JBL’s New Speakers: Perfectly Sync Alexa and Google Assistant for Seamless Playtime

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JBL’s New Authentics Speaker Range: A Game-Changer for Voice Assistants

JBL’s New Authentics Speaker Range: A Game-Changer for Voice Assistants

Retro-Inspired Design and Impressive Functionality

JBL is proud to introduce its new Authentics speaker range. These speakers boast a retro-inspired design reminiscent of JBL’s iconic L-100 speakers from the 1970s. Alongside their aesthetically pleasing look, these speakers deliver exceptional sound quality and support a wide range of streaming services and technologies. However, the most exciting feature of these speakers is their ability to run Google Assistant and Alexa simultaneously, listening for each wake word. This is a groundbreaking advancement that sets JBL’s new speaker range apart from the competition.

The Impressive Features of the Authentics Speakers

  • Equipped with a handle for easy portability
  • Physical controls for adjusting treble and bass levels
  • Comes in three models: Authentics 200, Authentics 300, and Authentics 500
  • Authentics 300 is the only battery-powered option, providing up to 8 hours of playback

Alexa and Google Assistant Working Together

During a demonstration of the JBL Authentics 300, it was apparent that Alexa and Google Assistant can coexist and work well together. However, there were some limitations and compatibility issues when using more specific voice commands. With a bit of trial and error, users can find ways to optimize the performance of both voice assistants.

Thoughtfully Designed with a Retro Touch

In addition to their impressive voice assistant capabilities, the Authentics speakers have a sleek design with a front grill texture reminiscent of JBL’s classic speakers. The speakers come with convenient physical bass and treble controls. They also feature a programmable “moment” button that allows users to set their preferred playlist or radio station for quick access. The speakers are available in black, with the possibility of additional colors in the future.

Wide Connectivity and Future Upgrades

The Authentics speakers offer various connectivity options, including Bluetooth, a 3.5mm aux input, and Ethernet for wired internet. They also support popular streaming services like AirPlay, Spotify Connect, and Chromecast built-in. Future firmware updates will enable Tidal Connect compatibility and the ability to pair multiple JBL speakers for stereo and multi-channel surround sound setups.

Impressive Sound Quality and Sustainability

Despite being evaluated in a demonstration setting, the Authentics speakers showcased their powerful sound capabilities. From the compact Authentics 200 to the high-end Authentics 500 with Dolby Atmos support, these speakers offer audio experiences that exceed expectations. They are also environmentally conscious, utilizing recycled materials in their construction and featuring a replaceable battery.

The Future of Simultaneous Voice Assistants

While JBL’s new speakers provide simultaneous access to both Google Assistant and Alexa, it is unclear if this feature will be implemented in future models. Google and Amazon consider this an experiment to gauge consumer demand and feedback.

Photography by Jon Porter / The Verge

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