China has always been a source of weird and wonderful tech. The LingLong DingDong is no exception.
Basically voice-enabled speakers, the product might have a weird moniker but usage-wise, has a lot of potential.
Voice-enabled speakers are slowly becoming a thing as Amazon and Google forsee us using our voices to turn on the lights, get the stereo going or just setup reminders.
What makes this little device an alternative for users in China as opposed to the Amazon Echo is that it understands Chinese. Well, it was programmed to anyhow. It even comes in Mandarin and Cantonese versions; the languages require engines too complex to fit both dialects in one device. You can use one of three commands to activate it: DingDong DingDong, Xiaowei Xiaowei (a nickname for girls) or BaiLing BaiLing (skylark).
LingLong says that the speakers can understand roughly 95 per cent of the population in China, not too bad a feat considering the difference in accents and dialects in the country.
The company is also keen on working with Amazon to either offer their voice engine or figure out a way to cross-promote their products. If you want one, they're currently only sold in China for US$118 (S$170) but with the power of online shopping, nothing is truly impossible. Perhaps a device to consider for Chinese-speaking people in your life or at the very least, have fun introducing it. Just don't get your tongue in a complete twist.