When Amazon originally launched the Echo, their smart Bluetooth speaker-cum-assistant, it was unclear just what they wanted to do with it. SInce then of course, Alexa, the assistant that makes the Echo speakers so useful in the first place, has learnt all manner of tricks and can be used to control your home, adjust your schedule, and of course, purchase things from Amazon for you. The original Echo – or the smaller Tap version – wasn't exactly that great as a Bluetooth speaker, and it wouldn't be most people's first choice to listen to their favorite tunes on, but that's just exactly what Amazon thinks people will do, according to a new report.
Just like Apple, Google and Spotify, Amazon runs their own music service, but unlike their competitors however, it's thrown in as a part of the larger Amazon Prime service. This gives users access to Amazon's video on-demand service, which is now running its own original content, as well as faster delivery at no extra cost when shopping online, all of which – including Prime Music – costs $99 a year. According to a new report though, Amazon is looking to offer a separate music subscription, for just $5 or so, that will only work with an Echo speaker. Charging less than the majority of companies for such a service would make a lot of sense, not least due to the fact that with just access to the service from the connected speaker, it wouldn't be all that enjoyable, hence the lower price tag. On top of this, it could also help users to see the Echo as a more useful device and further help push the overall Alexa platform.
Earlier this year, Amazon spun off their Prime Video into a standalone subscription package for $9 a month, and this latest report suggests that come September, Amazon will launch the same for their Prime Music service as well as this cheaper option for the Echo speakers only. A $9 service for Prime Music would be popular, but it wouldn't exactly stand out from the crowd, but a $4 or $5 a month service on the Echo could turn some heads. Regardless, it looks like we'll have to wait and see regarding any new subscription offers from Amazon.