Amazon is reportedly working on a voice-controlled mobile Alexa robot, codenamed Vesta.
Originally reported on Bloomberg last year, current prototypes of the bot are about waist-high, feature advanced cameras and computer vision, and can navigate through homes like driverless cars.
Despite being set for release earlier this year, a new report on Bloomberg now states that the bots are not yet ready for mass production, though the company has recently pulled engineers from other projects to work on Vesta.
In terms of performance, those close to the project have said that the Vesta “could be a sort of mobile Alexa, accompanying customers in parts of their home where they don’t have Echo devices”.
It is expected to offer all the same kind of functionality you’d get with an Echo device, including calling, timers and music playback.
In other news, Amazon is also developing a higher quality version of the Echo speaker, which the company plans to release sometime next year.
Bloomberg states that the cylindrical speaker will be wider than existing Echo products in order to fit in extra speaker components.
Both devices are being developed by the company’s R&D arm Amazon Lab126, based in Sunnyvale, California.