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LG Partners With Google On High-End Speaker

LG Electronics has announced a new line of speakers, including one that will have the Google Assistant built in, slated for launch at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2018. CES is an annual tech conference held in Las Vegas each January.

In a press release, Thursday (Dec. 28) LG said the LG ThinQ Speaker will be its first premium smart speaker powered by artificial intelligence (AI). It will not only produce high-quality sound but also come enabled with Google’s AI-powered voice-activated assistant.

LG said it chose to team up with Google to ensure the LG ThinQ delivers all the conveniences of a digital voice-activated assistant as well as quality sound. The company noted the LG ThinQ Speaker isn’t only a smart companion, but also a personalized voice-activated interface for LG’s smart home appliances. The LG ThinQ Speaker can be set to turn on an LG appliance with the spoken command, “OK Google, talk to LG, turn on the air purifier.”

“Sound technology has come a long way since LG introduced the first radio to Korean consumers almost 60 years ago,” said Seo Young-jae, head of the convergence audio and video business division of LG’s Home Entertainment Company, in the press release. “At this year’s CES, I’m confident audiences will be impressed with the amount of technology we’ve introduced into our audio products without compromising on sound quality.”

LG smart speakers aren’t the only items boasting integration with the Google Assistant. In late November, navigation app Waze, which is owned by Google’s parent company Alphabet, announced a new hands-free capability that promises to work just like the Google Assistant. According to news from Mashable, this capability is part of a suite of new features included in what Waze calls “one of its biggest updates ever.”

The “Talk to Waze” feature expands on the app’s limited voice control capabilities, allowing users to verbally set their routes, preview the navigation, send traffic reports and add stops to their journeys. To control the app via voice, users simply have to say the wake phrase, “Okay, Waze.”

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