Sure, you can summon Alexa
to order a pizza, but if you want a beer, you will have to get up and march your backside to the refrigerator, and get it yourself. Might that change one day? Who knows, but perhaps things are trending in that direction. There is talk of Amazon
developing an Alexa-enabled robot that could follow users around the home, like a puppy (but without the pee puddles in its wake).
It is called Vesta, and is it is supposedly one of the things being developed by Amazon's Lab126
research and development division located in Sunnyvale, California. Whether Vesta actually sees the light of day or not remains to be seen, but at the very least, the robot is something Amazon is pouring resources into.
People who are familiar with the product told Bloomberg that Vesta, in its current form, stands about waist high. Vesta is described as possibly being a mobile Alexa gadget, in that it could follow people to corners of their homes where there may not already be an Echo device.
Vesta relies on a bunch of camera sensors to navigate the landscape. It can be summoned by voice, though to what purpose remains to be seen. Amazon, if you are reading this, give Vesta the ability to fetch things from the fridge, please and thank you!
In addition to some mysterious robot product, Amazon is also said to be developing another version of its Echo speaker
. This next iteration will be a higher quality unit, with a wider profile to accommodate more components. It will have at least four tweeters.
This is also being developed by Lab126. Amazon popularized the smart speaker market and continues to lead the way
in what has become a fast growing category, but is also seeing increasing competition in the upper echelon from the likes of Apple's HomePod
and Google's Home Max
If things go to plan, Amazon will launch its upgraded Echo speaker in early 2020.