Harman Kardon unveils its priciest smart speaker yet, and no, this doesn't support Bixby either
But if you thought $349 was a little too much to ask for an Amazon Echo and Google Home rival, wait until you hear what Harman Kardon plans to charge for its next Google Assistant device.
The Citation 500 is technically the premium audio brand’s very first smart speaker powered by the search giant’s growingly popular (and intelligent) virtual assistant, although Harman International Industries also owns the JBL name.
Ironically, both US companies are in turn owned by Samsung, which hasn’t been able to commercially release a Bixby-controlled Echo or HomePod killer yet. What's even more ironic is that Harman previously rolled out smart speakers with both Cortana and Alexa functionality.
But the Harman Kardon Citation 500 is significantly costlier than both the $100 Invoke and $200 Allure, reportedly heading for the UK soon at a recommended price of £549. That roughly equates to $700, although if the ultra-high-end smart speaker is ever to be expected stateside, it will probably fetch no more than $599.95.
Keep in mind that many found the Google Home Max hard to swallow at $399, although for what it’s worth, the Citation 500 is still a whole lot cheaper than Bang & Olufsen’s Beosound 1 and 2 with Google Assistant.
Slated for a complete presentation at the IFA trade show in Berlin in just a few days, this bad boy is pretty massive, loud, and powerful, with 200W stereo sound, support for 24 bit/96 Khz HD audio streaming, and a full-color LCD touch panel for playback control in addition to your typical Google Assistant voice capabilities. You’ll apparently be able to choose between gray and black wool designs starting late next month, at least in a number of select European markets to be fully detailed at IFA Berlin.