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Google Home Takes A Leaf Out Of Amazon Echo's Book

By Grace Anilado , Apr 21, 2017 04:30 AM EDT
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The search giant has added a similar function to Google Home as Amazon Echo. The smart speaker can now support up to six user accounts, with a catch. (Photo : Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

One feature that makes Amazon Echo so appealing to smart speaker enthusiasts is its ability to let users switch between profiles. But it looks like the device is no longer alone in that regard. Because its toughest competition in the field, Google Home, has introduced a similar feature too.

Months after its launch in November 2016, the search giant's own take on what a smart speaker should be got updated. Users had been aching for multi-account support just like Amazon Echo and now they have gotten their wish. Google Home now allows for the connection of up to six accounts.

Every user who wants to link their account with the Google Assistant will be walked through a process via the device's app. This is so that Google Home can learn to recognize a user's voice when it is given a command, CNet writes. And although the device can support only six accounts, voices not registered into the system can still ask it to do other things like search for information or adjust smart home appliances' settings.

With the addition of this new feature, Google Home is right at Amazon Echo's tail. It can now pull up information and data that is relevant to a particular person just by recognizing their voice. This means that people won't have to hear their housemate's schedule of appointments anymore. It also gives an edge over its rival that cannot tell between different voices.

But there's a catch. True, the smart speaker's neural network can store and easily identify a registered user's voice. However, if somebody has voice characteristics similar to them, then they may be able to access others' information, The Verge points out.

Furthermore, though Google Home now has this added function, there is still one thing it cannot do. It still does not support differentiation between personal and work accounts per user.

Nevertheless, the battle between Google and Amazon is still heating up. Currently, Alexa has over 10,000 skills in its repertoire. Meanwhile, Home is continuing to expand compatibility with other smart home platforms.

Google's smart speaker users living in the U.S. can use the multi-account feature already. But those in the UK will have to wait several months for their devices to be able to do the same thing.

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