A premium, portable Echo speaker has been at the top of my Alexa wishlist for some time. Following the summer release of the Sonos Move and Bose Portable Home Speaker, I hoped Amazon would've unveiled one alongside the all-new Echo and Echo Studio earlier this fall.
It seems my prayers have been answered at last, but there's a major asterisk. The forthcoming Echo Input Portable (opens in new tab) will only be sold in India.
Amazon hasn't released a portable Echo device in the U.S. since the underwhelming Echo Tap, but now it seems the company is taking another stab at a moveable Alexa.
The Echo Input Portable Speaker packs a 4800mAh battery and advertises 10 hours of non-stop music playing. Like all Echo speakers, the Echo Input Portable Speaker will benefit from all the best Alexa skills.
Amazon's new speaker costs 4,999 rupees, which converts to about $70. Though the price could look quite different when it becomes available in Western markets.
Currently in the U.S., there are several portable smart speakers made by companies other than Amazon that have Alexa built in, such as the Ultimate Ears Megablast and the Cavalier Maverick. However, none of them have all of Alexa's capabilities, which an Amazon-made speaker would presumably have.
There's no indication of when the Echo Input Portable Speaker could arrive here in the US. But if we can plug Alexa into a wall with the Echo Flex and embed Alexa into cars with the Echo Auto, there's no reason we shouldn't be able to carry the voice assistant around, too.