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Google AIY Voice Kit $15 (Raspberry Pi Included) $14.98

$14.98
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Google AIY Voice Kit is down to $14.98. (Originally 49.99)

Note that this kit includes
Raspberry Pi Zero WH
Voice Bonnet
Speaker
Micro SD Card
Mechanical Hardware
Cardboard
Push Button
Button Harness
Micro USB Cable

Not Included:
USB Power Supply
2mm Flat Screwdriver

Check Inventory here at your nearest Target Stores:

https://brickseek.com/target-inve...07-06-0026


https://www.target.com/p/google-v...A-53416295
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Created 04-15-2019 at 08:53 PM by pulavas
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#2
bad reviews

The kit takes about 30 - 60 minutes to assemble depending upon your skill level. Warning! A 2mm flat head screwdriver is 100% required for this project. This is the size used to fix most eyeglasses. The assembly instructions are located online not in the box. The URL is printed on the inside cover of the box. I attempted to include it here, but Amazon censored wouldn't permit it to be included in the review.

Google was quite deceptive with the marketing on this product. By all appearances on the packaging, assembly instructions (available online-only), and user instructions (available online-only), consumers are led to believe they will be building a standalone, Raspberry Pi powered voice assistant. Once the kit is completed, it can only be operated while logged into an SSH server on a PC/MAC or Android smart phone (iOS users are out of luck.)

You should be aware you only get 60 minutes use of the Google API running the demo per month. If you go over 60 minutes, Google will bill you $0.006/15 seconds use over 60 minutes.

If you don't have an Android phone to setup the device or just choose to use a PC/Mac, you need to be aware that the Shell Secure Extension the instructions tell you to download and install to Chrome is very buggy. One of the steps requires you to paste text into it. Problem? The paste function is currently not support on the extension. There are a few workarounds to force paste to work, but they are too lengthy to include in a review.

I just bought this from Target. I had high hopes, but those hopes were quickly busted after learning the drawbacks of the V2 kit.
The V1 kit, even though it lacked the bundled Pi board and took more time to assemble, was better than this one. The V2 kit seems to be a cheap downgrade.
Pros -
*Comes with the Pi board, and both boards are tiny.
*You can get a functional almost-assistant from this.
*You get 4 pins on the board to expand the lights or connect to some sort of automation.
Cons -
*Doesn't come with instructions. You need to go to the website.
*Doesn't come with the tiny screwdriver needed for the speaker connection.
*Doesn't come with the Micro USB adapter to plug in a keyboard and mouse. Doesn't come with the HDMI cable to plug into the mini HDMI.
*Doesn't come with a power supply. (It does come with a USB cable).
*Doesn't work with hotwords like "Hey Google" to wake it up and talk to it.
*The Raspberry Pi Zero that it comes with lacks the processing power to use hotwords, therefore it's not in the programming to make that work.
*You have to log into it with a PC or phone to start the demo every time you want to start it up to use it.
*You have to hit the button, wait for the light to change, then speak every time you want to use it.
*The assistant is VERY limited compared to the assistant on my phone of in a Google home speaker. You can't even change the volume of the speaker through the assistant. You have to log into it to change the volume.
*Can't customize the assistant features like you can in other apps. (Biggest thing, can't change voice)

What's the point in having a Google assistant if you have to walk over to it, boot it up, start the program, then hit the button to ask something?
I get it that this is also a learning project, but since it's bundled with Pi board that can't handle hotwords, you are limited on what you can do with this speaker. If you have to use a computer or phone to make it work, why not just use the computer or phone to look up what you were going to ask? This seems pointless.
In my case, I wanted to bypass the cardboard box and build it into something custom, but... that didn't happen because it's simply not a very functional kit.

Google needs to make this function like a real Google home assistant that actually works when you say "Hello Google" and have the program auto start if the device looses power.

I really like the idea behind this kit,, I really do... But it seems like this kit was made to be cheap, and it certainly is a cheap kit. I'm not able to make this work for the project I'm working on, and I just don't see it being worth hanging onto since it's a hassle to even use it.
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#3
So you're basically paying roughly normal cost for the Pi Zero W.H. and getting a bunch of other crap for free... I mean... ok? If any of the other crap is useful for some other project than the crappy speaker then hey I guess it's a good deal.
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#4
That review seems better suited for the full price kit.

