LAS VEGAS — Monster, the audio company behind Beats headphones, is bringing Amazon virtual assistant Alexa to its line of Soundstage home speakers.
Noel Lee, the company’s founder product driver, announced the integration at CES in Las Vegas today.
“This will put Monster on the map with Soundstage,” Lee said, rolling around the stage on a Segway.
Monster is looking for its next smash hit. The company was Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine’s original partner for Beats, but the musicians and Monster parted ways in 2012, with Iovine and Dre eventually selling the line to Apple.
The company is betting on voice beyond the Alexa/Soundstage integration. Monster also announced a partnership with Melody, a new app made by Speak Music, that allows users to control music across different streaming services using their voice. Monster will build sport headphones with the Melody voice assistant built-in.
“Imagine a set of headphones where you can keep your phone in your pocket and interact directly with the headphone to control all of your most popular music services such as Spotify and iHeartRadio,” said Speak Music President and Co-founder Dean Summers, at the CES event.
The Melody and Alexa announcements were the most noteworthy in an otherwise lackluster press conference. Monster announced several new celebrity reps, including Sean Kilpatrick of the Brooklyn Nets, DJ group Club Banditz, and celebrity fisherman Peter Miller. In the past, Seattle Seahawks star Marshawn Lynch has represented Monster.
It was eight-year-old DJ Livia on the decks who really stole the show at Monster’s event this year. A frequent crowd pleaser at Monster events, she ushered in the crowd mixing hip-hop classics.
Monster’s Amazon announcement was the latest in a series of Alexa integrations launching at CES, including an LG refrigerator and INRIX OpenCar platform. In fact, the Consumer Electronics Association’s top economist Shawn DuBravac said he wouldn’t be surprised to see 700 new Alexa skills launch over the next few days at the big tech expo.