If you have ever thought to yourself, “I’d love to try Google Home, but I don’t want to spend $129,” I have some good news for you.
If you want to put about 90 minutes of assembly time into it, you can purchase a working Google Home-like speaker box for $35. At this price, you are looking at a quarter of the cost of an official Google Home unit.
This is all part of the official Google AIY Project and, if you go to their official landing page for it (aiyprojects.withgoogle.com), you can see the entire how-to guide. Fortunately, there’s no soldering or anything here that takes much more than a screwdriver.
You’ll additionally need an SD Card, scotch tape, and a Raspberry Pi. Fortunately, the folks selling the AIY kit are generally bundling it right along with the purchase of a Raspberry Pi.
Micro Center, for instance, sells the whole bundle for $35. $34.99 for a Raspberry Pi, and $0.01 for the AIY kit. I’d image others will follow suit as well.
Still In Pre-Order Status
As of the writing of this article, the whole kit is still awaiting release. From the looks of it, we’ll see it start shipping out around the end of October. We’ll also likely see more retailers selling the kit as well, so it may be worth waiting until then before shopping around.
Though I already own a Google Home, I must say I’m very interested in this. For one, I’ve wanted a reason to purchase and tinker with a Raspberry Pi. This may be just the reason I’ve needed.
Why This Matters
In the grand scope of all things Google Assistant, this step represents something pretty significant. Instead of being a closed network of devices running Google Assistant, Google is clearly communicating its desire for any and everyone to take the Assistant and utilize its power.
With Assistant-powered headphones and speakers starting to show up, the future of products with Google Assistant looks only to be enlarging as time goes on. When you get things like this AIY project into the hands of creative, open-minded people, there’s no telling what new ways we’ll see Assitant getting leveraged.