Amazon is plotting a new Echo speaker featuring greatly improved sound, as it seeks to head of the threat of the incoming Apple HomePod speaker.
According to sources speaking to Engadget, the next smart speaker will add in ‘several’ tweeters, rather than the single tweeter and woofer combo featured in the current model.
This would offset the biggest criticism levied at the popular Alexa-packing device; the poor sound compared with other Bluetooth-enabled speakers, as well as the Google Home rival.
Meanwhile, the company plans to reduce the physical footprint, with the source describing it as 3-4 Echo Dot devices stacked upon each other.
Amazon is also ditching the plastic speaker grille, according to the report. Instead it’ll use a cloth covering that could ensure a more premium-looking product.
The improvements don’t stop there, Wednesday’s report says, with Amazon plotting to boost the microphone technology in a way that’s still unclear.
Currently the Amazon Echo has a total of 7 far-field mics, so it’s unlikely the firm is going to be adding more. It may be that the next-gen Echo simply improves its already excellent voice recognition tech.
It’s unclear when Amazon will release its new Echo, what it’ll be called and how much it’ll cost. However, if the retail giant is seeking to go all-in and challenge Apple’s HomePod we may end up seeing a more premium price point.
Amazon has naturally declined to comment on the reports, but we’re already prepping us for the best Echo yet. Let’s hope we see it on sale for Prime Day 2018!