Canary Smart Speaker concept inspired by a bird, can do two-way conversations

The Canary is known for its beautiful feathers, but it is more famous for the sound it makes. The bird sings beautifully, and believe it or not; canaries were used to sense danger in coal mines before. So when people say “Canary in a coal mine,” it usually means someone or something that offers an early warning for failure or danger.

This Canary Smart Speaker is another concept design inspired by nature. The smart speaker industry is expanding, and we can see consumer demand increasing. We have come to a point where designers and brands can experiment with speaker aesthetics as much as the features and tech specs.

Designer: Behrad Ghodsi

Canary Smart Speaker Concept Details

At first glance, you will think the Canary is a minimalist megaphone because of its simple design. It takes on the form of the bird standing tall white singing. And like the canary bird, this smart speaker will provide audio that can entertain, inform, educate, or even warn about danger.

The Canary Smart Speaker is a concept design for Google. It boasts a different design from the previous Google Home speakers that already came out as the Google Home Mini, the original Google Home, and the Google Home/Nest Hub. The Canary could be something the tech giant would release with its simple, fresh, and minimalist aesthetics. Google should probably check this out and consider but with a few tweaks here and there.

Canary Smart Speaker Details

Canary Smart Speaker Concept Design

The cone-shaped main body of the speaker appears to be either the tweer or the subwoofer. It nests on a log-shaped portion where the sound comes from. There is a button for volume control plus four LED lights that indicate the volume level on the right side. There are buttons for Back, Stop, Play, Pause, and Forward on the left side that appear to light up when in use for easy identification.

Canary Smart Speaker Concept Design

The Canary Smart Speaker concept can do anything other Google Home models can do. It features the Google Assistant, so it means the device can engage in two-way conversations with the user. It can also work with other third-party apps and services with intelligent integration and voice control, allowing home automation and more.

Canary Smart Speaker Concept Images

This Canary will act as an alert for any situation depending on your need and preference. Need background music for work or during your workout? Ask Canary to play your favorite songs or playlist. Do you need to know the weather before heading out? The Canary can tell you the temperature, precipitation, humidity level, and even wind speed.

Canary Smart Speaker Packaging

Canary Smart Speaker Whats Inside the Box

Canary Smart Speaker Concept Design

White Canary Smart Speaker

Canary Smart Speaker Design

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This smart speaker concept takes you to the moon with its visual and tactile tricks

Most smart speakers are designed to blend into your room’s decor, but this concept stands out from the crowd to give even your fingers a treat.

In order to make people more comfortable with smart speakers, manufacturers designed them to look more like regular living room artifacts. Their appearances blended well into whatever motif you might have going on, especially if those leaned more towards the minimalist side. Their fabric-covered bodies also easily reminded one of upholstery, which helped complement their place in the living space.

Designer: Arshad Asaaf

In order to minimize the visual clutter that typical physical controls would have on such a minimalist speaker, many brands opted to use nearly invisible touch controls or at least inconspicuous buttons on the surface of the speaker. This design has become commonplace and even mundane to the point of being almost boring. They also took for granted one of the most important senses of the human body, the sense of touch.

This smart speaker concept injects an element of fantasy into the device to make it not only more interesting but also more approachable. Named after the Portuguese word for “moon,” the LUA speaker immediately catches your attention with its less than minimal design. The bottom half represents the dark side of the moon and is covered with the typical fabric that signifies where the sound comes out. And just like the “bright” side of the moon that’s always visible, the upper half is where the indicators and controls are.

The LUA smart speaker isn’t a perfectly spherical form, though, with both top and bottom edges chopped to be flat. The top surface is actually made of a soft material covered with fabric, and this is where your finger will do the talking. Envisioned as a pressure-sensitive area, the controls don’t require that you accurately press a specific area to trigger an action. You can press or swipe anywhere and press soft or hard, and the computer brains inside will interpret whether you want to turn the volume up or are trying to skip to the next track.

