Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) introduced several new products and services at its annual product event on Wednesday, including new generative AI features for Alexa, as it looks to compete with tech giants Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT), both of which have or will recently unveil new devices.
Speaking at the U.S. tech giant’s HQ2 in Arlington Virginia, Dave Limp, the senior vice president of devices and services, unveiled the new Echo Show 8, which comes with edge-to-edge glass, new cameras and microphones.
The U.S. tech giant added that the new Echo Show 8 would come with a new language model to speed up Alexa response time by as much as 40%.
In-call translations will also be forthcoming to the Echo Show and other Alexa devices later this year, Amazon explained.
The new device is priced at $150, starts shipping next month, with pre-orders available today.
Amazon (AMZN) also unveiled a new large language model for Alexa, with generative AI features to be focused on conversation and real world apps. The generative AI-based Alexa will launch as a preview in the U.S., Amazon added.
In total, nearly 1B Alexa devices have been purchased, Amazon said at the event.
Heather Zorn, vice president for Alexa at Amazon (AMZN), said customers have used Alexa skills “tens of billions” of times last year and the company is working to make more, including partnering with BMW to bring tools to interact with the car.
The company also showed off a new Alexa Emergency assist service for hands-free help without having to get access to a phone. The people on the other end of the call will have access to user’s medical information and emergency contacts will be notified. The new service will be available in October and cost $5.99 per month.
Amazon also showed off a new version of the Echo Pop speaker, aimed at children. It will cost $50 and it comes with six months of Kids+, Amazon’s kid-focused content subscription. It will be available next month, the company said.
Amazon (AMZN) also showed off two new versions of the Fire Kids tablets, one aimed at younger children and another model for older kids. Both tablets, the Fire HD 10 Kids and Fire HD 10 Kids Pro, will be available next month for $190 and come with a year of Kids+.
The company also took the wraps off a new version of its Echo Frames smart glasses. The new glasses, which do not have a release date yet, will have six hours of battery life and come with multipoint pairing. They will start at $269.99 and come in multiple frames, including sunglasses.
Amazon VP of Fire TV Danial Rausch unveiled several updates to the company’s line of streaming products, including a new sound bar.
The company also unveiled a new Fire TV sound bar, priced at $120 and available today. Additionally, Amazon said that new Fire TV buyers would get six months of the MGM+ streaming service for free.
Rausch also showed off a new Fire TV Stick 4K that has a processor that is 30% faster than the previous version and comes with Wi-Fi 6 connectivity. It is also available to pre-order today and costs $50.
A higher-end version of the Fire TV Stick was unveiled, the Fire TV Stick Max. It has Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, Dolby Vision and Atmos audio and an upgraded processor. It costs $60 and is available for pre-order today.
Rausch also said that Fire TV will get a revamped search interface, set to come later this year.
Mimi Swain, vice president of Ring, unveiled several new products, while revealing the fact that sales of Ring and Blink products grew 20% over the past year.
Swain showed off a new range extender for cameras, known as the Blink Sync Module Pro. The Blink Sync Module Pro will be available next year and costs $50.
A $30 battery pack extension and $160 floodlight camera were also introduced, with both available for pre-order today.
Amazon (AMZN) also showed off the Eero Max 7 Wi-Fi router. It will cost $599.99 and come in packs of one, two or three.
Amazon’s director of smart home Charlie French, took the wraps off new products, including the Echo Hub, a wall-mounted smart home controller that comes with Alexa and an eight-inch touchscreen. The Echo Hub will be available “later this year” and set shoppers back $180.
Amazon (AMZN) shares were down fractionally in mid-day trading on Wednesday.