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From Kindle Scribe to Halo Rise: some big releases at Amazon hardware launch event

Kindle Scribe & Halo Rise
Amazon 2022 Devices & Services Event was held virtually on Wednesday, September 28.


Ahead of the holiday shopping season in the U.S., the multinational tech giant Amazon unveiled a bunch of new gadgets at its 2022 Devices & Services Event. Here’s a roundup of some of the most exciting announcements.


The new Kindle Scribe that you can write on


Amazon Kindle Scribe


The American multinational tech major unveiled the first-of-its-kind Kindle on which users can now write! Known as Kindle Scribe, the device has a 10.2-inch display and comes with Amazon’s Basic Pen by default. Further, with the new writing feature, users can markup documents, make notes and to-do lists and even write directly on the pages that they are reading. With everyday use, the device can last up to 12 weeks. The Kindle Scribe is up for pre-order in the United States and is priced at $339.


Halo Rise: the bedside sleep tracker


Amazon Halo Rise


At its Wednesday event, Amazon also unwrapped a contactless sleep tracker named Halo Rise. The aim is to provide insight to the users on their sleep patterns and help them in knowing why or why not they are feeling well-rested after waking up. The device senses the environment, including room temperature, humidity, and light, and additionally monitors the breathing patterns of the person sleeping close to it. The company claims that users have complete control of their data. Halo Rise provides users with a sleep score, is compatible with Alexa, and would cost around $140.


The new Echo devices


Echo Dot Kids


The Echo Dot, the Echo Dot with Clock, the Echo Dot Kids, the Echo Studio, and the Echo Auto made a debut at Amazon’s hardware launch event. The two former devices would offer up to two times the bass of the previous generation.  However, one of the coolest features is built-in Eero which essentially turns the device into a WiFi mesh and improves network coverage in users’ homes. Meanwhile, the Echo Dot Kids comes in owl and dragon designs and comes with a one-year subscription to Amazon Kids+. Next in the line is the new high-end Echo Studio that comes with improved sound quality, thanks to the new spatial audio processing technology and frequency range extension. And last, but not least, the all-new Echo Auto. This device has a new design and flexible mounting options and users can further ask Alexa to play music, make calls and get hands-free roadside assistance. All these devices are up for pre-order and shipping will commence next month. While the Dot costs $50, both the Dot with Clock and Echo Dot Kids are priced around $60. Users will have to pay around $200 for the Echo Studio and $55 for the Echo Auto.


Astro robot gets some upgrades


Amazon Astro Robot


Amazon unveiled the company’s first home robot named Astro last year. Now the robot will be able to detect pets so that users can check on their cats and dogs while they are away. “While patrolling, Astro will send you a video clip of what your pet is doing when it sees them, so you can then use Live View to say hi to them, or simply enjoy watching their antics,” Amazon said in a live blog. Further, according to Ken Washington, vice president of Consumer Robotics, Astro comes with “a new multimodal AI capability that will enable it to learn about things in your home that you want it to.” Washington added that “based on what you say while Astro is looking at an object, Astro will learn about the object’s place and state in your home—similar to how humans learn. This will start with doors and windows so that Astro can alert you if something was left open that shouldn’t have been.”


Amazon’s Ring Spotlight Cam Pro


Amazon’s Ring Spotlight Cam Pro


Amazon made three new additions to the Ring camera: Ring Spotlight Cam Pro, the Spotlight Cam Pro Solar and the Spotlight Cam Plus. The new pro-grade security camera – Ring Spotlight Cam Pro – features 3D motion detection that can send motion alerts to users’ phones. Meanwhile, the Spotlight Cam Plus comes with multiple power options including solar, battery, wired, and plug-in. Spotlight Cam Pro is priced around $230, while Spotlight Cam Pro Solar and Spotlight Cam Plus are priced around $250 and $200 respectively.


The new 3rd generation Fire TV Cube


3rd generation Fire TV Cube


The tech giant, after a long wait of around three years, updated the Fire TV Cube, a device that lets users dive straight into their favorite movies and TV shows with their voice. The third-generation Cube is claimed to be 20% faster than the last-generation model and can be controlled by Alexa. It includes support for 4K Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, HDR, and Dolby Atmos audio. Further features like HDMI input port, WiFi 6E support, and Super Resolution Upscaling are also included in the upgrade. Pre-orders for the $140 device have started.


Alexa Voice Remote Pro


Alexa Voice Remote Pro


Another addition to the series of hardware launches by the company is Alexa Voice Remote Pro which is an upgraded version of the popular Alexa remote. According to Amazon, the Pro version comes with a new ‘remote finder’ feature that allows customers to ask Alexa to help them find the remote by playing some noise to help locate the remote. It also features a new backlighting, making it easier to find and use in the dark. Further, the $35 device comes with two customizable buttons to create shortcuts to your favorite streaming apps or channels.


Amazon’s new smart TV: Fire TV Omni QLED


Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED


The company also announced the Amazon Fire TV Omni Series in QLED that features Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ Adaptive for the very first time, improving picture quality, especially in dark scenes. The smart TV works as an Echo as it comes with built-in Alexa and has Alexa Widgets. Interestingly, the TV can transform into a beautiful canvas for artwork when streaming is off, thanks to a gallery of famous landscape paintings. It comes in 65-inch and 75-inch options and starts at $799.99.

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