Amazon is about to add its popular voice assistant Alexa to more than half a dozen new products — devices that range from a microwave oven to an in-car gadget, all of which will reportedly be unveiled at a company event later this month.
The news comes via CNBC, which reports that at least eight new Alexa-powered products are on the way which include a subwoofer, an amplifier and a receiver. The company is expected to show them off at an event this month, CNBC goes on to note, according to an internal Amazon document.
“The new devices reflect Amazon’s ambition to make its Alexa voice technology ubiquitous by focusing on areas where people spend most of their time — at home and in the car,” the outlet reports. “Alexa was initially considered a geeky experiment at Amazon. Now it is one of the most popular voice assistants, leading the growth of the burgeoning smart speaker market, which is expected to be worth $30 billion by 2024, according to Global Market Insights.”
Worth noting is the milestone this set of new products represents for Amazon, which would as a result be moving into the home appliance market for the first time. As the CNBC report notes, the new products also potentially strike at established competitors like Sonos and GE. Sonos has an Alexa-compatible amplifier and subwoofer, while GE has a microwave that can be connected to Alexa.
Amazon, of course, declined to comment about the news.
Speaking of the home appliance market, we should note this is not Amazon’s first involvement with that market, not by a long shot. The company is also working on robots of some kind for the home, per Bloomberg. Amazon also earlier this year bought the smart doorbell maker Ring.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in July the company wants customers “to be able to use Alexa wherever they are,” which adds some obvious context to the new products in the pipeline. “There are now tens of thousands of developers across more than 150 countries building new devices using the Alexa Voice Service,” Bezos added at the time, “and the number of Alexa-enabled devices has more than tripled in the past year.”
It’s not just new products for the home the company is working on, meanwhile. Amazon is also stepping up partnerships with home installation companies and home builders. As an example — earlier this year, it teamed up with the home builder Lennar to add Echo speakers in some new homes.
All of which underscores how the company, pun very much intended, is certainly at home sniffing out opportunities wherever it can to put new Alexa-powered gadgets in the hands of consumers.