In the end, the Google Assistant-powered intercom isn’t quite as powerful as a Google Home. It can accept commands and, with the help of IFTTT recipes, control some of MisterM’s smart home gadgets. But for now, the Google AIY software doesn’t offer Chromecast or music integration, and it won’t work with a wake word like “OK Google.” That could obviously change if and when Google updates the source code. Either way, MisterM’s intercom is not only clever. It’s absolutely awesome—especially because his Instructables post tells you how to build your own.
But it’s not just Facebook that has problems with China, major Western technology companies like Google and Twitter are also shut out of the country. China’s government has been resistant to the explosion of the internet from the beginning, but it made certain allowances knowing that completely blocking the internet wasn’t an option in the modern world. Now, the growth of its own technology sector has given it a sort of parallel internet that can be controlled from within. Domestic companies like Baidu and Tencent offer search, microblogging, messaging, and other alternatives to the most popular web services. They also can’t tell Chinese censors “no.”