Amazon Echo Look Will Let Alexa Help You Look Your Best Every Day, But It Raises Privacy Concerns


Amazon is adding another device to its range of Alexa-powered smart speakers, and it's called Echo Look.

Besides the original Echo speaker's functions of reading the news or weather forecasts, it's designed to provide some fashion advice to boot. With a camera at hand, it can take snaps of users' outfits and give a second opinion on them to make sure they look their best, thanks to the service Style Check.

However, one more smart device equipped with a camera and mic invading people's homes does raise some privacy concerns.

Amazon Echo Look: What Can It Do?

First and foremost, the Echo Look can take photos and videos with these two voice commands: "Alexa, take a picture" and "Alexa, take a video."

Amazon loaded it with a "computer vision-based background blur" feature to emphasize focus on your outfits. Also, it can provide a 360-degree view of your look via your smartphone and accompanying app with the recording function.

Similar to the retailer's Outfit Compare tool, Style Check lets you get "advice from fashion specialists" at a tap of a button when you submit two photos for comparison. It relies on machine learning algorithms instead of a human's touch, though.

Take note that the images will be saved locally and in the Amazon Web Services cloud.

As for the hardware itself, it sports a mic, speaker, camera, four LEDs, and an off button for the mic and camera. It's also packaged with adjustable base mounts, so you have the option to either stick it on a wall or just have it stand.

Echo Look Privacy Concerns

Privacy issues are inherent in connected smart devices, but Amazon says the Echo Look is backed by the same security systems it uses across its services. Still, that doesn't mean it's completely safe from hackers.

While the mic and camera button on the Echo Look is a great addition, it's far from enough to keep your privacy safe from intruders. Cybercriminals have been known to be capable of remotely accessing cameras to spy on people, after all.

As evidence to the dangers of the online world, even FBI Director James Comey and Facebook head honcho Mark Zuckerberg put tape over their laptops' cameras for good measure.

What's more, the device doesn't only store your images in the AWS cloud until they're deleted but also your audio recordings. That said, you're going to have to remove them as well if you want to prevent the cloud from having too much of your info there.

To sum things up, Amazon is getting more serious about the fashion game with the Echo Look, and it's rolling out a nifty device targeted at fashionistas. However, they raise some privacy concerns that could put users in dire situations.

If those potential issues didn't scare you off, the Echo Look is now available at Amazon with a $199.99 price tag.

Feel free to hit us up in the comments section below and let us know if you're planning on nabbing the new smart device Amazon brought to the table.

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