is a smart speaker developed by the consumer website and media service Amazon. The Echo device resembles a tall cylinder speaker, complete with a seven-piece microphone array. The aim of the Echo device is to connect to a voice-controlled intelligent personal assistant service called Alexa. The Echo speaker enables voice interaction, music playback, making to-do lists, setting alarms, streaming podcasts, playing audiobooks, as well as providing weather, traffic and other real time information. The device became generally available worldwide in the latter part of 2016. building on this, the Dot is a hands-free
, voice-controlled device that uses the same far-field voice recognition as Amazon Echo.
In order to increase the portability of the Alexa service a new product has been launched (April 20, 2017). This is the first battery-powered speaker created for Amazon Echo Dot. The new device is termed "Vaux" and it is intended, the developers told Digital Journal, to allow "users to cut the cord and set their Dot free." This is through mobility and improved audio quality.
Vaux is intended to be straightforward to use, with an easy plug-and-play set-up. To use the device a user can place their Dot into the top of the Vaux, then plug in the internal connectors and the device becomes fully functional. The device enables the user to both play music and to access Alexa from room to room. The battery life is stated to be 6 hours, which is the general level for remote speakers.
With the launch
, Vaux is available in comes two colors (designed to match the color scheme of the Dot): carbon and ash. The product retails for $49. Speaking about the device, Kevin Brennan, who is the boss of the developer Ninety7, stated
: "Amazon’s Echo Dot is a phenomenal device. By improving its audio quality and facilitating mobility, VAUX elevates the Dot from gadget to indispensable home companion and allows for a different look than what is currently available in the Amazon family." He adds: "AUX improves communication with Alexa and, with enhanced portability, puts her within speaking distance, anywhere in the home. VAUX unleashes the potential of the Dot."