Is this Facebook's smart speaker? Patent application reveals possible design

Despite the recent Cambridge Analytica data scandal, Facebook is still expected to launch a voice-enabled smart speaker at some point. It was expected to be unveiled at the company’s F8 conference in May, but due to other recent events, that may now not be the case. Regardless, a patent application for an “Electronic Device” from 2016 could reveal what the final product will look like.

The patent application shows the as-yet-unnamed smart speaker from all angles, with the first showing it sitting horizontally with what looks like speaker holes on top. Facebook’s speaker has long been expected to be a rival to the Amazon Echo Show, offering a way for Facebook users to video chat with one another. Of course, that would mean the company’s speaker sporting a screen, which isn’t obvious from this application.

Figure 7 shows what could be the speaker standing vertically, with a screen and some buttons sitting beneath, however this drawing is labelled as ‘bottom side’, so seems unlikely for now.

Bear in mind this patent application was filed in 2016, so there is a good chance the design could have changed since then, but it does at least add weight to a speaker being released some time in the future.

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