It is expected that Amazon will release a higher end Alexa device in early 2017 with a large screen.
Amazon.com is said to have developed a premium speaker for Alexa along with a screen. Amazon’s home devices that are controlled by voice have enjoyed unexpected success in markets and the retailing giant is trying to capitalize on this success. In the process, it will also be fending off the competition coming from similar devices offered by Apple and Google.
The new higher end device will offer a touchscreen that is around seven inches in size. This is quite different to the usual cylindrical type of home devices offered by Amazon. The existing home gadgets offer responses through Alexa, the digital assistant and it is entirely voice based. With a touchscreen mode of operation, users will find it easier to access the content through the device and search for information on weather forecasts or news or a calendar appointment and so on. Two people who are familiar with this information offered the news anonymously, as they were not willing to be identified while discussing a product not yet announced.
The new speaker from Amazon will be bigger and will be tilted upwards, so that users can view the screen when the device is placed on a counter and if the user is standing, according to the reports.
The speakers will be of a premium grade and the sound will improve, as compared to the present Echo devices, according to the anonymous news. The new device will be announced during the first quarter of the coming year. However, Amazon that is based in Seattle has refused to comment on the matter.
Smart Home Devices
Such smart home devices like Echo are one of the latest offerings by tech companies. However, the home devices are not as popular as smartphones or PCs. The track record of Amazon is also not very consistent, especially considering the Fire Phone, which was launched in the year 2014. However, the Echo speakers have been a hit, as the sales have been estimated as being more than five million devices since 2014.
Fire OS for New Device
The new home device from Amazon will run on an optimized Fire operating system, which is the software running Fire tablets and TV set top boxes. However, the new device will also offer a response when commands are spoken, just like the present Alexa. There are reports that Amazon is currently testing features allowing the user to pin a photo on the screen, similar to placing such an item physically on a door.
According to the news source, Amazon will continue to sell its Dot and Tap as well as Echo speakers, which users typically place in their bedroom or living room. The Dot costs $50, the Tap $130 and the Echo speaker $180, so the new model with screen will be priced somewhat higher, according to the news.