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Who won CES 2019: Amazon or Google?



  google-booth-ces-2019-7609

Google and Amazon made it on CES.


James Martin / CNET

This week at CES, the world's largest tech show, most of the hype focused on two companies: Google and Amazon . It's becoming an annual tradition for the two tech titans who travel to Las Vegas in January to brave the desert and see who can win the most in the war for their smart home, smart car and smartphone ,

In one corner, it's Alexa, the voice assistant that Amazon 2014 used as a pioneer in the smart speaker market. Alexa, who introduced the company into the intelligent echo speaker for the first time, is now a household name.

In the other corner of the Google Assistant, a contender who came into the fight two years later. The wizard runs the search giant's Google Home products and is triggered by the phrase "Hey Google."

Even before the show started, both companies were already pounding in the chest. Last week, Amazon announced that more than 100 million Alexa devices were sold . Not to be outdone, Google said Monday that the assistant is expected to be installed by the end of the month in [1] billion devices . But none of the characters tells the whole story. A large part of these billions of Assistant devices are, for example, Android phones, on which the software is installed by default.

  img-1627 6199999bbbbbbbbbbb-906efa080561 / img-1627.jpg "/> Amazon Alexa booth at the Sands Expo.


Ben Fox Rubin / CNET

Every company seemed to enter the CES with a different strategy. Google was cheeky and exaggerated and plastered the words "Hey Google" throughout the city. Amazon was more subtle in its approach, but endeavored to be ubiquitous on all sorts of products at the show through its partner booths, stage presentations, and plenty of "Works with Alexa" tags.

After a week in Las Vegas During the entire campaign, CNET reporter Ben Fox Rubin, who is responsible for Amazon, and Richard Nieva, who is responsible for Google, analyzed the implications. They talked about everything, from buzz to product announcements to funny hats. And finally, they tried to answer the question: which company won CES 2019?


Ruby: When I went to CES for the first time, it was remarkable that only a few big tech players came to the show. [19659006 Nieva: I agree. Samsung has always made a lot of noise here, but Google, Amazon and Apple stuck to their own events. Three years ago, the companies I covered had so little presence here that my biggest interview was not with a senior executive, but with an ex-Mafia hitman

Rubin: me let's say, it's really adorable that Google has decided to appear at CES in the last two years.

Nieva: Right. In the past few years, Google was somehow on the sidelines, while his partners like LG and HTC made all announcements. It all changed when Google launched the wizard in 2016. Then, last year, oh man, everything went off. And this year they became even larger . I asked Google how much money they spent on marketing at CES and did not get an answer. This year, their stand was like a block outside the Las Vegas Convention Center, and included a crazy ride through a small world.

  google-booth-google-ride-ces-2019-8112

Google built a "It's a little world" style ride his booth


James Martin / CNET

Ruby: But do you think a huge stand is one reason to give a company the crown for the best of CES? That's just a question of how much money you're willing to spend. For Amazon, they had a handful of smaller stalls than Google, but they seemed to be everywhere, including the automotive LVCC and the Sands Expo floor. Not that it should be a factor this year, but considering who has "won" CES in the last two years, the clear winner was Amazon, thanks to his Alexa dominance.

Nieva: If we Google talked about "everywhere", a whole army of people, all dressed in white and wearing funny hats anchored in cabins above the show floor. You can not walk in the convention center or at the Sands Expo without seeing one of these men.

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Ruby: Good enough. What about the actual technology? Amazon announced a series of new Alexa partnerships including the Lenovo Smart Tab tablet / smart display, Ford's new car infotainment system and even the Vuzix smart goggles. Next to Alexa, Ring's House Security Team has unveiled a new smart entry-level camera

for residential units and motion-activated outdoor lighting. And Key by Amazon, the company's in-home delivery and keyless entry service, announced in-garage delivery and key for business.

Nieva: Behind Google's marketing flash was substance, too. The company announced one of the most intriguing features they have ever developed for the wizard: an interpreter mode that translates conversations in real time. It aims to do more than just turn on your lights – it's an interesting project for engineering and natural language. Aside from that, Google also announced hardware manufactured by the company's partners. There is the Lenovo Smart Clock (very similar to the Echo Spot) and the KitchenAid Smart Display . It's also worth noting that some of the products on the show will work with both assistants – such as Sonos Speakers and KitchenAid Smart Oven + – so be sure to keep up this trend ,

Ruby: Let's interject some other players. I was surprised to see Apple causing a sensation at CES, as they are usually "too cool" to go to the show. It had underpinned other tech companies with a big ad that emphasized their focus on data protection – suggesting that others do not work so well there. It also gave LG and Vizio access to AirPlay and HomeKit technology and brought iTunes to Samsung's new smart TVs.

Nieva: Yup, Apple opposite. This ad was played well. Samsung also made sure his digital assistant, Bixby, became attentive, and the company sought to bring Bixby to its televisions, refrigerators, washers, air conditioners, telephones, and speakers. In addition, Samsung unveiled four new robots including the Samsung Bot Care, which allows you to track your vital signs. At the end of the show, the company unveiled as their next big phone launch will take place, which helps keep them ahead of many CES participants.

Ruby: I think they exceeded expectations at CES, but Google and Amazon stayed as we expected the first dogs.

Nieva: Agreed. Who knows how long Google and Amazon will decide to focus these resources on CES, but for the moment they think it's worth it.

Ruby: OK, who won the CES, Rich – was it Google or Amazon?

Nieva: I think Google needs it this year. If they chose it for no other reason, they wanted to pull out all the stops. They clearly invested a lot of money. Maybe Amazon will take it next year.

Ruby: Yes, this year it's Google. Now let's see what these two will do about 2019 to sustain the fight for food.

CES 2019: All CNET reports on the biggest tech show of the year.

Galaxy S10 launch date confirmed : Tune on February 20 for Samsung's unpacked event.


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