Amazon, after a little less than a month (after assuming the sales of its Echo Wall Clock,) announced that it is now back on sale in the United States at its original price of $30. Amazon has not publicly announced the possible causes of the problem, but it says that a new software update was designed to improve its performance and connectivity.
“Customers with an Echo Wall Clock connected to a compatible Echo device received this update automatically,” an Amazon spokesperson added.
There is nothing traditional about the Echo Wall Clock (except that it is an analog clock). It does not have microphone or speakers of its own, unlike other Echo devices, since it is purely an accessory that uses Bluetooth technology to pair with an existing Echo speaker (the Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Plus, Echo Show, Echo Spot or Echo Input,) to be exact.
Users can order the speaker to set a timer, and they’ll see that the Echo Wall Clock will display a visual countdown on the LED lights that circle the outer edge of the clock’s face.
However, it was observed that those timers were not working and displaying as expected for the clock’s early adopters.
CNET reported through their product review of the Echo Wall Clock that they had experienced the issue themselves when their team tested the product early January. “It kept accurate time after being paired with an Echo speaker, but it wouldn’t show our Alexa timers, and only worked as advertised after swapping the batteries out,” they wrote.
Other users have reported similar experience and said that they had to regularly swap the batteries out whenever the Echo Wall Clock loses its connection.
“It’s fine to have a utilitarian out-of-box experience,” CNET‘s Rich Brown noted in his review of the device, “but maybe lock down the ‘batteries make it go’ part before you ship.”
With the updated software, Amazon is expecting to fix the connectivity problem of its Echo Wall Clocks. Existing users who already bought the product should look for a firmware update that should automatically push through the next time the clock connects with their Echo speaker. /apr