At an event in Seattle in the U.S. on Wednesday, Amazon unveiled a US$35 (R475) device, the Echo Connect, that plugs into existing home landline phone jacks. "I would give the show 4 stars IF it had YouTube again (wasn't that one of the selling points???)", said one reviewer, who rated the Echo Show at two out of five stars.
But Amazon is also conveniently leaving out the real reasons that this happened. According to Amazon, the device's voice recognition technology has also been given a second-generation upgrade. We think the best way to describe this device is that it is a new age communication device. But here is a thing, it works over the internet so if your internet is down then it will just sit idle. Tens of thousands of Alexa skills that can be accessed from Echo devices will now be available for in-car use, too.
The redesigned version of the e-tailer's first Echo features a more compact design and a choice of six colors and finishes: charcoal, sandstone, heather gray, oak veneer, walnut veneer, and silver. In the time since, the number of Alexa-powered devices has grown from a single smart speaker into an entire family including the Dot, the Look, and the Show-not to mention all the third-party devices out there. You can use this remote to control the Fire TV as well as use Alexa to control smart home devices, stream music, and more. It looks identical to the first-generation Echo but comes with several improvements, the most important being the ability to act as a smart home hub. Amazon says over 100 devices are supported at launch and one Philips Hue smart light bulb is included. A rather smart move to make users try smart lighting.
Amazon also announced that its Echo speakers will receive support for making standard phone calls.
After Apple announced its new 4K capable Apple TV, an update to the Fire TV, Amazon's own set-top streaming box, was inevitable. Good deal, we say! However, Amazon is looking to make up for this with multiple bundles created to make sure that its microphones really are in every room: The company will sell a combination of Echo Dot and Fire TV will sell for $80.
The Best For Last: While Amazon won't be producing it directly, its voice assistant will be featured in future versions of the Big Mouth Billy Bass, the popular wall-mounted talking fish. This means that the first will be able to lip sync and dance when paired over Bluetooth. Year-to-date, AMZN has gained 26.87%, versus a 13.51% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.