Harman Kardon Invoke speaker with Cortana revealed

Posted May 09, 2017

Microsoft said it would team up a year ago with Harman Kardon as part of a new Internet of Things initiative powered by Cortana.

Like the Echo, Harman Kardon's Invoke is a speaker, but owing to Harman's audiophile roots, it raises the aural ante, including three woofers and three tweeters. Harman highlighted the device's integration with Microsoft's Skype internet-calling service - a feature neither rival has, though each reportedly is considering it for the next generation of their products.

Two colors. As Brad hinted at, the Invoke will come in two color choices: Graphite (Black) and Pearl Silver (White). The Invoke will give a countertop home to Cortana, Microsoft's voice assistant equivalent to Alexa and Google Assistant.

The intelligent personal assistant also sports a do-not-disturb mode and even the settings of the Cortana can be altered by the users of the AI so that they are able to call the other users by their names or even nicknames.

The Invoke, which Microsoft (msft) first announced in December, will compete against Amazon's (amzn) Echo and Google's (goog) Home. Nevertheless, the launch of the upcoming Cortana-powered speakers by the company is highly awaited by every user.

If reports are to be believed, the Invoke is likely to be unveiled at the Microsoft Build developer conference this week.

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Harman Kardon Invoke™ with Cortana by Microsoft will be available in the U.S. only at select retailers and Microsoft Stores in fall 2017.

What are your current thoughts on the Cortana-powered Invoke? The dream of a smart home was finally becoming a reality, giving tech junkies the opportunity to control their calendar, their music, and even their lights with a simple voice command.

You can get more details about the intelligent speaker on the official product page. Cortana also works across devices, including PC and mobile, so she's there whenever you need help.

Amazon Echo and Echo Dot devices are expected to claim a 70.6 percent share of the US market this year.

Voice activated. The Invoke features Harmon Kardon's SONIQUE-branded far-field voice recognition technology for voice activation and control.

For Microsoft, the Invoke aids the company's long-term plans for its Cortana assistant.