Sony began taking preorders for its Xperia Ear wearable, which the struggling smartphone maker describes as “an in-ear personal assistant”.
Xperia Ear is intended to enable users to interact with information without the need to access a smartphone. Among other features, it will read out texts, WhatsApp and Facebook messages, and enable responses to be sent using voice input.
Powered by Sony’s Agent Technology, it responds to verbal commands to initiate calls, perform internet searches and navigate to locations.
The device first saw the light at Mobile World Congress earlier this year, where Sony touted “ambient connected devices” intended to change the way users interact with technology.
Xperia Ear supports a number of languages, including English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian and Japanese.
Shipping will start from mid-November 2016. Xperia Ear costs $199 from Xperia Store, with pre-orders also receiving a $50 discount voucher for Sony smartphones.