A little more than a year after Microsoft announced it, the GLAS smart thermostat from Johnson Controls is now up for pre-order on the company’s website, with first shipments starting on August 24. After Harman Kardon's Invoke speaker, GLAS is the second Cortana-powered device to launch in the market, but Johnson Controls apparently chose a less risky approach with its smart thermostat.
The Redmond giant originally introduced GLAS as a device built around Microsoft technologies (Windows 10 IoT Core, Cortana voice services, and Azure Cloud), but the smart thermostat actually supports Alexa and Google Assistant as well, and all three digital assistants can be used to adjust temperature. However, only Cortana is directly integrated into GLAS, and you’ll need to use an Amazon Echo device or Google Home speaker connected to the thermostat to interact with it using Alexa or Google Assistant.
Choosing Cortana may not be the obvious choice for a smart device, especially since both Alexa and Google Assistant have a much better market share and mindshare. However, Microsoft's digital assistant does provide some neat features such as an integration with your Outlook calendar, so the smart thermostat will know when you're not home.
GLAS is compatible with many types of heating and cooling systems, and Johnson Controls also created apps for iOS and Android to let you access the thermostat when you're not home. You can pre-order the $319 device today on the company's website, but you'll soon be able to find it at retail Microsoft Stores and online.