Comcast was awarded a patent for this smart speaker design, but will it ever be released?

Comcast was awarded a patent for a smart speaker, one with a very unusual design, to say the least (thanks to @SteveDonohue on Twitter for pointing this out). Instead of going for a spherical shape that comes with the Amazon Echo and Apple HomePod Mini, or even the rounded rectangular look of the Google Nest Audio device, a sketch shows what appears to be a speaker with a sloped top and wide base.

Online records show Comcast first applied for the patent last year, but it wasn’t approved until April 2022. As seen in the sketch, the device appears to have playback controls on the side of the speaker, with an additional button. and a small support at the bottom.

The smart speaker’s design looks like a urinal (sorry, not sorry).
Image: Comcast via USPTO

At first glance, I’d say this device looks more like a router (minus the antennas) than a smart speaker, which I guess makes sense for a company that specializes in connectivity. But after one of my colleagues said it looked like a chamber pot, I couldn’t help but see the resemblance.

The funny thing is that Comcast was reportedly looking to create some kind of health-focused speaker that would track your bathroom habits in 2019. Although it never made it into the hands (or bathrooms) of consumers, it was supposed to come with sensors. that tracked how often someone got up to use the bathroom and how long they stayed there. At the time, Comcast made sure to emphasize that it was not a smart speaker. It’s not entirely clear if these two devices are related in any way, and Comcast did not immediately respond to inquiries. the edgecomment request.

I’m going to do my best to reserve my judgments for now; It’s still hard to tell what the smart speaker will actually look like from this sketch alone. However, if the device ever launches, I’d like to see how its design translates into a tangible speaker.

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