which is featured on Samsung devices and has a ton of issues when it comes to functionality.
It will certainly be interesting to see another player in the digital assistant space, though some are already a little frustrated with the fragmentation, especially when it comes to support for smart home tech. After all, just because a product works with Apple’s HomeKit and Google Assistant, that doesn’t mean it’ll work with Bixby and Alexa too. Plenty of products only really work within one ecosystem too — meaning if you don’t use that ecosystem of products, you have to look elsewhere.
Details are still pretty slim when it comes to the digital assistant. We don’t yet know what it will be called, nor do we have any idea when it will launch. Based on the comments from Yu, however, it seems like the assistant may not be that far off from being a reality.
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