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Amazon promises faster speeds in redesigned Echo device

The fourth generation Echo ditches the cylindrical design of the previous Echo lineup and instead features an orb-like design.

Article originally published by Forbes. Hargreaves Lansdown is not responsible for its content or accuracy and may not share the author's views. News and research are not personal recommendations to deal. All investments can fall in value so you could get back less than you invest.

Topline

Amazon unveiled an entirely redesigned Echo lineup during its annual hardware event Thursday, marking the most significant design overhaul since the product launched in 2015.

The fourth generation Echo will cost $99.99.

Key Facts

The fourth generation Echo ditches the cylindrical design of the previous Echo lineup and instead features an orb-like design.

The Echo Dot Kids Edition comes with Panda and Tiger-themed designs.

Amazon says the speaker runs on an AZ1 Neural Edge processor, a silicon module built with chip company MediaTek, that processes audio commands on-device before they are sent to the cloud, making Alexa responses faster.

Echo devices will include a built-in smart home hub with support for Zigbee, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Amazon Sidewalk.

Here’s how the pricing breaks down: Echo ($99.99), Echo Dot ($49.99), Echo Dot with clock ($59.99) and Echo Show 10 ($249.99).

Customers can already pre-order the new devices. The Echo, Echo Dot and Tiger-themed Echo Kids Edition will ship in the U.S. on October 22. The Echo Dot with a clock will ship on November 5. The Panda-themed Echo Kids Edition will ship on December 9.

Key Background

After Amazon launched the Echo in 2015, it had relatively few competitors and dominated the global market. But over time, new entrants—such as Apple, Google and Chinese companies Baidu and Alibaba—have eaten into Amazon’s market share, which is now 28.3%. Amazon is still the most popular smart speaker company, but Google isn’t far behind with 24.9% of the market as of 2019. 

Tangent

Security camera company Ring, which is owned by Amazon, launched an in-home surveillance drone, which some privacy advocates worry could be invasive.


This article was written by Rachel Sandler from Forbes and was legally licensed through the Industry Dive publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.

Article originally published by Forbes. Hargreaves Lansdown is not responsible for its content or accuracy and may not share the author's views. News and research are not personal recommendations to deal. All investments can fall in value so you could get back less than you invest.

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