Sony Still Thinks There's a Market for Tiny Rolling Speakers

Illustration for article titled Sony Still Thinks There's a Market for Tiny Rolling Speakers

The Rolly, a dancing, rolling, glowing MP3 player, was yet another intriguing product in a long line of curiosities from Sony. Unfortunately, it wasn't intriguing enough for consumers to actually spend $400 on it. But someone at Sony is obviously still carrying a torch for the Rolly, because the company's new rolling Bluetooth speaker seems eerily familiar to a product that already failed.

But the new Sony BSP60 might be more accurately compared to Amazon's Echo, since the device is far more than just a wireless speaker on wheels. When paired with an Android smartphone it uses voice recognition for basic functions like setting alarms, forecasting the weather, and checking a user's messages. It also functions as a speakerphone, which is pretty common for a Bluetooth speaker these days, and those tiny wheels underneath let it scoot around on a flat surface, presumably in sync with what music is playing.

So compared to the Rolly, Sony's BSP60 is packing far more functionality, and useful functionality if the popularity of Amazon's Echo is any indication. The only thing that hasn't changed between the two devices is the $400 price tag when it's available in a few months, which might mean consumer's interest in such a device won't change either.

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[Sony via Akihabara News]

Illustration for article titled Sony Still Thinks There's a Market for Tiny Rolling Speakers

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I have one of the earlier/cheaper spherical BT speakers from Sony, the SRS-BTV5 (see pic below), and I absolutely hate it. No matter where you put it, it rolls off. If you plug a USB cable or audio cable into it, it tilts over. It's a completely idiotic design. Most of the time if I want to use it, I have to go searching for it under furniture. Oh, and the sound quality sucks too.