The flat bottom of the speaker is where it connects with the wireless charging station that also doubles as a levitation platform for LUA. The idea is that the strong magnets in the base and in the bottom of the speaker activate to repel each other once the speaker is fully charged. This gives LUA an almost magical character that clearly fits its name.

What’s interesting about this concept is that almost all the technologies it references already exist, from pressure-sensitive fabric to levitating speakers. It probably just needs someone to actually take that idea and transform it into a product that will undoubtedly earn fans thanks to its novel approach to the smart speaker user experience.

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The RUM Project is a speaker-and-security camera system in one

Bluetooth speakers have proven to be very convenient and versatile. We can’t live without these audio devices and we’ll only look for better ones as technology improves and more needs arise. We like those portable ones but are powerful enough to start a house party.

The big brands have been introducing products for audiophiles left and right but they can be very expensive. We know there are startups that have been introducing new speakers that offer excellent audio experience in unique forms. The latest on our radar is the RUM Project. No, it’s not the kind that can get you drunk. It’s the kind that will make you in love with music more or dance to your heart’s content.

Designers: Rume Studio

The RUM Project is a concept Bluetooth pendant speaker that features a 360-degree surveillance camera. It’s a combo-gadget that offers a number of conveniences apart from audio playback. Business owners will probably love this because of the discreet feature. People will think it’s just a speaker but they don’t know it’s also a camera.

There is the issue of privacy but most establishments should really have security cameras. Unfortunately, some customers get scared when they see too many cameras so it may be best if you choose something that’s not very obvious. The RUM appears to be more consumer-friendly and won’t scare the customers away. Not that people don’t want them because they’re going to commit a crime, it’s just that they don’t want prying eyes when they’re shopping or eating.

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The RUM Project offers several functions but it also serves as decor. It can be placed alongside pendant lamps on the ceiling. It solves the problem of connection and cables by hiding what needs to be hidden. It’s also easy to control using a dedicated remote control so streaming is continuous when needed.

The Bluetooth speaker/security camera delivers clean aesthetics as the design and materials can adapt to any interior. There is a 3D-camera module below the speaker module. It appears like another smart speaker but this one doesn’t “talk back” and do things for you. What it can do is play your favorite music.

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A smart speaker concept you might actually want to keep track of your face at home




There are ongoing privacy concerns about smart speakers and smart displays that always listen in on you, but this concept actually has a valid reason to.

Speakers and screens that act as hubs for our smart home are becoming more common these days. From Amazon to Google to even Apple, there is no shortage of companies that have products always ready to listen to your voice or even see your face. Those scenarios can sound a bit uncomfortable and almost frightening for some people, but a brand design agency is trying to reframe these technologies in a more positive light by giving smart assistants a more friendly face, almost literally, too.

Designer: Recipe Design

The Soove doesn’t look like your typical smart speaker aside from its conical shape and the customary use of fabric that wraps around the product. It has an odd collar-like ring near the top, actually a sound cone that makes it more sensitive to almost every audio nuance around it. The most eye-catching part of the design, however, is the black glass ball on top and the two eyes that seem to be looking back at you and express some emotions by changing the eyes’ shape.




This gives Soove a more friendly face compared to the more utilitarian smart speaker and smart display designs. It is both disarming and comforting, looking like a friend that’s ready to lend you an ear on your stressful day. That’s exactly the kind of emotions that its designers want to evoke because the smart speaker is more concerned about your well-being than turning the lights on or off.

In addition to listening for audible cues, Soove uses facial tracking to recognize a person’s emotions through their facial expression as well as physical states. It can also take into account data coming from other smart devices like wearables or smart appliances. Soove will then adjust the house’s lighting, temperature, or music to create a more pleasant atmosphere or recommend that the owner take a nap or get some fresh air.

Rather than making a blanket condemnation of face-tracking technologies, Recipe Design wants to demonstrate how they can be put to good use as well. The designer says that “SOOVE aims to change the meaning of existing face-tracking technology by reframing it as a positive enabler beyond surveillance and security. By reframing existing domestic and commercial surveillance technology there is potential to disrupt home monitoring and create an innovative new category designed to influence and drive sensory cues around the smart home to improve our sleep behaviors.”

