There was a slightly puzzling report on Bloomberg last Friday claiming that Amazon “is developing a higher quality version of the Echo Speaker” that will be released by next year.
“Prototypes of the cylindrical speaker are wider than the current Echo to squeeze in additional components including at least four tweeters,” reported Bloomberg.
“Amazon has previously attempted to improve the Echo’s sound with tweaks and offered a standalone subwoofer and device that links the speakers to a stereo.” Why puzzling? Because Amazon already has a higher-quality version of its Echo: the Echo Plus, which launched in 2017 and then got a second-generation refresh a year later.
Bloomberg’s claim that the basic Echo has “lost some ground to the Sonos One, Apple Inc. HomePod and Google Home Max — all of which claim to deliver superior audio” also jibes, a little, with the sense that if anything the smart-speaker market is skewing more towards cheaper, lower-end devices like the Echo Dot and Google Home Mini. All that said, it’s likely that Amazon *is* working on an Echo with better sound, whether that’s just a third-gen Echo Plus or a brand new product.