Amazon’s goal hardware-wise seems to be bringing its digital assistant Alexa to as many devices as possible. Sources are now saying that the online retail giant is coming up with wireless earbuds that will also serve as a fitness tracker. And for fans of its Echo line of speakers, they are also reportedly working on a bigger device that should also sound better. There is no confirmation of these rumors just yet but we may get an inkling of what are their plans after their annual hardware event this Wednesday.
A CNBC report says that the supposed wireless earbuds is codenamed Puget. Aside from letting you listen to your music, audiobooks, or podcasts, it will also come with a built-in accelerometer so that you can track activities like running and monitoring how many calories you’ve burned with your physical activity. And of course, more importantly for Amazon, it will give you “Alexa on the go” so you can use its functionalities while you’re mobile or outdoors.
However, the earbuds won’t come with built-in cellular connectivity so you will still have to pair it with an Android device (and an iOS one if you’re so inclined). If ever this pushes through, this is Amazon’s first device that will be geared towards the health monitoring market. It will also reportedly be priced below $100 to undercut the competition, as Amazon is known to do for its other products.
Meanwhile, they’re also working on a “bulkier” Echo speaker, although the only reason why it should be bigger is to accommodate better hardware for better sound quality. It will be set up as a central speaker in their core home market and will also come with a woofer and higher sound quality than the previous devices. And just like the wireless earbuds, Alexa support would be a main thing for this speaker.
Alexa is still the leader in the smart speaker market, according to the Consumer Intelligence Research Partners but Google Assistant is coming in as a close second and may even surpass it by 2022, according to reports from Loup Ventures. Let’s see if adding new hardware will help Amazon keep its lead over its competitors.