TV provider Dish is more tightly integrating its Hopper line of receivers with Google Assistant by integrating the smart assistant directly into its set-top boxes. The company was already working with Google on a voice-controlled experience, having announced a year ago at CES that it would allow customers to control their Dish TV experience using Google Assistant.
However, in that case, Dish customers had to first pair their Hopper devices with an existing Google Assistant device in their home. This new development, announced today at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, is integrating the Google Assistant technology directly into the Hopper hardware itself.
That means Dish subscribers will be able to use their Dish voice remote to talk to Google Assistant in order to control their Dish TV. They can also search for TV content by channel, title, actor or genre.
Dish TV viewers will be able to do other things with Google Assistant, too — like check the weather, get news updates, display photos and control their other connected devices around the home.The new feature, the company hopes, will make Dish’s TV service more compelling in a day and age where many consumers are cutting the cord with pay TV and turning to streaming media devices like Apple TV, Fire TV, Android TV and Roku — all of which now have their own voice control and voice search capabilities.
Dish isn’t only working with Google for voice control. In fact, it was one of the first to leverage Amazon Alexa for hands-free voice control of its Hopper and Wally receivers back in 2017. However, the Alexa integration was limited to pairing the Dish receiver with Alexa through an Alexa skill.