Google To Fund Digital Assistant Startups

The number of connections to Google’s Assistant has grown substantially and now the search giant is opening an investment program to advance digital assistance even further.

The Google Assistant can now connect with more than 5,000 smart home devices, an increase from 1,500 in January, including every major device brand, according to a company announcement. Devices it can connect to include thermostats, security systems, lights, plugs, dryers, doorbells, dishwashers, fans, locks, heaters and refrigerators, among others.

“Millions of people already have access to the Assistant on smart TVs powered by Android TV, and we're still seeing tremendous growth,” stated Michele Turner, director, smart home ecosystem at Google.

Google also announced that it plans to fund early-stage startups to advance what digital assistants can do. The new program comprises investment capital for startups, advice from Google engineers and product managers, Google partnership programs to provide early access to upcoming features and promotional support through Google marketing channels.

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