Market Insight

Google expands AI strategy with wide Google Assistant smartphone launch

February 26, 2017

Ian Fogg Ian Fogg Senior Director, Mobile & Telecoms

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Key points

  • Google announces availability of Google Assistant voice agent to Android smartphones and other devices running OS v6 and v7.
  • Expands Google Assistant from low volume Google-brand Pixel models.
  • Announcement timing ties into major technology and mobile industry trade event, Mobile World Congress (MWC).

Our analysis

AI is a key Google differentiator. It's a natural step for Google to offer Google Assistant to as many smartphones as possible because the more people that use Assistant, the smarter it will become. Machine learning-based AI benefits from enormous amounts of data for training."

AI is at the heart of Google's strategy. Google is shifting quickly to an 'AI First' strategy across all of its products.

The smartphone is the ideal training device for AI because it is highly personal and has a rich range of sensors. This launch will not only make Google smartphones smarter, it will make all of Google's services smarter. This is a strategic move for Google.

Smartphone makers need to include higher quality, and likely additional, microphones to maximize the performance of voice recognition with AI agents, like Google Assistant.

Soon there will be tens of millions more users of Google Assistant because of the enormous numbers of smartphones in use.

The just announced LG G6 smartphone has Google Assistant AI built in and LG had hoped it would be a differentiator which would help LG to counter Samsung and Apple. But with Google's new announcement almost every Android smartphone will be able to run a modern voice agent AI.

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