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This levitating smart assistant concept makes smart speakers look antiquated

What better way to show how smart assistants are the future than with a futuristic speaker that seems to defy the laws of gravity.

When Amazon came out with the first-ever smart speaker housing a smart assistant, there was a bit of bewilderment over its place in our modern life. Half a decade later, it almost seems inconceivable to have a modern home that doesn’t have either some smart speaker or at least a way to get in touch with Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, and everything in between. While these smart assistants have evolved in the past years, the design of speakers hasn’t seen many notable changes in terms of design. One concept, however, breaks out of the mold and aims to make the smart assistant truly look futuristic while still setting a foot down on familiar and comforting materials.

Designer: Alex Casabò

That’s not to say that smart speakers are ugly, especially since many of them are intentionally designed to be more aesthetic than most speakers. The shapes for these speakers, however, seem to be limited to a few basic forms like cylinders or rectangles. There are some exceptions, like the BeoSound Emerge, but this beautiful book-like audio product is more the exception than the norm.

You don’t have to go overboard to envision a more interesting take on smart speakers. Floating speakers aren’t exactly new by now, though they are pretty much novelty items. Designer Alex Casabò, however, took that idea and put a familiar smart speaker design convention, creating something that is both mystifying but strangely also calming.

Unlike most floating speakers, the sphere that hovers above its metallic base is covered with what looks like a coarse material that gives the impression that it’s made of granite or something similar. In addition to evoking a sense of wonder over something heavy that floats in the air, the somewhat organic and rough texture creates a satisfying visual contrast to the smooth and lustrous box beneath. It also calls to mind the familiar design of some smart speakers, particularly those that use fabric to blend in with some room decorations.

The concept also has room for visual feedback, not just in the form of icons but also text. This reinforces the image of something that is so futuristic it almost looks like magic, creating a beautiful contrast in themes. With an organic sphere floating on top of a metallic block and a design that’s novel yet also familiar, the levitating smart assistant concept is almost like a product of contrasting elements that have been harmoniously mixed to enchanting effect.

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This minimalist wooden board offers a interior-friendly way to control your home with Alexa




The last thing you probably expected is for a beautiful piece of wood to be your control dashboard for your smart home.

The Internet of Things has slowly but surely invaded our homes in the guise of smart lighting, dynamic photo frames, and, of course, smart speakers. While many of these are designed to look stylish and handsome, most of them carry an aesthetic that often clashes with minimalist rooms or decor. Smart speakers are perhaps the biggest culprits in this regard, but a Japanese company has found a solution that lets you put Alexa-powered smart speakers out of sight.

Designer: mui Lab

mui looks like an unassuming block of wood, but it’s actually just as talented as a smart speaker. Actually, it can do more than what most voice-only speakers can, like the Amazon Echo, because it has a touch panel on its front surface. Unlike a busy and overwhelming touch screen, however, the mui board presents visual feedback as monochromatic icons and text in a dot-matrix style that matches the board’s minimalist aesthetic.

More than just being a novel way to present a smart home hub, mui offers an equally unique approach to mixing nature and technology. Rather than the usual cold elements of a tablet, a phone, or even a smart speaker, the wooden board adds a warm and almost human touch to interact with devices and appliances. Its designers want to evoke joy and calm, feelings that should be associated with the home in the first place.

Despite its minimalist appearance, the mui is by no means minimal in features. In addition to its own mobile app, mui Lab is introducing a new “calm” interface that turns the board into a visual interface for connected Amazon Alexa speakers. That’s in addition to the original mui Platform’s compatibility with the new Matter smart home platform.




Inspired by Taoist philosophy, the mui board offers a refreshing spin on how we interact with our smart homes, basically by doing or showing almost nothing. It’s not going to appeal to people who prefer seeing everything in one go, but this design will definitely go well with rooms and furniture that try to hide the tech behind soothing organic materials.

