Small intelligent speaker review:Powerful AI technology brings rich functional experience

ByJilleen Rozario 2020-02-03 1888

From the current pattern of smart speakers, the domestic market seems to have entered the second stage of competition. From the point of view of the previous products, the giants want to show their muscles and grab the attention of users at the first time. However, with the sinking of technology and the improvement of user acceptance, the products launched by manufacturers after that obviously want to infiltrate into a wider user base on a large scale with lower prices. After showing off the muscle, the manufacturers began to think about pushing the smart speaker into thousands of households and making it a real part of the home.


Baidu released a new smart speaker on June 11: Xiaodu Smart Speaker. From the official price of 249 yuan, tasting the fresh price of 89 yuan, we can see that the entry-level low price, on the one hand, set off Baidu's own sincerity, on the other hand, it also shows that small intelligent speakers shoulder the important task of walking volume. As for its specific performance, please follow in the footsteps of our review to appreciate it.

1. The simplicity of design returns to the modeling of traditional intelligent speakers

According to the usual practice, we start from the outer packaging, which is close to the cube carton, and the inner parts include: speaker body, charger and instruction manual. The volume of the speaker box is relatively small and round, the height is about 10cm, and the weight is relatively light. The official claim that the gross weight is 590g, while the removal of the box and charger is only about 500g.

 
White and gray mix colors

The speaker body is on the shell of white frosted plastic, adding gray woven mesh cloth, this Nordic simple home style has a similar concept with the intelligent speakers on the market.

 
Buttons and Feature

At the top are four physical buttons: the add and subtract volume keys, the play button, and the on / off microphone key. Even for a speaker product, we use mobile phone APP for remote control in most cases, but the addition of physical keys provides an additional way of control to cope with unexpected situations in some scenarios.

 
Large area anti-skid rubber ring at the bottom

The bottom of a large area of rubber pad can be anti-skid, DC power charger shell is also printed with Baidu LOGO, overall workmanship and feel is quite excellent, but I think if the dark gray woven mesh cloth into light gray, so that the color contrast will be less elegant.

 
The versatile style can be easily integrated

From the overall white-based packaging to the small-degree intelligent speakers with white as the tone and gray woven mesh cloth, all reveal Baidu's clear positioning on this new intelligent speaker and better integrate into thousands of households with a minimalist style.?.

2. Uncompromising hardware professional power amplifier

 
High sensitivity and quick response to voice operation

Although the small intelligent speaker is not large in size and light in weight, it is equipped with an uncompromising hardware configuration, including a, ARM Cortex A53 quad-core processor and a three-ring full-frequency microphone array, which form the basis of the whole speech recognition system. For this reason, we also briefly tested that the awakening words of "small degree and small degree" can be accurately identified within a range of about 5 meters in a medium volume environment.

 
High-quality hardware to obtain high-quality sound quality

In terms of sound quality, there are 1.75-inch high-sensitivity full-frequency neodymium iron internal magnetic speakers with a power of more than 5W, which can basically control all types of music. due to the difference in positioning, small intelligent speakers do not add independent low-frequency units. but in the 360-degree pick-up and sound field building are in line with the product price positioning.

Special audio chip and high-power loudspeaker configuration, assisted by professional-level power amplifier and sound intelligence exclusive tuning technology, can form a 360-degree circular sound field, which is basically enough to cope with a living room with a 120-square-meter house.

3. Pay more attention to children's habits to make them more convenient to use

At a time when everyone thought that smart speakers were designed for fashion-loving young people, in Baidu's early research, it was found that children actually accounted for more than 20% of the user base. This gives Baidu a very good reason to add "child mode" to Xiaodu's smart speakers.

Can be manually switched to children's mode in App, accordingly, a small intelligent speaker will simulate the voice of children, dialogue thinking will also switch accordingly, from the usual humorous style to warm style, children's songs and fairy tales these traditional children's needs are also well completed, can accurately grab high-quality content playback, of course, there are many functions such as idiom dragon and other functions in the background reserve.

