Google Assistant SDK now available to device manufacturers

Google Assistant SDK now available to device manufacturers
Google has made an announcement to bring Google Assistant to more developers – the Google Assistant software development kit (SDK) which third-party developers may use to run the virtual assistant on their hardware prototypes.

According to Google, the SDK will provide “the full Google Assistant experience” on any device. With the Actions on Google API launched last year, third-party developers can now create their own voice commands for local hardware devices.

Before the announcement, only certain devices running the Android system are allowed to have built-in Google Assistant, such as Google Pixel and Google Home.

The Google Assistant SDK includes a gRPC API, a Python open source client which handles authentication and access to the API, samples and documentation. Developers can use the SDK to process a spoken query via the Google Assistant service and receive an audio response.

The Google Assistant is still in preview, which means many features are still under development, including hotword support and companion app integration. Google says while the SDK is ideal for prototyping on Raspberry Pi devices, it also supports many other platforms.

This does not mean that any manufacturers may release a commercial product with Google Assistant built-in without Google’s agreement. In the announcement, the company suggests that manufacturers interested in building commercial products with Google Assistant “reach out and contact us.”

The Google Assistant launch is similar to the Google Cast model which allows users to broadcast content to TVs and speakers without using a Google hardware. Alexa, Google Assistant’s direct competitor from Amazon, also has many third-party programs for developers. For manufacturers, they now have more options when implementing virtual assistant.
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