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Samsung’s future vision is filled with screens that fold and bend




 

We’ll be seeing displays everywhere in the future, but some of them might be more than meets the eye.

We are already living in a screen-centric world. We do our work on computers, get our entertainment from TVs, and connect with other people through our smartphones. Even activities like reading books, listening to music, and staying healthy have become connected with devices like eBook readers, portable media players, and smartwatches. It probably won’t be a surprise if we one day wake up to a world filled with screens left and right, but Samsung is working to make those displays more interesting and, more importantly, more eco-friendly.

Designer: Samsung Display

Samsung is perhaps best known around the world for its smartphones and its TVs, and the company has been pushing the boundaries of its display technology for those consumer tech products over the past years. The most famous and most recent examples are perhaps the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3, currently considered the standard for foldable phones. Unsurprisingly, the company won’t be stopping there and will be bending and folding every display it can for almost any device.

On the mobile device side, Samsung showed off what it calls “Flex G” and “Flex S” displays that would allow an even bigger, tablet-sized screen to fold down to the size of a smartphone. Samsung will also be targeting laptops with its “Flex Note” screen, where a 17.3-inch display can fold in the middle to form a laptop with two 13-inch screens. The goal of these foldable displays, aside from boasting of the company’s prowess, is to increase people’s mobility without hampering their productivity, letting them bring along their work and entertainment anywhere.

You might have actually seen these before if you’ve been keeping tabs on unique and interesting display devices in the past years, but Samsung also brought something completely new to CES 2022. It showed off a smart speaker that seemed to have a cylindrical screen wrapped around it. But at the tap of a button on a paired smartphone, that screen unfurls and turns into a regular flat-screen panel, turning the smart speaker into a smart TV.

With LG’s vision of transparent screens and Samsung’s future shape-changing displays, we can probably expect our world to soon be littered with these bright surfaces in whatever form they may come in. That, however, might also mean an overall increase in power usage and carbon footprint, something that Samsung is thankfully aware of. Part of the company’s big spiel this year is on sustainability through its entire pipeline, from production to packaging.

For example, it is pushing its Eco2 OLED technology that reduces power consumption by removing unnecessary components. It recently also revealed a remote control that charges via Wi-Fi waves instead of electricity. With these, Samsung is trying to promise a future that is not only all about displays but, hopefully, also green.

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Samsung’s entry into smart projectors is here to replace your TV, speaker, as well as your lamp!




Say goodbye to those hulking boxes in your living room with a single projector that might actually be doing too much.

Along with the rise of cord-cutters, there has been an increase in the number of people eschewing traditional TV sets. Some have become accustomed to watching everything from their smartphones or tablets, while others have opted to use less permanent fixtures to replace those large slabs of plastic and glass. Home projectors, both the short and long throw kind, have become more en vogue these days, and Samsung is jumping on the scene with a surprisingly fresh take on the product.

Designer: Samsung

Projectors come in different sizes and designs, but almost all of them have one thing in common. Those come in a box shape and are often quite bulky, mostly to accommodate the equally bulky hardware inside. That’s what makes the new Samsung Freestyle a bit of a pleasant surprise because it throws all conventions out the window.

In stark contrast to most projectors, the Freestyle comes in a sleek cylindrical form that looks like a mix of a spotlight and a smart speaker. In reality, that is almost exactly what it is, though it substitutes the spotlight for an LED projector. The Freestyle’s body can swing 180 degrees, making it trivial to place the projector anywhere and still get a good view. The projected image can go from 30 to up to 100 inches with a Full HD resolution.

Despite the more compact size, the Samsung Freestyle is actually packed with features you’d see in bigger projectors. Those include autofocus and automatic keystone correction, both of which give the projector its advertised freedom. It even runs Samsung’s Smart TV software, so you’re getting the same apps and features you would see on the brand’s latest Internet-connected TVs. But wait, there’s more! The Freestyle also functions as a smart speaker and an ambient lighting device when not in use for watching videos.

