Amazon is adding voice calling and messaging to its Alexa devices, which will most likely be available in time for the launch of the Echo Show on June 28th. In addition to the traditional features, Echo now can supports voice calling between Alexa devices.
The Echo Show can be configured to work with your streaming media services such as Pandora, Spotify, and, of course, Amazon Music.
Amazon's Alexa voice assistant platform now has a face, and it's able to dial up your friends and family directly. Last week leaked images showed the Amazon Echo Show in black and white - and those pictures turned out to be real.
Amazon's latest hardware foray comes after limited success with its Kindle and Fire tablets, but also a failure for its Fire smartphones. Echo Show is also an expertly tuned speaker that can fill any room with immersive audio powered by Dolby.
The Siri speaker would connect to the internet and users could talk to it through Apple's voice assistant, Siri. You can control lights, adjust the thermostat, view camera feeds, and it does seem to do things that are helpful and that were not possible on the Echo speaker because of the lack of a touchscreen. It's not uncommon for Alexa to point you to your phone screen (and the associated Alexa app) to get a full answer to your question. The device includes eight microphones and noise cancellation capabilities, so it can hear you from any direction, according to Amazon.
Amazon's Echo is expected to continue its dominance, with a share of almost 71 percent, though eMarketer expects Google's Home speaker to cut into that share in the coming years. Rumored features of the device were also reported before the gadget was announced.
The camera on the Echo Show won't be on all the time - it's not a security cam, after all. What makes this possible today are the advances in home networking (Wi-Fi) and video calling protocols that weren't even on the radar of science fiction dreamers half a century ago.
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