Smart Home

Royole’s smart speaker has a cool wraparound display, but is it worth the price?

We’ve already seen a lot of cool stuff at CES 2020 so far, from a toilet paper-toting robot to a cooler that will chill a bottle of wine or beer in under 5 minutes, but the new smart speaker by Royole is pretty special. The tube-like Mirage Smart Speaker works with Alexa, just like an Amazon Echo, but instead of being wrapped in fabric, it has a touchscreen display.

Mirage Smart Speaker with black background

Details about the new smart speaker are spotty right now, but we do know that it has a 7.8-inch (1,920 x 1,440) AMOLED flexible touchscreen that wraps around the device. The screen can display the time and, we imagine, messages, photos and more. The design makes the speaker look futuristic, as if the sleek, black cylinder is floating between two rings. A look at the back, though, shows that, unfortunately, it isn’t floating, but we still like the design. It’s a real step up from other smart speakers on the market. Even the top-performing smart speakers, like Google Home, tend to stick with the fabric-wrapped or plain plastic cylinder design.

Along with the cool screen, the speaker features three 48mm full-range drivers and a passive bass radiator to make your tunes sound sweet, along with a 5MP camera. We’re guessing the camera is for video chatting, though it would be cool if it could also also used to detect hand motion commands or facial recognition for screen customization like the super smart Google Nest Hub Max. Those concerned with safety will like that the camera has a mute switch that can stop the camera from working. On top of the speaker you’ll find volume buttons, just like with most smart speakers.

According to reporting by The Verge, Royole says the new smart speaker/smart display will be available in the second quarter of 2020 for a whopping $899. Since no one quite knows how good the speaker quality of the Mirage is just yet, it’s hard to say whether the price is worth it. The cool factor may lure in some people, but we’ll hold our judgment until we learn a little bit more about it.

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