Author Topic: TBG's Smart Home Buyer's Guide  (Read 998 times)

Ari Altman

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TBG's Smart Home Buyer's Guide
« on: September 15, 2016, 11:31:20 AM »
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Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's Smart Home Buyer's Guide
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2017, 11:50:18 AM »
The Smart Home Buyer's  Guide has been updated for Summer 2017. Lots of new tech to make your home safer and more comfortable!

bensrichards

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Re: TBG's Smart Home Buyer's Guide
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2017, 09:02:16 AM »
Hey Ari,

Just had a chance to scroll through the updated smart home buyer's guide. My wife and I want to get a smart speaker for our house this holiday season. I was wondering if you could give me some insight into why you chose the Echo variety over the Google Home.

I've been digging through articles and reviews for both, as well as the manufacturer product pages, and I'm not seeing a ton of significant differences.

In our house we have a Nest thermostat, a first gen. Wink Hub, a handful of GE Link connected lightbulbs, a Logitech Harmony hub, a Netatmo weather station, and a Haiku smart fan. We're pretty heavily committed to gmail and google calendar. We use a Roku stick to access streaming content. I can pretty much guarantee we won't be trying to listen to music over the smart speaker, so sound quality isn't a big issue for us.

Like I said at the get go, I'd be really interested to hear your thoughts on Google Home versus Echo.

-Ben

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's Smart Home Buyer's Guide
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2017, 09:19:03 AM »
Hey Ari,

Just had a chance to scroll through the updated smart home buyer's guide. My wife and I want to get a smart speaker for our house this holiday season. I was wondering if you could give me some insight into why you chose the Echo variety over the Google Home.

I've been digging through articles and reviews for both, as well as the manufacturer product pages, and I'm not seeing a ton of significant differences.

In our house we have a Nest thermostat, a first gen. Wink Hub, a handful of GE Link connected lightbulbs, a Logitech Harmony hub, a Netatmo weather station, and a Haiku smart fan. We're pretty heavily committed to gmail and google calendar. We use a Roku stick to access streaming content. I can pretty much guarantee we won't be trying to listen to music over the smart speaker, so sound quality isn't a big issue for us.

Like I said at the get go, I'd be really interested to hear your thoughts on Google Home versus Echo.

-Ben

Hey again Ben!

I have a pretty strong opinion about this, and it's based on lots of testing of both the Google Home Assistant and every Amazon Echo device released thus far, other than the brand-new Echo and Echo Plus. Here's the deal: Google is simply following Amazon's lead here, and simply hasn't done anything innovative at all in the Smart speaker market. It rolls out features 3-4 months after Amazon announces them, and never introduces anything novel. More importantly, there are simply an amazing number of "Skills" for the Amazon Echo, while far fewer developers and manufacturers are working on Google Home. And based on the product list you provided, you're really going to be amazed at how much an Echo will add to your Smart Home build out.

Now, Google does have one advantage: its voice recognition is better. That's simply not even a question. It can hear you with more background noise, and it can do a better job understanding what you're saying. Amazon is actually getting better lately, but it has a long way to go. Even so, I'd go with the Echo every time. It's just a more complete ecosystem.

Want to see voice control in action? Check out the Ion Robot 750 vacuum review, published yesterday, which includes a video of it responding to voice commands!

By the way, the Echo can tap into your Gmail and Google calendar, so that's not an issue at all in terms of choosing one or the other.

Oh, as long as you're here in the forum, don't forget to sign up for the holiday prize drawing!