Baidu Emphasizes Children’s Mode in New Xiaodu X8 Smart Speaker

Baidu Emphasizes Children's Mode in New Xiaodu X8 Smart Speaker
Baidu VP Kun Jing at the Xiaodu Smart Display X8 launch event

Baidu has released its latest smart speaker for the Chinese market. Dubbed the Xiaodu Smart Display X8, the new smart home device offers an 8-inch FullView touchscreen display with 1280×800 resolution and a robust four-microphone array to facilitate far-field voice interactions.

The X8 supports multiple biometric modalities, including face and gesture recognition. Facial recognition is an integral component of the X8’s Children’s Mode, which will block certain content and limit screen time when a child is using the device.   

In that regard, the X8 was built for the entire family, and offers a comprehensive suite of content services. In addition to the standard home video feed, the device can be used to access music and video streaming services, as well as online educational programs for children. Over time, the platform’s AI will learn user preferences to provide more personalized interactions.

“China’s smart speaker market is now larger than the smart TV market, and smart speakers are gradually becoming a necessity for Chinese households, said Baidu VP and Smart Living GM Kun Jing. “The growth of the market in the next three years will be driven by smart displays.”

The new device arrives shortly after a Chinese Academy of Sciences study that found that the Xiaodu portfolio outperformed its three biggest competitors in China, especially in the speech recognition and comprehension category.

Baidu previously partnered with Synaptics to bolster its DuerOS conversational AI platform with the help of the latter’s far-field voice digital signal processors. The DuerOS platform has now been deployed in more than 100 million smart devices, including cell phones from major players like Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo. The company itself has also released far-field voice development kits through a collaboration with Conexant.

Baidu’s facial recognition tech has similarly been leveraged for a variety of applications, including airport screening and the company’s Apollo smart car platform.