Echo Buttons got lost in the deluge of Alexa products announced by Amazon a few months back. Understandably so — they were fun, but weird additions to company’s portfolio of smart home products. The little glowing devices finally start shipping today, priced at $20 for a two-pack, and Hasbro’s offering one of the more compelling reasons to pick them up for the holidays.
The buttons pair to an Echo device via bluetooth, serving as gameshow buzzers. Trivial Pursuit Tap is one of the first third-party applications to take advantage of the little plastic discs, turning the smart home speaker into a makeshift, at-home, Alexa-based gameshow. Users can connect up to four of the Buttons at once, assigning different colors to each player.
It’s a fun little divergence from the standard Echo line — one that apparently started off as a bit of a pet project and somehow made its way to retail. Given the recent surge in popularity of app-based trivia games, however, this could actually prove a bit of a dark horse success for the company, especially given their low barrier of entry.
According to Amazon’s site, the Buttons should arrive prior to Christmas, which makes them solid candidates for stocking stuffers, and will give the family something to do other than argue about politics and the new Star Wars after all of the presents are unwrapped. Whether or not they’re stashed away in the closet come New Year’s, however, is entirely dependent on whether other game companies embrace the tech.