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Its subtext is all about Google versus Amazon.Executives from both companies have also been turning up at news conferences held by other companies such as Panasonic, LG and Toyota.THE STAKESThe two companies – and to a lesser extent, Apple, with Siri, and Microsoft, with Cortana – are waging a fierce struggle to establish their assistants as de facto standards for a new generation of voice-controlled devices. Google said this week it's integrating its voice assistant to allow remote control of some settings in Kia and Fiat Chrysler vehicles, while Toyota announced a similar arrangement with Amazon that enables drivers to ask Alexa to turn the heat up at home before they arrive.General Electric is showing off a suite of smart kitchen gizmos that connect its "Geneva" voice assistant to those of Amazon and Google.Apple, however, had to push back release of the HomePod, its almost $350 smart speaker, until "early" this year; it was originally scheduled for December 2017 .
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