We have the Phone and the Camera. What’s next from Andy Rubin’s Essential start-up? The Home. Not a house, obviously, but a device that acts as a hub for your smart home, like Echo and Google Home do #objectmagic
While the Essential Phone was carefully promoted by Rubin this week, specs and all, the Home gave us the impression it was still very much an idea. Only renders were shown to the press, renders that revealed a round device with a touchscreen that lights up when you pose a question, give it a tap or even cast a glance that way.
When it does come out, who will you be talking to? Rubin has talked about a smart assistant that can suggest certain behaviors by learning more about you as time passes. This would be done by employing machine learning, if you ask us. On the other hand, the device will run Ambient OS, a operating system, that will make other companies’ virtual assistants compatible, so you’re probably going to be able to talk to Siri, Alexa, Cortana or Google Assistant, if you’re so inclined.
Like any other home assistant, this one from Essential will enable you to control various machines from one place. With one command, you’ll dim the lights, set timers, get answers to burning questions and control music playlists. According to a Wired report, the system should work seamlessly with HomeKit, Nest and others, too.
Last, but not least, Essential Home is decidedly pro keeping the user’s data truly private. Therefore, it does all its processing locally, on the device, instead of using the cloud. Even with that promise, the team is going to have a rough time convincing users to invest in a device and an ecosystem that surged practically overnight. Especially since they come from a new start-up, albeit supervised by Andy Rubin.