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Amazon is introducing new earbuds and a new version of its echo speakers. This will place the Alexa voice assistant in a position to do more things than she has ever done before.
Global retail giant Amazon (AMZN) had indicated its plans to improve its audio range of devices with a few moves which will see it be at par with the product lines of major competitors. For start, the retail giant plans to introduce earbuds which will be powered by virtual voice assistant Alexa.
Codenamed “Puget” the earbuds will have an inbuilt accelerometer for motion detection, pace speed and the approximate amount of calories burned during a run.
Separately, Amazon is expected to also to introduce a heavier Echo device with woofers and improved speakers. All these are expected to be announced at its annual hardware event which scheduled for Wednesday.
Alexa is Going Places
Amazon has always had plans for its voice assistant Alexa to be everywhere. From the house, on the move, in the office just name it. With these two innovations among others, they are getting closer to their goal. The earbuds will be able to access Alexa via mobile phones since they don’t have ready accessibility to the internet directly.
The earbuds are also expected to be able to connect to both iPhones and Android devices as well. This will allow for them to be able to compete directly with other competitors. The earbuds are also expected to be priced below $100 giving them a strategic advantage in terms of affordability.
The new Echo meanwhile is expected to become the most important device in Amazon’s home device market allowing for greater sound quality. This, of course, puts the retail still in the lead of the smart devices game though challenged by competitors such as Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana and certainly unlike Google’s search assistant which doesn’t have a name yet.
Amazon is Going into New Markets
With the new Earbuds, Amazon is leaving its comfort zone and making an effort to penetrate the health and wellness industry. The retail giant recently put together a team just for that. This also allows for Alexa to be able to do more and offer more choices to the user and to make all sorts of links between the kinds of wants and needs the user will most likely have.
Already, Amazon leads the smart speaker space based on recent statistics. Google, however, is hot on the heels of the retail giant at least according to one opinion by Loup ventures. As for the earbuds, Apples’ Airpods are the clear market leader and its signature product is miles ahead of others in the earbud space (Jabra, Samsung, and Bose) based on recent research. How Amazon expects to bridge this gap remains unclear.
Alexa’s Ability to Prompt People to Buy Products
While it may sound like something out of a science fiction movie, Alexa able to prompt users to buy Amazon’s products. In a CNBC interview in June with amazon’s Senior Vice President David Limp he said:
“I don’t think they are necessarily buying more yet because of [Alexa], but they are doing certain things in digital that leads to buying some more things.”
This, of course, has led to many thinking about how big technological companies intrude in our lives with tools such as Artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data analytics all of which Amazon has and uses one way or the other.
AMZN is currently at $1,785, decreasing by 0.49% from it’s $1,794.16 previous close.