Samsung Electronics is apparently working on a new Bluetooth speaker which, unlike the usual Bluetooth speakers built by the manufacturer, seems to take advantage of speech recognition technology, indicating that the product could fit in the same category as the Amazon Echo smart speakers. The device was discovered by tech blog Ausdroid in the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) database earlier this week, and according to the documents the product is called "Samsung Scoop".
The documents submitted by Samsung to the FCC reveal quite a few details in regards to what the Scoop is all about, and even include a user guide and a handful of photos showcasing the device from different angles. Needless to say, the Samsung Scoop is a Bluetooth speaker with a cylindrical form factor, sporting a microphone which indicates that the device could take advantage of voice recognition technology. According to the device layout schematic found within the user guide, the Samsung Scoop is equipped with an indicator light, a speaker, two volume buttons, a "Play" button that also acts as a Bluetooth pairing button, an audio cable jack, a power button, a charger port, and of course a microphone. The microphone hints at the possibility that the Samsung Scoop could be a smart wireless speaker similar to Amazon Echo, however, the user guide makes no mention of a companion application required for pairing the device. Instead, the guide only explains how users can pair devices to the speaker via Bluetooth using the Play/Bluetooth pairing button.
Since its release in 2014, the Amazon Echo had received numerous software updates that have expanded the speaker's functionality to great extents. Roughly one year ago in August 2015, the Amazon Echo was updated to support Samsung's SmartThings connected home technologies, so the big question at this point is whether the Samsung Scoop will offer similar functionality. Aside from the inclusion of a microphone, there's no clear indication that Samsung Scoop will be a smart speaker, and besides, Samsung doesn't have a lot of background in speech recognition technology which is essential for this type of product. What's clear, judging by the FCC documents and pictures, is that the speaker will be portable given the inclusion of a leather wrist strap, and that it should be nearing its market debut sooner rather than later.