Verizon is working on a smart display. I have questions

Here's a closer look at the supposedly upcoming Verizon smart display powered by Alexa.

Andrew Gebhart Former senior producer

According to an FCC filing from a couple of weeks ago, Verizon has a smart display in the works. Showed off briefly alongside other accessories in March, I can now glean a few more details on the upcoming gadget. In the above run video, I break down the device's specs and its potential to live up to the competition. 

Watch this: Verizon gets into the hardware game with a smart display

The filing was first spotted by tech blog Protocol. Verizon's smart display will supposedly be built on top of an Amazon model using Amazon's custom assistant program. Verizon will use the custom wake words "Hey Verizon" and could potentially have specific commands tailored for the device, but Amazon's assistant Alexa will form the core underneath.


In addition to the expected bells and whistles of a smart display -- voice controls, touch controls, video calls -- Verizon will have 4G built-in so you can connect to the internet without Wi-Fi. Perhaps Verizon's gadget will be portable, but the filing doesn't indicate it will be battery powered. 

If it isn't portable, what is the purpose of 4G? How can it hope to compete with a first-party device like the brand new Echo Show 8 while using Amazon's software as a base? Will it have another unique angle? Is this what Amazon had in mind when it launched the custom assistant program? 

There are still plenty of unanswered questions about this gadget. Check out the video for more details. Verizon did not respond to CNET's request for comment.