There are, of course, some drawbacks to a projector this small, like the 500 nits of brightness that sounds too low for use in bright rooms. Its micro HDMI slot will also have some scampering for adapters, and there’s no built-in battery for wireless use. Then again, you can easily use a power bank when you carry it around, which could be music to the ears of Gen Z and millennials that this product was made for.

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This tetrapod-inspired desk accessory is designed to keep the waves of stress at bay

Arm yourself against the discomforts of life with your own personal seawall for your desk.

Life has been anything but kind to most of us in the past two years. Even as we face the new year with hope, many also wait with bated breath for the challenges that 2022 will bring. Wave after wave of problems and setbacks threaten to wash away whatever joy we have managed to build on the shores of our lives. Fortunately, some of those waves can be broken even before they hit, and these accessories for your desk and room are specifically designed to remind you that it is indeed possible to find comfort and joy in the little things in life.

Designer: Jinwoo Jang

People living near coastal areas or frequent these places might be familiar with the almost alien-looking shapes that litter some of these shores. Perhaps inspired by natural corals, these tetrahedral concrete structures are used as seawalls and breakwaters, where their odd shape not only helps dissipate the force of oncoming waves but also remains locked in place, no matter how strong those waves are. For people familiar with these man-made structures, seawalls convey a sense of comfort and security, and those are the emotions that these Seawall desk accessories are hoping to evoke.

Shaped exactly like those tetrapods, each product serves one and only one purpose. That may seem almost like a waste of space, but at the same time, it’s designed to actually reduce discomfort and stress. And what better way to stress someone out than by overloading a single product with a multitude of unrelated features?

One Seawall, for example, is meant to hold pens, keeping the stress of clutter away. Another is a smart speaker that also utilizes soft fabrics at its literal center to add a warm and fuzzy feeling to an otherwise faceless entity. There’s also a mood lamp with an equally soft glow to make the darkness less uncomfortable. And for the room’s center table, a Seawall-shaped humidifier puts the gentler kind of water to good use in your room.

Ironically, these Seawall products don’t seem to be designed like their real counterparts and function better alone. Given their size and shape, it might actually cause people more stress in trying to put all of them together. They’re a set that’s better apart, each in their own place, perhaps at the center of a table, a desk, or a shelf. Even in isolation, however, each well-balanced structure stands proud, as if to remind us that no matter what discomfort life may bring, there are always ways to protect ourselves, even if that means having a tetrapod standing in the middle of your living room coffee table.

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How does a deaf or mute person use a smart speaker’s voice assistant? This concept tries to build a more inclusive smart speaker

Here’s a question nobody probably ever thought of… how do deaf and mute people communicate with voice assistants? Or specifically, with smart speakers? It’s a question that Jinni, a sign-language-based smart assistant, hopes to answer.

While the most obvious use for a smart speaker is to listen to music and podcasts, the ubiquitous little gadget has much more far-reaching features, allowing users to ask questions, get alerts and weather updates, and most importantly, control aspects of one’s smart home, like the lights, thermostat, security cameras, etc… so when the smart speaker almost solely works on voice commands, its interface practically alienates an entire group of people with special needs who don’t rely on voice commands.

Designed to include a camera that can read sign language inputs, and a large screen that can communicate with its user, Jinni brings the power of virtual assistants to a subset of people that are often sidelined when designing mainstream tech. Relying on visual cues instead of audio ones, the Jinni can easily interface with people fluent in sign language, offering a more natural input technique for them. Responses are provided through Jinni’s large circular screen, taking audio entirely out of the equation. Just as the smart speaker is a ubiquitous little gadget in homes, Jinni hopes to do the same for the deaf and mute communities, giving them the same access to life-changing tech. The speaker concept runs on a battery (so it can be carried to different rooms) and even comes with a charging dock/mat to juice it up after a day’s use.

The Jinni is a winner of the Red Dot Design Concept Award for the year 2021.

Designer: Zhong Zuozheng

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