The war for intelligent connected devices in the home that listen and obey your every spoken command has begun. The Amazon Echo is the poster child and early leader in this space. Don't count out any challengers though: Ivee Voice is looking to wage a battle.
Like the Echo, Ivee Voice is a connected speaker and microphone combination that can control smart home gadgets, stream music, tell you the weather and answer questions based on information found from Wikipedia.
There are a few differences though.
Ivee Voice is currently raising funds through the Indigogo crowdsourcing site. And if you hurry, you can snag an Ivee for $99 plus shipping, which is far less than the current $180 cost of an Amazon Echo.
And you can outfit your home with multiple Ivees to use them as intercoms or play different music in various rooms. While you can have multiple Amazon Echo devices in the home, they don't really work together.
Any device like this is only as good as the services it can connect to though.
From a smarthome perspective, Ivee Voice is up to snuff, working with Nest, Belkin WeMo, Philip's Hue, Logitech Harmony, SmartThings, Wink, and Lowe's Iris.
After that, the product isn't yet as robust as the Echo. There are three connecting services right now for Ivee: Spotify, Uber and an emergency service.
The small, 2.5 Watt speaker in Ivee won't sound as immersive as the 15 Watt unit in the Echo either. You can, however, connect Ivee to a stereo system for louder, richer tunes.
Ultimately, what may determine Ivee's success is the addition of more services. That may be a challenge considering Amazon has the bigger brand name that developers will want to take advantage of.
Even so, it's an interesting product that's been in the works since last year and I'm looking forward to trying one when they arrive in June 2016.