Amazon Echo Look Camera Goes for $50 with Intel Atom x5, RealSense Camera SR300

Amazon Echo Look is a smart camera with Alexa Assistant that was launched about 2 years ago for $200, and designed to help you decide if your outfit is a good match, beside taking photo and video selfies with voice commands. Sales may not have matched Amazon expectations (unsurprisingly), and the product is now offered for just $49.99.

Echo Look

What may be interesting for CNX Software readers is that Echo Look appears to be a consumer version of AWS DeepLens deep learning video camera for developers ($249), plus some cost savings as well, so there may be some hacking potential here. A teardown video – embedded below – reveals some interesting specifications:

  • SoC – Intel Atom x5-Z8350 quad core Cherry Trail processor @ up to 1.44 GHz
  • System Memory – 1 GB LPDDR3
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC flash, 16 Mbit SPI flash
  • Camera – Intel RealSense SR300 depth sensing camera + Amazon’s own camera module
  • Audio – Microphone array
  • Connectivity – Dual band 802.11ac WiFi 5, Bluetooth 4.1 via Broadcom BCM43570 (now known as Cypress CYW43750)
  • Texas Instruments PMIC

At $50 the hardware is incredible value, as if you were to buy an Intel Atom x5 stick ($92 shipped) plus an Intel RealSense camera SR300  ($100+ on eBay) separately the total cost would run at around $200.

There remains to be seen if the product is really easily hackable, especially Amazon replaced one of the SR300 camera in Echo Look for whatever reasons, but a good place to get started might be on AWS DeepLens product page with resources for developers.

Thanks to Jon for the tip.

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Jon Smirl
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I think they replaced the camera because they needed to rotate it 90 degrees.

Member

After watching the teardown video, it’s evident that it’s an 8Gbit LPDDR3 chip, not 8GByte.
If it was REALLY 8GByte, I would have actually bought one.

FransM
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FransM

Looks quite a bargain, unfortunately could not find it on amazon.de and amazon.com does not ship to Europe (at least not this item)

Mike T.
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Mike T.

Considering that Amazon just sent audio files from one Alexa home to another user by mistake this thing is not getting anywhere near my house unless I can flash it with different firmware.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-amazon-data-security-idUSKCN1OJ15J

Jon Smirl
Member

A human did that trying to satisfy a GDPR request, not the Echo. That error could happen at any cloud provider. To be sure if can’t happen you’d have to keep everything local. That implies reconstructing the big AI engines these services use. It’s going to take a couple decades for you to build that.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

> That error could happen at any cloud provider.

…who stores private user data indefinitely for his own purposes. It’s really fascinating that 70 years after Orwell finished ‘1984’ people buy surveillance gear on their own to install it into their homes and don’t think a second about this stuff being connected to someone else’s server sitting somewhere in a data center communicating encrypted 24/7.

Mike T.
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Mike T.

Exactly. I have no issue with the human error part, everyone makes mistakes. My issue is with the fact that it was even possible for the human error to happen. And I’m fully aware that it’s not possible to recreate the full functionality of an Echo locally… I just don’t see the logic in trading the sanctity of your home for the trivial convenience it offers.

Jon Smirl
Member

Someday I will understand why people worry so much about something like an Echo that hardly records anything, or more laughable smart meters which could be hacked by a burglar to know if you are using electricity (lights in the windows?).

But then they have no problem carrying an always-on cell phone with two high resolution cameras and a microphone into the toilet or bedroom. And it has a GPS to track you!

tkaiser
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tkaiser
future2now
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future2now

It’s these peoples socialisation, that’s a problem, not only that they collecting data for their interest, benefit and profit alone

rkantos
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rkantos

Can you put some Linux on it?