With Apple’s HomePod smart speaker reportedly laying in wait, the tech titan is rolling new Siri features out to mobile users. Following a beta test early this month, the virtual assistant now automatically […]
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For some, the whole smart speaker market seemingly came out of no where. Amazon launched the Echo and for a while it was too expensive for your average customer to consider buying. Amazon was aware of this and then released the Echo Dot and Echo Tap to help fill in those price ranges. Now, the company has one with a touch screen on it that is now sitting at the same price point the original Echo was released at but includes a lot more features.
Google has also entered this market with Google Home and there have been reports of Samsung wanting in on it as well. The smart speaker market may be dominated by Amazon right now, but it’s still early and there is plenty of room for new competition. Not everyone has been a fan of the smart speaker though, even after they buy one many people simply stop using them. Some have wondered if they will go the way smartwatches have and see interest dying off.
A new survey from NPR indicates that smart speakers are increasingly becoming vital to everyday life. When asked, owners say that they’ll use their smart speaker for 7.5 common tasks on average each week. Of the people surveyed, 65% of smart speaker owners say they would not go back to life without their smart speaker. 70% of these owners say they’re listening to more audio (music, news, podcasts, etc.) in their home thanks to the wireless capabilities.
On top of that, 20% of them even say that streaming to their connected speaker is how they most often listen to audio these days. The survey continued and showed that 45% of owners say they’ll be purchasing a new connected speaker in the future, and 69% of them have recommended their friends to start using one in their homes. That stat makes it seem like connected speakers are going to be a popular choice as a gift for those who have yet to try one.
Source: National Public Media
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We all knew the Amazon Echo would be smart, but I didn’t think it would get this smart. Over time, Amazon has added integration from so many sources that the Echo is no longer a device to just ask simple questions. Now you can ask the Echo complex questions or give it commands to do something very specific. Today’s update in Echo capabilities has to do with its ability to serve up news. Amazon is adding integration from six news outlets.
- Discovery News
- ESPN Radio
- The Economist
Amazon also notes RhymeZone is a new piece of the Echo’s backbone. RhymeZone is a dictionary used only for finding rhymes. Feel free to ask Alex to return a word rhyming with whatever you send its way.
Don’t own an Amazon Echo? You can order one by following the source link below. The item is out of stock at the moment, but Amazon should once again be shipping it on February 28.
Come comment on this article: Amazon Echo gets newsy with integration from news outlets
The latest update to the Amazon Echo adds a host of new news sources to the smart speaker’s Flash Briefing feature — and also gives it some mad rhyming skills. With today’s update, the Echo will read news from the likes of CNN, NPR and Discovery. Bloomberg, ESPN Radio and The Economist are also now on
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