LG Electronics is soon set to integrate Amazon’s artificial intelligence (AI) assistant Alexa into its lineup of smart home appliances, the South Korean consumer electronics manufacturer said on Sunday, as reported by local media. The Seoul-based tech giant will demonstrate the capabilities of its Alexa-powered devices at this year’s iteration of IFA, a Berlin, Germany-based trade show which is scheduled to start on Friday, September 1. The company’s demonstration will involve the Amazon Echo speaker working in conjunction with one or several LG-made Internet of Things (IoT) devices, presumably showing how users will be able to control these appliances by issuing voice commands to Amazon’s digital companion.
The move comes shortly after the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) implemented support for the Google Assistant into portions of its product lineup, a feature that LG announced three months ago. It’s currently unclear when exactly will LG’s IoT support for Alexa be introduced on a global level, though the rollout of the functionality will presumably commence before the end of the year. All of LG’s products that presently support the Google Assistant will also soon work with Amazon’s AI service, with the list of compatible devices including refrigerators, air conditioners, ovens, robot cleaners, washing machines, and drying machines. The firm said that its support for Alexa is meant to provide consumers who opt for LG-made products with more choices in regards to how they control their smart appliances, adding that its IoT ecosystem will continue expanding in the future but without providing more details on the matter.
Despite its decision to offer native Alexa integration in its home appliances, LG is still strengthening its ties with Google, one of Amazon’s largest competitors in the consumer-oriented AI segment, with the two reportedly planning to collaborate on the introduction of the Korean version of the Google Assistant which is said to debut on the LG V30, the firm’s upcoming Android flagship which will be showcased at IFA and is expected to be commercially available by the end of September. The South Korean OEM is also thought to be manufacturing the Pixel XL 2, Google’s next-generation Android phablet which the company is rumored to announce in early October alongside the Pixel 2 which is likely produced by HTC.