With CES happening at the start of January in Las Vegas, LG is getting its announcements in early, trailing a number of new speakers. The company's 2018 audio line-up is led by the ThinQ Speaker, a Google Home-esque smart speaker with Google Assistant on board.
LG has partnered with Google on the speaker, so expect the Google Assistant integration to be well executed. As on the Google Home, you'll be able to get weather updates, play music, check your calendar, look up locations and more, all using your voice. You'll also be able to control a host of LG smart home products using the speaker, too.
Where the new ThinQ Speaker might have the edge is with its audio capabilities. LG is promising "high-quality sound" including support for lossless audio and technology from its newly inked partnership deal with hi-fi specialists Meridian Audio. Right now we don't have many details on the precise audio specs, or the price, or the availability of the speaker, but all that information should arrive at CES.
Earlier this year LG made its smart home ecosystem compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, and it seems as though most major manufacturers – including Sonos – will try and support both these smart digital assistants as far as possible. For now though, the ThinQ Speaker looks to be exclusively using Google's option.
LG has also previewed a number of other audio products today, without the smart features, including a 500 W SK10Y soundbar offering support for Dolby Atmos, 5.1.2 channel sound, and Google's Chromecast standard. Again, Meridian Audio technology is built in, so a quality audio experience should be guaranteed – though we'll wait until we hear it before passing judgment.
At CES we'll also be seeing some portable "PK" Bluetooth speakers from LG, with support for 24-bit audio streaming, flashing lights, convenient grips, and a rugged design. Larger, karaoke-style speakers are on the way,too, designed to add some fun to your next party with DJ and lighting features, as well as powerful audio. We'll get more details on all of this gear once CES starts at the beginning of January.
While the ThinQ branding has been around LG products for several years, it's been mostly restricted to large appliances like fridges and washing machines. Now the South Korean company looks committed to launching a host of smaller gadgets too, with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa along the for the ride.
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