JBL's next soundbar doubles as an Android TV box

Theresa Obrien
May 8, 2018

Speaking of safety, Android Auto is offering developers new templates that allow them to cut back on the number of taps required when using apps on Android's automobile platform. In Google's words, "Android Things is Google's managed OS that enables you to build and maintain Internet of Things devices at scale". It also now supports System-on-Modules (SoMs) based on the NXP i.MX8M, Qualcomm SDA212, Qualcomm SDA624, and MediaTek MT8516 (some pictured above).

From the time Apple unveiled its initial school-focused I pad past month, Google is under some pressure to announce a rival item. Late last week the company sent out invitations to a June 6 event in San Francisco where it's widely believed to be showing a product similar to the one JBL announced today. It would be great if Google announced that a unified Assistant experience was coming to all of its devices, with syncing and continuity throughout all of them.

Google said it has worked closely with hardware partners to launch the first wave of the Android Things-powered products. Google Assistant will take over voice recognition, with its natural-language capabilities allowing users to do everything from change climate settings to turning your house lights on during the commute home - the same things you can do with Assistant on your phone. You can sign up to participate here. Companies interested in collaborating on Android Things implementations directly with Google are being encouraged to get in touch with the firm directly through a contact form available through the banner below, though space is limited and only the most innovative and thought-out use cases are likely to be accepted.

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Google has been working with developers and improving Android Things with the help of feedback. That incorporation makes it easier for developers as they can use the same tools they use to build Android apps and devices.

Google has named its own IoT platform Android Things 1.0 and as you might have guessed, it's an Android-based platform. Weave is a cross-platform language that lets devices talk to each other, the cloud, and your phone - one command acts the same to all smart devices. If you try to do that now, Assistant doesn't know how to handle it and just sends you to a Google search. Some have referred to this as Material Design 2.0 and while it may not actually carry that name, we are expecting to see some changes to the Material Design guidelines made official. Android Things will compete with Amazon's Greengrass system and Microsoft's Windows IoT.

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