OV Breaks Down the Walled Gardens That Trap Virtual Assistants

OV Breaks Down the Walled Gardens That Trap Virtual Assistants

There’s an interesting debate shaping up over whether consumers want to use one virtual assistant like Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri or Google Assistant across all their devices, or have access to multiple virtual helpers. OV is a wearable assistant that bridges the divide between the two camps, and I believe that’s the approach more manufacturers will take.

Consider the still-unreleased Essential Home, which promises full compatibility with Siri, Alexa, Google’s Assistant, and any other virtual assistant that may hit the market.

Credit: TheVerge

To date, connected home products like Amazon’s Echo lineup, Apple’s new HomePod and Google Home only offer each company’s virtual assistant. But Essential founder Andy Rubin (who also has the distinction of having co-founded Android) believes that’s not what consumers want. During a recent interview with recode’s Walt Mossberg he said only allowing one assistant on a device is the wrong strategy.

Credit: recode

“All of these [companies] have ecosystem envy and want to create their own ecosystem,” he added. “But consumers don’t want just Samsung stuff in their house. They want diversity.”

The mobile device sector is already moving in that direction. Google and Amazon have released Assistant and Alexa apps, respectively, that work on the iPhone as well as all Android phones. Curiously, Essential’s new smartphone only ships with Google Assistant, but as I mentioned in my last post, HTC’s new smartphone offers both Assistant and full integration with Assistant and Alexa.

One argument for building connected devices with only one virtual assistant is that it ensures compatibility with apps and other systems like home theater receivers, smart lighting systems, appliances, etc. Consumers who carry the iPhone and regularly use Siri may want to replicate that experience around the house with the Apple HomePod.

But what about the users who don’t want to build a walled garden?

Let’s say you like to use the Google Keep app on your Android phone for your shopping and to-do lists, but use Alexa to control smart lighting systems and other connected home devices. OV provides seamless access to both, which is great for when you’re out of range of your Echo.  

Consider this scenario: You’re at the office. You can access Siri or Assistant on your phone and ask it to add an item to your shopping list, or set a reminder. But Amazon’s Alexa smartphone app does not accept voice commands. If you want Alexa to turn on your lights at home and start playing music, you have to wait until you walk in the door so your Echo can hear your commands.

OV overcomes that obstacle by giving you full access to Alexa, Siri and Assistant. Simply press the button on the earbud to issue a command to Siri or Assistant, or press the Alexa button to talk to Alexa. You don’t have to look at your phone’s screen, or even pull it out of your pocket.

To learn more about how OV not only creates a virtual team of assistants available at your disposal 24/7, but also provides the highest quality audio for enjoying all forms of audio content and phone calls, visit http://onvocal.com/ov. When you’re ready to purchase a set, click on the Buy Now button below.