Amazon will head into the holiday shopping season with a simple wish list: It wants voice-controlled devices featuring its digital assistant Alexa to become as ubiquitous in people's homes as televisions.
The online retailer is slashing prices to undercut Google, introducing better acoustics in response to a forthcoming Apple speaker and rolling out new formats to appeal to different tastes and needs.
Amazon so far has proven far better at discounting a potpourri of goods online than it has been at making its own devices. Most notably, it tanked in its attempt to make a smartphone, putting it at a disadvantage against Google and Apple - the makers of Android and the iPhone, respectively - in the battle to stay connected with consumers when they're on the go.
But Amazon has found a way to play a bigger role in people's homes with the Echo, an internet-connected speaker starring Alexa as a concierge who can do everything from order a pizza to turn out the lights on command. Amazon now aims to erase the price advantage with the next generation of the Echo.
The new version will sell for $100, a 44 percent reduction from the $180 price for the current version. Google's Home speaker currently sells for $130.