JBL makes some killer portable speakers and I'm a big fan of its affordable, stylish, and stellar sounding product lineup. This morning, JBL announced that its latest generation of products is getting even a little better. As of today, JBL's current gen speakers will support Google Now voice integration.
The Flip 3, Charge 3, Xtreme, and Pulse 2 are all compatible with the new update (sorry Clip 2 owners, no support for you). To add the feature, all you need to do is download or update the JBL Connect app on your Android device. Once updated, simply long press the play/pause button on your speaker, wait for the ping, and then state your command.
I tried this out for myself on the JBL Pulse 2 and can confirm that the feature works just as advertised. Press button, hear ping, ask question, get answer. It even works while music is playing. Music pauses when you hit the button allowing you to make your query and resumes automatically when you finish. Niftelicious.
For those of you who like phones with the stamp of the forbidden fruit, you'll be happy to know that the update also adds Siri integration.
New speakers released by JBL from this point forward will have Google Now and Siri baked in right from the start. Want more info? Check out the press release below for the full scoop.
JBL® Portable Speakers Come to Life with Siri and Google Now Voice Integration
New JBL Firmware update enabling voice integration for Xtreme, Pulse 2, Charge 3 and Flip 3
IFA 2016, BERLIN – HARMAN International Industries, Incorporated (NYSE:HAR), the premier connected technologies company for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, today announced Siri and Google Now voice integration for the JBL Xtreme, Pulse 2, Charge 3 and Flip 3 speakers. This dynamic feature unlocks the ability to voice control your favorite music, without the need to reach for a phone or tablet.
Music lovers can activate the voice assistant features by simply pressing the ‘Multifunction Button’ (the speaker’s Play/Pause button turns into a voice activation button) on their JBL portable device. By activating Siri or Google Now’s push-to-talk, users have the convenience to change the song, make a call or check the weather report - all by speaking to JBL.
This new voice integration feature will allow users to take their listening experience to a whole new level. If you’re listening to a JBL portable speaker while shooting hoops or relaxing in the pool, there’s no longer any need to stop the fun and scramble to find your phone to switch songs,” said Andy Tsui, Senior Director, Smart Audio & Accessories BU Leader, HARMAN. “We’re excited for our portable speakers to play a bigger and better role in everyday life for JBL music aficionados.”
Future JBL portable speakers will have Siri and Google Now voice integration already embedded, giving listeners the ability to request a specific song or skip a track just by speaking those commands. For the current JBL portable speaker owners, they can simply install the firmware update via the JBL CONNECT APP, which is available through the iOS® and Android™ app stores. Availability of this new feature will be available in September 2016.