Amazon's latest device is a wireless, India-exclusive Echo designed for portability

Ruben Fields
December 5, 2019

Now, Amazon has added another smart speaker to its lineup in India with the launch of the Amazon Echo Input.

The name of the new product is a bit confusing – the Echo Input was like a Fire TV stick for speakers, it made a dumb speaker smart by driving them over a 3.5mm cable or Bluetooth. Moreover, Amazon for Echo Input has always taken care of the liquid spills as it claims that the new smart speaker is splash resistant. That number only goes up to 11 hours when the gadget is in standby mode, so Amazon recommends keeping it plugged in (or at least switched off) when you aren't actively using it.

"Portability has been one of the most requested features in India", said Miriam Daniel, VP of Alexa Devices. Unlike other Amazon smart speakers, the Echo Input comes with a built-in battery, which means you can even use it when unplugged. Unlike the Echo Input Portable Smart Speaker Edition, the Tap required users to hit a button at the top of the cylinder to summon Alexa, which wasn't exactly convenient (why would you tap on a button to then ask a smart assistant to turn off the lights when you can just tap the light switch yourself?).

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The audience included Home Minister Amit Shah and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman among others. Despite the initiatives, the downward spiral in the Indian economy continues.

For those in the West, there are some third-party accessories created to bring portability to the Amazon Echo.

After launching almost a dozen Echo speaker models in India in two years, Amazon said on Wednesday it is adding a new variant to the mix that addresses one of the most requested features from customers in the nation: Portability. Thanks to Amazon's far-field voice recognition that can also be found on other Echo devices, the new Echo Input allows you to access Alexa from anywhere in the room. You know that the device is fully charged when all the 4 LEDs turn off.

With a portable speaker that packs in a 4,800 mAh battery with a promised backup time of 10 hours on continuous playback, Amazon is trying to target the millennial users who like to carry their speakers around while playing music. It is originally priced at Rs 5,999. It will be initially available only in India at an introductory price of ₹4,999 with pre-order starting on 4 December on and the final release is expected on 18 December. It is a rechargeable battery and you get a microUSB based charging port at the back.

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