Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Amazon Echo Amazon Echo Amazon Echo

Darrell Etherington, TechCruch:

Amazon has a new product that doesn’t really have any current equivalent form any other tech company – a connected speaker called Echo that’s always-on, listening for commands that its virtual assistant can then respond to with information or by triggering a task.

[…]

Amazon notes that it only listens when you say the activation word, which appears to be “Alexa” by default.

So it’s always listening, then.

And I wonder if this, like the Fire Phone, will simply be a conduit to buying stuff from Amazon. If it can be hooked up home-wide and it’s not pushy about filling your Amazon cart, it could be a slick Jarvis-esque product. If it’s just gonna suggest new albums to buy when you tell it to play music, it sounds pretty weak. In either case, I’m not sure I’d buy one; Amazon simply isn’t a great hardware company.