The JBL Link Bar is finally on sale after being announced over 14 months ago

First bar to feature both Google Assistant and Android TV lands

JBL Link Bar finally goes on sale
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Well, look who's come crawling back - the JBL Link Bar is finally on sale, after first being announced in May 2018 and suffering multiple delays since.

If you can't quite remember the story of this particular smart soundbar, well, let us refresh your memory. The saga first began back at I/O 2018, when Google announced a partnership between the pair that would see a new soundbar - the JBL Link Bar - come packing not just Google Assistant, but also Android TV - a first for the space.

Read next: Best smart speakers 2020

Connecting over HDMI, the Link Bar allows the user to tap into the smart TV platform while skipping over the necessity for a separate set-top box. Naturally, when the TV is turned off, it still acts as a regular Google Assistant-powered speaker, too.

And the price tag for combining both Android TV and Assistant is also fairly in line with current rivals in the space, with the Link View currently listed at $399.95 on the JBL website.

In comparison, the Sonos Beam (which comes with support for both Google Assistant and Alexa) will set you back $399, while the Alexa-powered Polk Command Bar (which includes a Polk subwoofer) is cheaper, at $299.99.

However, with the Link View stepping into new territory, and allowing customers to save on a smart TV box, it's an interesting use case for Google. When it first unveiled the Link Bar, it suggested it would be part of a number of hybrid devices. We're yet to see them, but at least we now finally have JBL's take.

Stay tuned for our full review, where we'll be putting the new device through its paces and comparing it against the current crop of smart soundbars.

TAGGED    smart speakers    google home

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