The editor feels that with this function, even if the parents are not around for the time being, the children will not be too lonely at home. Most importantly, Baidu said that the bad response rate in child mode has dropped to less than 6/10000, and this function is bound to attract many parents at a time when attention to child protection is at an all-time high.

4. Powerful AI technology and intelligent learning

Baidu, as one of the domestic artificial intelligence giants, has been deeply cultivated in the field of AI for many years. In the aspect of intelligence, Baidu's intelligent speaker is obviously completed faster.

At the press conference of Xiaodu Smart Speaker, Jing Jing, general manager of Baidu Smart Life Group, mentioned that Xiaodu will adjust the interactive content according to users' habits and have a certain "active learning ability". After a certain period of time, they can understand you more and more.

The key to understanding you more and more is that this small intelligent speaker is equipped with the latest Baidu DuerOS dialogic AI operating system, and the devices equipped with this system can enable users to realize 10 categories of functions such as audio-visual entertainment, information query, chat and leisure, life services, smart home, travel conditions, utility tools, mobile phone instructions, personal assistants, knowledge education and so on. It is the system itself that has the ability of continuous learning and self-optimization, which makes it possible for small intelligent speakers to understand you better after running-in with users.

In addition, the "geek mode" can also achieve a simple continuous conversation, which is really good for the daily voice interaction experience, rather than the tiring situation of having to re-express the entire sentence every time you speak.

This is a way closer to people's real communication, and it is also a new challenge for intelligent voice interaction teams. One of the points criticized by many users of the previous smart speakers was that they could only have one conversation at a time, and the whole conversation had to exhale several wake-up words, making the whole conversation tiring. From the name "geek mode", we can see that Baidu has positioned this function as a product similar to "cool techs".

The way to open it is also very simple. As long as you exhale the awakening word "small degree, turn on geek mode", you can start a continuous conversation. You can ask who is the author of an ancient poem, and then ask the author of another work. The whole experience is still very friendly.

5. Strong content, resources and rich skills

In addition to engineers letting speakers inject powerful AI into Xiaodu's smart stereo so that Xiaodu can understand more conversations, the cooperation between the content development team and major audible content providers still shows Baidu's advantages as a big company. As we all know, whether the intelligent speaker experience is excellent or not depends not only on the level of speech recognition and semantic understanding, but also on whether the content and resources of the back are big enough or not is the most important factor of the experience. Due to the huge resources of Baidu, small intelligent speakers can achieve very rich audio content, such as legitimate songs, audiobooks, radio news and so on.

More than 10 million authentic music resources, more than 10000 hours of audiobook resources and more than 400 common skills in daily life have basically been able to meet the needs of the vast majority of families. In terms of playback, in addition to voice interaction, you can also use Bluetooth connection to make a small intelligent speaker into a traditional Bluetooth speaker, even if you use it with your TV, the applicable scene has been more obviously expanded.

Small intelligent speakers equipped with Baidu DuerOS, can correspondingly realize the control of smart home devices. Jingyi revealed at the press conference that DuerOS has activated more than 87 million devices, more than 21.4 million monthly active users, more than 21.4 million partners, more than 100 landing master devices equipped with DuerOS, and more than 13000 developers gathered throughout the DuerOS open platform. Baidu is trying to connect more household devices and try to open up a market in the big market of smart homes.

Summary: powerful AI technology brings rich functional experience

The design and shape of small intelligent speakers have returned to the more traditional form of speakers in people's impression, and the most important thing in intelligent speakers is sound quality and intelligent experience. Around these two aspects, small intelligent speakers give uncompromising hardware configuration, 360-degree pick-up range and good sound quality, as well as the more evolved AI artificial intelligence experience, and the first introduction of "geek mode" is also very cool techs style. The addition of "Children's Mode" further reflects Baidu's humanistic concern for low-collar users.

Overall, the small intelligent speaker is enough to meet our expectations for a household smart speaker, combined with the current 89 yuan tasting fresh price, it is basically to make a friend. In the general situation of 100-yuan intelligent speakers, it seems that there is a price war, while small intelligent speakers shoulder the important task of opening up more markets.


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