A little less than a month after pausing sales to sort out some Bluetooth connectivity kinks , Amazon's is now back on sale in the US at its original price of $30. Amazon isn't saying much about what caused the problems to begin with, but says that a new software update should improve its performance and connectivity.
"Customers with an Echo Wall Clock connected to a compatible Echo device received this update automatically," an Amazon spokesperson added.
With no microphone or speaker of its own, the Echo Wall Clock isn't a traditional Echo device in and of itself. Instead, it's an accessory that uses Bluetooth to pair with an existing Echo speaker (the, , , , or , to be exact). Tell that speaker to set a timer and you'll see it displayed as a visual countdown on the LED lights that circle the outer edge of the clock's face.
The only problem? Those timers weren't displaying as expected for the clock's early adopters.
We experienced the issue for ourselves when the CNET Smart Home reviews team tested the Echo Wall Clock out in early January. It kept accurate time after being paired with an Echo speaker, but it wouldn't show our Alexa timers, and only worked as advertised after swapping the batteries out. Some users reported that they needed to regularly swap the batteries out whenever the clock would lose its connection.
"It's fine to have a utilitarian out-of-box experience," CNET's Rich Brown noted in, "but maybe lock down the 'batteries make it go' part before you ship."
With the fix, Amazon seems to have taken heed. Existing users who already bought in should look for a firmware update that should automatically push through the next time the clock connects with your Echo speaker.