Google Home will be released later this year

Google has unveiled a voice-controlled, AI-powered robot assistant that can be ordered to turn the lights down, play music or order a taxi.

Google Home, a pint-sized speaker and microphone combination, is designed to sit in a room and respond to its owner's every command, from answering questions to checking the weather.

Google's Mario Queiroz unveils Home

The device is similar to the Amazon Echo, which was released in the US in 2014.

By always listening, Google Home can respond to any queries just by users saying "OK Google" and issuing a command, rather than having to type a phrase into a search engine or check emails to dig out flight details.

"Computing is evolving beyond phones, and people are using it in context across many scenarios, be it in their television, be it in their car, be it something they wear on their wrist or even something much more immersive," Google's chief executive Sundar Pichai said.

Google, which unveiled Home at I/O, its annual developer conference, said it would be released later in the year.

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