Amazon is hosting its virtual event later today to announce new Echo devices. Now, just hours ahead of its event, Bloomberg has detailed what we could see at the event: from “Echo for Walls” to “Home robot” to more speakers and wearables, Amazon is expected to announce loads of products tonight.
Bloomberg says the company is currently working on these products, though we might not see all of them being announced today.
Echo for Walls
First and foremost, the report says that Amazon is working on an Amazon Alexa-controlled Echo 15-inch display. It can either be mounted on a wall or placed on a table with a stand, according to both internal documents and people familiar with the matter. Interestingly, the smart device could be used as a control panel for controlling all smart appliances, such as lights, locks, fans, and even geysers.
In addition to it serving as a smart home controller, it would serve the purpose of a display that shows the status of inbound Amazon packages. Of course, the product will have UI elements to display date, time, weather, calendar, widgets, photos, and other common smart display UI elements.
Amazon is also testing the device to serve as a device to watch recipes on for the kitchen. Like other Amazon products, it will also run third-party video streaming apps such as Netflix, says the report. Though we could see the product being announced today, the report claims Amazon is targeting the February 2022 release.
Another product Amazon has been working on for years is the home robot codenamed Vesta. According to the report, Amazon and its top management aren’t keen on launching the product. Executives such as Jeff Bezos have drawn concerns over the device. It initially used the Alexa interface, was initially thought of as a security tool. But with Amazon’s Ring flying drone drawing security concerns, Amazon isn’t sure of launching a security robot with a display.
If it ever launches, Bloomberg expects the price to be upwards of $1,000. Amazon has reportedly tested two versions of the product — one with a 7-inch display and one with a 10-inch display.
Sound bars and Cars
According to Bloomberg, Amazon has also been eyeing to enter the sound bar market. “The company had originally planned to release it in 2021, but it’s now unlikely to meet that shipping timeline,” says the report. However, the product is expected to be announced today as Amazon tends to announce its devices months ahead of shipping them.
Apparently, Amazon’s Echo sound bar will feature a front-facing camera. The product has been codenamed Harmony and would let customers take video calls from their TVs.
According to the report, Amazon is also “planning” a larger push in the automotive space. Amazon is apparently working on Echo Auto. In addition to the current generation’s tech, the “updated version will have a new design and may be able to charge a user’s device with inductive technology.”
Speakers, Wearables, and Chipsets
Amazon isn’t planning for a major redesign of its smart speakers this year. However, the company is planning a major push in the health sector. “The company has internally discussed a slew of new offerings, including a model geared toward kids and another for senior citizens that would detect when they fall and monitor activities,” says the report.
Amazon is also working on custom chips for future versions of the Echo devices, according to the report.