Amazon announced that Echo, its voice assistant smart device, will be available in thousands of retail locations across the United States in time for the holiday shopping season. It will be in over 3,000 The Home Depot, Staples, Sears, Brookstone, RadioShack, Fred Meyer, P.C. Richard & Son, and other retail locations.
The device has seven microphones and beam-forming technology, which it uses to listen to you from across the room. It uses Amazon's virtual assistant technology Alexa to help you with looking up information, getting the weather, setting timers and alarms, getting news, creating shopping/to-do lists, etc. It will play music from a variety of apps, integrate with connected home apps, and access local search with Yelp. It's also compatible with Audible, Google Calendar, and more.
“Amazon Echo is a must-have gift this holiday season, and we’re excited to work with retailers across the country to make Echo available to their customers,” said Greg Hart, Vice President, Amazon Echo and Alexa Voice Services. “Using only your voice to play music, control your lights, and ask questions is magical, so it’s great that people will be able to visit local stores and try it for themselves.”
“Our customers continue to show interest in smart home products across the many categories we carry. One of our newest products, Amazon Echo, is a smart device that helps make connected home easy and fun,” said Jeff Epstein, Merchandising Vice President at The Home Depot. “Echo, paired with smart lighting devices, is an excellent gift for this holiday season.”
“Staples.com launched Amazon Echo several months ago and the product has been well received by our customers,” said Eric Cayton, VP Technology at Staples. “We are excited to continue to work with Amazon to offer Echo in select Staples retail stores and on Staples.com during the holiday season.”
“We’re thrilled to have Amazon Echo in select Brookstone stores this holiday season,” said Brookstone CEO Tom Via. “Our goal is to give customers the opportunity to see and try out the best in new technology and gifts, and Echo is a great fit for them.”
Amazon Echo costs 179.99. It's already available at Amazon.com, but the roll-out into retail stores will occur over the coming weeks.
Image via Amazon