Microsoft clearly missed an opportunity here; just look at GE Lighting’s new LED table lamp (yes, that what it’s being called now). It looks just like the Cortana ring that you would find within Windows 10 or Windows 10 Mobile (or perhaps like one of those hipster Dyson fans).
But instead, the GE LED table lamp has Amazon Alexa Voice Service (AVS) infused its base. As a result, the device has a built-in microphone and speaker for feedback and playing music, although expect to hear audio quality more in line with the diminutive Echo Dot.
So rather than having a tall, cylindrical object reminisce of the alien ship in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home sitting on your end table, you actually have a useful lamp coupled with a device that can read aloud sports scores, play music, or even open your garage door. Given the thousands of Alexa skills that are at your disposal, there’s plenty that can be accomplished with this stylish smart home device.
“We’re excited to work with GE Lighting to bring Alexa to their LED lamp and enable new types of voice experiences,” remarked Aaron Brown, Director of Amazon Alexa. “Voice is the future of home automation and the combination of Alexa with the GE LED table lamp, provides people with a simple and frictionless way to interact with their homes.”
“It’s really about simplifying and extending an experience for consumers, allowing them to add smart capabilities throughout the home through a really simple form factor Consumers don’t need a cell phone, a special switch or a hub. They just need their voice,” added Jeff Patton, General Manager of Connected Home Products for GE Lighting.
This is by no means the final design for the LED table lamp, but we like what we see so far. GE Lightning plans to have a production version ship to customers during the second quarter of 2017. Hopefully by then, it will have a more inventive name.