Google is partnering with US retail giant Walmart to offer voice ordering through the Google Assistant.
In an apparent effort to challenge the integrated Amazon shopping experience boasted by the Alexa Assistant, customers in the US will now be able to perform their grocery shop. Starting this month, Walmart customers can just say “Hey Google, talk to Walmart,” and proceed to add items to their shopping cart.
Once the accounts are linked, customers will be able to add basic items like “milk” to their basket, with Walmart knowing from previous orders that what they really want is “1 gallon of 1% Great Value organic milk.”
The new feature works across the Google Assistant devices like Home speakers and Home Hub smart displays, as well as Android and iOS smartphones.
Related: Google Assistant vs Alexa
In a blog post on Tuesday, Walmart wrote: “We know when using voice technology, customers like to add items to their cart one at a time over a few days – not complete their shopping for the week all at once. So, this capability aligns with the way customers shop.
“It’s cross-platform, which means customers can use any device utilizing Google Assistant, and allows for items to go directly to a customer’s shopping cart, making this capability one of a kind. We’re kicking off the work with Google, adding others to the mix as time goes on.”
Both companies will hope this feature ends the Amazon/Alexa stranglehold on shopping with a personal assistant. Amazon has perfected it in-house, so it’ll be interesting to see how the Walmart/Google link-up plays out over the next few months.
Unfortunately, given Walmart is a US-based supermarket chain, there’s no opportunity for Brits to jump aboard yet. However, it’s plausible UK shoppers might get access to a similar feature at some point through the Asda chain, which is owned by Walmart.
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