Amazon is expected to launch Echo, its voice-activated smart speaker device in India this year, according to the latest report from FactorDaily. Powered by Alexa which is an artificial intelligent voice assistant, Echo acts as a smart hub for your home.
Citing sources the report said that Amazon is “putting together content and localising the service,”. Amazon Echo is expected to be announced in second half of 2016. Announced in 2014, the device lets you enjoy music, manage everyday tasks and ask questions via voice commands. It offers real-time answers to questions ranging from cooking, news, sports and even basic day-to-day tasks like knowing the weather, stock markets and so on.
Last year, Google launched Google Home smart speaker that comes with Google Assistant which competes directly with Amazon Echo. Amazon is already aggressive in India with the recent Amazon Prime and Prime Video launch
Amazon is likely to bring its smart speaker Amazon Echo to India this year, according to two people aware of the matter. The company has started preparing to launch the device along with Alexa, the artificial intelligence powered assistant developed by the retailer.
“They’re putting together content and localising the service,” one of the sources told FactorDaily. The idea is to launch the device sometime towards the second half of the year.
Amazon does not officially sell Echo in India yet. A piece brought outside the country will work but with limited functions. The company, which has earmarked nearly $5 billion to invest in the Indian market, has been launching all its global services in the country lately.
The company, however, is keeping it under the wraps for now. “We do not comment on future plans and what we may or may not do,” an Amazon spokesperson told FactorDaily.
As we’d reported in July, Amazon launched Prime in India in December 2016. We’d also reported that the company has set aside nearly $300 million to grow its Prime’s content library. Meanwhile, the company has also kick started a project to improve its bottom line in India, a market where it is spending aggressively to woo customers.
For the US retailer, India is a key market. The retail segment in India is pegged to be over $650 billion in size and only a small fraction (about 2-3%) of sales currently happen online. It is locked in a battle with homegrown Flipkart, which is currently the market leader.
Amazon’s strong global product portfolio is an advantage it has over local players.
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has also been making moves in India. Market watchers anticipate a showdown between Alibaba and Amazon in the future.