Amazon Touchscreen Echo Leak; Smart Speaker Market Set to Double; Spray On Touchpads

As with all tech companies, Amazon plays with different versions of products. Thenextweb.com got its hands on a pic of one version for the upcoming Alexa powered touchscreen Echo, and the tech media collectively threw up. The wedge shaped gadget with a 7 inch screen has been universally panned. A prior leak had a short round tower with a smaller touchscreen angled on top. Let’s hope the previous leak is closer to what actually drops…probably later this month. It is said to be equipped to make video calls, and may have visual recognition, like the hapless Fire phone.

With a touchscreen Echo in the pipeline, the Google speaker finding homes, and Apple reported to be working on a high end smart speaker, 9to5mac.com has picked up a report from Reuters that says smart speaker use will double in the US this year. They are looking at 35.6 million. Amazon is expected to hold a little over 70% of the market.

Want a touchpad somewhere? Just spray it on! That’s the concept behind Electrick (with a ‘k’), a design from some brainy folks at Carnegie Mellon University. Techcrunch.com says it is mainly the brainchild of a PhD student named Yang Zhang, and it uses small electrodes attached to the edges of a painted surface. You can put a touchpad on wood, plastic, dry wall…reportedly even Play Doh and Jell-O. The tech is set to be demonstrated at a conference in Denver.

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