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November 7, 2014

Amazon Echo Serves As Speaker, Assistant, Encyclopedia

Device To Go On Market In Coming Weeks

It make look like a thermos but Amazon‘s new device holds a fountain of knowledge.

amazonUnveiled Thursday, Amazon’s Echo is part personal assistant, part speaker and all cool. The tall, cylinder is Internet-connected and can do everything from ensure your shopping list is up-to-date to have you grooving to your favourite tunes.

Voice activated. Echo responds to commands and questions but users will have to start those commands and queries with ‘Alexa’, the device’s ‘name’. So, someone wanting to find out what year Ford began making Mustangs, for example, would have to say “Alexa, when did Ford start producing Mustangs?”

The name, The Wall Street Journal reports, comes from the ancient Library of Alexandria. Fitting considering Echo grows with the user.

“Echo’s brain is in the cloud, running on Amazon Web Services so it continually learns and adds more functionality over time. The more you use Echo, the more it adapts to your speech patterns, vocabulary, and personal preferences,” Amazon explains on its site.

Users can access their Echo through a mobile app, as well, so when simple tasks such as updating a calendar or adding cheese to a shopping list are completed they can check on it through their device.

And, another cool feature is the fact Echo is always active.

“It’s always on—just ask for information, music, news, weather, and more. Echo begins working as soon as it hears you say the wake word, “Alexa.” It’s also an expertly-tuned speaker that can fill any room with immersive sound,” the site boasts.

Echo will sell for $199 when it officially launches in a few weeks though Amazon Prime subscribers can knock $100 off that price.


W. Brice McVicar is a staff writer for SiteProNews.