Amazon and Google May Be Adding Voice Calls to Their Smart Home Speakers

According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, Amazon and Google are currently considering adding voice call functionality to their smart home speakers, namely the Echo and Home, respectively. It’s unclear exactly how the function would work, but it’s expected that Google will likely tie the Home into Google Voice or Project Fi, while Amazon will focus on adding either a dedicated phone number to the Echo or allowing users to connect their current phone number to the device for call forwarding or speaker calls.

Of course, with the arrival of voice calls on a speaker-based system, some consequences are bound to pop up. Specifically, only speaker calls are expected to be placed with the devices rather asking your Echo or Home to place a call and have it transfer to your phone. This could become a pretty big inconvenience for folks who don’t want everyone to hear their conversations so it’ll be interesting to see how Amazon and Google tackle this.

As is the case with major features like this, it’s not expected that voice calls on the Echo or Home will arrive anytime soon. Sure, there’s a possibility that the function will launch sometime this year, but don’t get your hopes up.