At 15 bucks it matches the price of the RPI Zero W with headers, plus the extra stuff like SD card and zero shipping fees or time. And you can reprogram the zero. Sure it sucks as a google assistant but that's probably why it's being clearanced out.
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#5
It still says $49.99 at my Target. Maybe it isn't being discounted in Austin, TX?
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#6
Microcenter has been selling the Pi-not-included versions of this kit for $5 basically since they were first released.

Likely B&M only though.
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#7
Showing $50 & OOS both online and in all stores.
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#8
Plenty of 14.98 stock around me, but currently a seller on Amazon has NEW for $16.50 shipped with no tax. Which is .90 more after tax in my state
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#9
Quote from globalsaver
:
Plenty of 14.98 stock around me, but currently a seller on Amazon has NEW for $16.50 shipped with no tax. Which is .90 more after tax in my state
Can you link the Amazon page? I only see the old version that does not include a raspberry pi ZH.
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#10
Quote from globalsaver
:
Plenty of 14.98 stock around me, but currently a seller on Amazon has NEW for $16.50 shipped with no tax. Which is .90 more after tax in my state
https://www.amazon.com/Google-GOO...B075SFLWKX



Question:
The first image shows a box that says "raspberry pi included". is the pi included or not?
Answer:
The pi is not included. Thanks.
By DLJKMarketing SELLER on September 16, 2018

There are two versions of AIY Voice. Be sure you're purchasing version 2 and you will get a Raspberry Pi Zero included. The photo of included parts shows two small circuit boards. One is the Google AIY board and the other is the Pi Zero which is the same size. You should be able to build the project with what is in the… see more
By Larry L. Ryan on September 16, 2018

A pi was not included with mine. It was necessary to download software for the pi (your pi). The software contained scripts which did not run. I was never successful in getting mine to run.

Money wasted.
By B. L. Taylor on September 16, 2018
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#11
$5 at Microcenter
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Quote from froberts2
:
Microcenter has been selling the Pi-not-included versions of this kit for $5 basically since they were first released.

Likely B&M only though.
For the version without headers, yes, and it's a great deal (though only the first one you purchase gets the $5 price):
https://www.microcenter.com/produ...575/zero-w

But the version with headers is considerably more expensive at $13.99:
https://www.microcenter.com/produ...ed-headers

If the Target deal has the version with the headers, that's a pretty solid deal. And overall, it's a great deal from a parts perspective.
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#13
I got several of the V1 versions of this from MC a while back, for me and my nephews. Just got around to putting one together and testing it last week. Assembling it is easy, and setting up the mSD card not much harder (well, if you're tech-savvy, if not don't bother with this). I used an RPi B 3. I attached a wireless keyboard/trackpad (which was recognized by the Pi), connected it to a monitor, then plugged in the power adapter. 30 seconds later it booted into a customized version of Raspbian. I set up WiFi and basic settings, then ran some test scripts to make sure the speaker and mic worked (they did). So far so good.

Then I started running into issues. None of the python example scripts worked, all resulting in errors. Granted, I don't know python or its IDE, but you'd think they'd make this relatively painless. Perhaps I have to manually set up libraries, paths, links, etc. I then tried to log into the Google web site for this project, but when I saw that I had to set up a pay account, as described above, I balked. If I can't make this thing work beyond 60 min a month, without paying Google, then nuh-uh.

Perhaps there are ways of getting around the subscription requirement, but I'm guessing that Google's locked down the part of the code that enables voice recognition so you can't avoid paying them. Most likely I'll have to find some open source 3rd party code to replicate some of the functionality.

But, still, $5 for the kit gets you way more than $5 worth in parts, that you can use in many other projects. Just the "Hat" alone is worth double or more, since it has header leads for attaching servos, motors, lights and sensors. Plus it comes with a nice speaker, stereo mic board, button, and some cables. This is the V1 version mind you (which are still available at MC). I'm sure that the V2 version is worth the cost as well, for the parts.

For their intended applications either kit appears to be so-so at best. But, with a little ingenuity and effort, I'm sure that competent tinkerers can do other interesting things with these, like building a "smart" robot or car that can hear and "speak" (and with some additional parts see and light up). If you've got a bright, tech-inclined child in the 10-15 year old range, and a limited budget, you could do worse than either kit. Just be prepared to put in some work. But that's the point, right?
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#14
Quote from globalsaver
:
Plenty of 14.98 stock around me, but currently a seller on Amazon has NEW for $16.50 shipped with no tax. Which is .90 more after tax in my state
I think your link is misleading as Amazon one doesn't have Pi Zero included in the package.
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#15
I don't understand what this is or what it does. So clearly I need it desperately. Purchased.
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