So-called “smart displays”, aka smart speakers with screens, may not exactly feel like the industry’s next big thing right now, but a large number of important companies have decided to tackle the concept early on just in case. Amazon was the trendsetter almost a year ago, followed by Lenovo, JBL and LG, while Facebook reportedly had to delay its own plans to join the fledgling market to deal with data breaches and privacy scandals.
Interestingly enough, although Google expanded its Home product family to include both entry-level and ultra-high-end models last year, the search giant took a backseat in the rise of its Smart Display platform. That’s not a completely unusual strategy for a company that likes to combine hardware partnerships with own-brand product releases, often on separate timelines.
As such, it should come as no big surprise to hear Vice President of Product Management Rishi Chandra pretty much confirm Big G’s intentions of launching its own display-sporting virtual assistant device… eventually. Chandra doesn’t spell that out for us, merely stating this is an “emerging category”, and his company is “not saying we are not going to do it.”
A vague double negative is truly the closest we can come to an official confirmation at this point, considering the earliest Google’s mysterious in-house Smart Display could break cover is probably in a little over a month. A formal announcement alongside that equally cryptic mid-range Pixel phone in July or August, or an even later launch together with the Pixel 3 duo are more likely.