Amazon aims to expand the universe of its Alexa voice assistant with a pair of smart glasses, its first wearable device, the Financial Times reported late Tuesday.
The smartphone-tethered device would resemble a regular pair of spectacles and use a bone-conduction system that would allow the wearer to hear Alexa without the need for headphones, the newspaper reported, citing people familiar with Amazon’s plans.
The internet retailer also plans to beef up its smart home hardware lineup with a new internet-connected security camera system, the paper reported. When it’s connected to Amazon’s Echo products, people could view a live video feed on the, the company’s first smart speaker with a built-in touchscreen.
Amazon declined to comment on the report.
Alexa has become a significant force for Amazon as it looks to take over the smart home market, adding to the masses of Amazon shoppers and maintaining closer connections with them. The digital assistant has been , too, allowing people to cue up a song, pause a movie, dim the lights or check the weather entirely with voice interaction.
Amazon’s array of Echo devices has worked out well for the company, giving it 71 percent of the US smart speaker market, according to eMarketer. The newer Google Home speaker has 24 percent of the market, with the Apple HomePod set to arrive later this year.
But smart glasses may be a harder sell. Certainly that was the case for Google Glass, the search giant’s ill-fated effort effort a few years back. The high-tech eyewear provoked widespread anxiety about invasion of privacy and backlash against gadgetry overstepping its bounds, leading to a new putdown: “glassholes.” More recently, Snapchat maker Snap found a favorable reaction for its camera-equipped Spectacles, but that.
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