Verizon’s Alexa-enabled Smart Display will launch in beta this fall
Verizon has been working on a smart display with 4G connectivity for a while. We got our first look at the device earlier this year in March when it received certification from the FCC. At the time, we learned that the device would feature an 8-inch 1280×800 display, 4GB RAM, a front-facing camera with a privacy shutter, 16GB of onboard storage, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and 4G connectivity. The FCC filing also mentioned Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa and a “Hi Verizon” voice prompt. But it revealed no further details. Now, Verizon has finally confirmed that the Smart Display is real, and it’s coming this fall.
According to CNET, Verizon announced the Smart Display during Amazon’s Alexa Live event. The company confirmed the device’s specifications during the event, including the 8-inch 1280×800 display, 4GB RAM, and 16GB storage. The company also confirmed that the Verizon Smart Display would feature a front-facing camera with a privacy shutter and a low-power 4G LTE modem. However, the modem will only be used to “ensure that the Verizon Smart Display can communicate with Verizon’s back-end systems should there be an internet outage.”
Verizon further confirmed that the Smart Display is built on Amazon’s Alexa platform. As such, it will likely offer support for all the features you get with an Echo smart display. In addition, the device will respond to the “Hi, Verizon” wake word, and it will also be able to help users set up home internet services or get tech support through video conferencing. Furthermore, Verizon confirmed that the device will feature a speaker, and it will work with multiple streaming platforms. But the company didn’t reveal the names of supported platforms.
As far as availability is concerned, Verizon says that the Smart Display will launch “in beta” this fall for a “select group” of Fios customers. The company plans to release the device for more users next year. At the moment, Verizon hasn’t shared any pricing details.