We talked a few months ago about the fact that Google looked to be going all in at CES this year, and from the early reports we’re seeing from folks already on the ground in Las Vegas, Google has shown up in a much bigger way than we previously expected.
While we aren’t expecting anything new on the hardware front – apart from maybe getting to see the Core i7 Pixelbook in the flesh – we are expecting Google’s presence to be felt throughout the show this year. For a company that generally has a very low-key presence at the first major tech show of the year, Google seems to be completely upending it’s normal strategy.
Take a look at some of the photos from CES already showing up below. Google is at CES 2018 in a MAJOR way. Big credit to Engadget and Dieter Bohn (@backlon) for some of these initial looks from Las Vegas!
From what we’re seeing here, Google will be visible on the monorail that circles the convention center and with a massive setup right out front as people arrive. Included in the structure is a massive slide and some sort of large ball game. No idea what those will be, but it could be fun!
We fully expect to see Google Assistant showing up in nearly every corner of the show this year, but this level of presence from Google is a bit stunning. Until the show actually opens this week and we get to spend some time in Google’s area, we can’t be for sure that there isn’t any new hardware to showcase.
Don’t hold your breath, though.
It is old news to say that Google is in a fierce competition with Amazon’s Alexa for smart home control. Since Google I/O in 2016 and the launch of the original Pixel and Pixel XL, Google has been pretty clear with its intentions for Google Assistant.
According to Engadget, Google has sold a Google Home Mini every second since it launched. Every. Second. That is a startling statistic and, paired with the fact that Google Assistant is now on almost every Android device on the planet, Google Assistant’s footprint is spreading rapidly.
The war is far from over, however, as Amazon’s Alexa still holds a lead when we talk about hardware sold. Google’s overwhelming presence at CES indicates one thing and one thing only in my eyes: The momentum and dedication behind Google Assistant hasn’t waned one bit.
There are tons of naysayers and fans alike for the virtual assistant, but one thing that can’t be overstated is Google’s long-term commitment to making the Assistant the absolute best AI Assistant avialable. As they continue that march, marketing and PR will be clutch, and this extensive showing at CES – in light of this clear focus from Google – becomes way less surprising when all this is considered.
One More Thing
Re-reading the post from The Keyword (Google’s Blog) as I was putting this article together, I did run across an interesting sentence or two. Take a look:
If you’re at CES, stop by the Google Assistant Playground (Central Plaza-21) to check out some of our new integrations, devices, and the newest ways you can use your Assistant.
Who knows? Maybe we are in for a treat or two!