Amazon is working on its own wireless earbuds that will offer direct access to the company’s Alexa smart assistant, according to a Bloomberg report out this week. The earbuds are said to be similar to Apple’s Airpods, and could launch as early as this year.
Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The earbuds will reportedly work similar to Amazon’s Echo speakers, and respond to the “Alexa” wake word to access the company’s smart assistant. Users will be able to ask for music, weather reports and even offer voice-based shopping functionality.
The company is said to put a lot of effort into the product’s sound quality, with the goal of making them sound better than Apple’s Airpods. At the same time, Amazon may try to undercut the Airpod’s $199 price point.
Amazon has had a mixed history with its own consumer electronics. The company has generally done very well in areas where it has been able to establish a new product, such as the Kindle e-book reader and the Echo smart speaker.
Competing with existing products on the other hand has been a bit harder, with the most notable flop being the company’s ill-fated Fire phone, which got discontinued just a year after its 2014 introduction.