Google Home is a voice-activated Echo rival

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Today at Google I/O, the search giant unveiled its Amazon Echo-baiting Home. Google Home is ostensibly a cylindrical speaker with an angled top featuring Google's iconic four colors. Far-field voice recognition allows you to issue commands to the device to control everything from music playback to look up something online.

Google's latest foray into the Internet of Things is much more than just a Wi-Fi speaker -- although it will function perfectly well in the role. Just like the voice-activated options in Android, Home can be used to set alarms and reminders, and can even be connected to other smart devices such as Nest thermostats.

The speaker grille is an interchangeable base that can be used to customize the look of your device, and project executive Mario Queiroz promises that the audio features "strong bass and clear highs". There's support for Cast technology which means Google Home can be used in conjunction with any app or service that works with Google Cast, including the likes of Spotify and Pandora.

Google hasn't released a great deal of information about Home, but a product page has been created where you can sign up to receive more details when they are available. On the page, Google offers up a succinct description of what to expect:

Always on call.

Google Home is a voice-activated home product that allows you and your family to get answers from Google, stream music, and manage everyday tasks.

While there is a focus on audio content, it is possible to cast video to a TV. Google says that with Home it wants to focus on the features that people actually find important rather than trying to match Echo and Alexa feature for feature.

At the moment we know nothing about pricing, nor when it will launch -- although it will be some time before the year is out. If you want to sign up for more information, pay a visit to the Google Home page.

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