A wireless speaker with an always-listening Siri/Google Now-style voice-driven AI agent named Alexa. $199, or $99 for Prime members.
Update: It took me a few hours to collect my thoughts on this. First, I think it’s problematic that Echo is anchored in a room. How will anyone get in the habit of using this instead of Siri or Google Now when they can only use it in one room? In their demo video, the family seemingly bought three or four of these things, because they have one in their living room, kitchen, and bedroom. Your phone is in your pocket all the time. And if it is anchored in a room, why not combine it with the Fire TV? I want fewer gadgets in my living room, not more. If Apple did this it’d be a feature of Apple TV, not yet another standalone gadget. (And I think it’d be a great idea for Apple to add “Hey Siri” listening to Apple TV.)
★ Thursday, 6 November 2014