The rumour mill is abuzz with news that social media giant Facebook is set to unveil its range of smart home speakers - one of its first major hardware creations - in coming months. New reports suggest the launch date of the company's smart speakers has been pushed to October 2018, amid a cut in order volumes. It is said the order volumes for 2018 have been cut by as much as 20 percent; estimates for 2019 volumes, on the other hand, remain constant. Additionally, mass production is said to begin from June this year.
According to a report by Taiwanese media publication Digitimes, citing sources from the upstream supply chain, Facebook is gearing up to announce two new smart speakers codenamed Fiona and Aloha. While both will reportedly sport 15-inch in-cell panels - procured from LG Display - Aloha will sport a steeper price tag because of the presence of an adjustable display. Pegatron is said to be the sole manufacturer for both speakers.
The report also states that the original plan to unveil these smart speakers was set for May but got delayed due to founder Mark Zuckerberg's summons by the US Congress in the face of Facebook's data privacy scandal.
It is also claimed in the report that Apple's HomePod is currently suffering from poor sales as the Cupertino-based tech giant has reportedly cut down monthly supply orders from 500,000 to just about 200,000.
In a separate report from August last year, Facebook was said to be working on yet another hardware product - a video chat device. This device will reportedly feature a laptop-sized touch display and might be unveiled at the upcoming F8 conference slated for May. The device is currently in its prototyping phase and is being tested in homes. Apart from that, the Bloomberg report had also mentioned the arrival of a standalone smart speaker.