With smart speakers from Apple, Google and Amazon popping from time to time, one household name seems to be tailing in the last place, Microsoft.
Smart speakers made its way on the market way back in 2014 when Amazon first released the Echo. Then several companies have tried to come up with their very own smart speakers. Google came up with the Google Home, and Apple recently announced its HomePod’s release in December. Samsung has also announced a new smart speaker named Bixby.
What makes smart speakers smarter than the regular wireless speakers? It’s powered by a virtual assistant that smartly takes your voice commands. They usually have the capability to play your desired music, tell you about the weather or even read the news.
Is it too late for Microsoft? Maybe not. Microsoft may have been behind in smart speakers, but they’re coming out with a new and first speaker with their voice assistant Cortana. Cortana has existed in PC’s with a Windows operating system, but that’s a different story. Microsoft has been trailing in the last place when it comes to smartphones too. They’ll just have to cross their fingers on their new smart speaker.
Microsoft has paired up with Harman Kardon to create a wireless smart speaker with Cortana as the virtual assistant. With all the rumors coming up, this speaker is officially on and named as Invoke. Known for manufacturing audio devices, Harman Kardon delivers excellent audio performance.
The Harman Kardon Invoke smart speaker with Cortana will have a seven-microphone listening array. This speaker also includes three woofers and three tweeters. It may necessarily mean a better audio performance, but the audio range will be better than Amazon’s Echo. The design helps produce a 360-degree audio and deliver sound from every part of the speaker.
The greatest edge of the Invoke, compared to other smart speakers, is that it allows voice calling. The manufacturers of Invoke partnered with Skype so it can support Skype calls. It has a matte metallic and cylinder shape with a glowing blue light at the top.
The Invoke speaker will be released in the US by fall of 2017. They haven’t announced the possible price of the speaker until the release date is near. But some speculations said that it might be under $200 price range. Microsoft may have been in the last place, but it’s definite that their Invoke speaker is one smart speaker to look out for.
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