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Amazon Echo (2017 / 2nd Gen): Review Summary & Guide

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Introduction to Amazon Echo

Amazon just redefined the concept of smart devices with its new Echo speaker. With a wide range of ‘skills’ which include controlling home appliances, creating to-do lists, and even ordering a pizza (yes!), we can rightly rank this smart speaker up there.

Users heartily laud the improvements seen in Alexa, especially as regards its responsiveness. There’s no button to activate actions so ‘Alexa’, ‘Echo’, ‘Amazon’ and ‘Computer’ are trigger words you can use. Generally, Alexa gives a more natural and forthcoming aura, unlike other conventional voice assistants. Let’s get down to the basics.

 

 

 

Design

The Amazon Echo enjoys a sleek and compact design. It is 148mm tall, 88mm in diameter and weighs 821g. The shell is available in six different colors (Charcoal fabric, Walnut finish, Silver finish, Sandstone Fabric, Oak finish and Heather gray fabric) and either employs a wood or metallic finish. This gives it a very friendly feel and it blends into the design of your home easily. Although, to some, it might be cumbersome to keep clean.

For the sake of connectivity, there is a 3.5mm jack for your auxiliary cable, allowing other speakers connect to Echo. This smart device also maintains the LED light ring at the top of the device which lets you in on the volume level and also when the device is listening.

Features

This smart device has unique capabilities which increase your productivity. It gives you free radio and music streaming from services like Pandora, Amazon music, Spotify etc. As earlier stated, it also allows seamless voice interaction which gives you the opportunity to request real-time information on sports, news, live traffic and weather reports.

What’s more? You have an audiobook reader, smart gadgets control (Television, lights, thermostats, garage doors, sprinklers etc.), alarms, and so on. It gets better, this Artificially Intelligent smart speaker can learn your routines, call or send texts, shop online and track purchases made on Amazon.

Multi-room audio allows you play music in different rooms on other Echo devices, you can also get movie info and movie theatres. One really impressive feature is the ability to hear commands while blasting music. This can be attributed to the presence of seven microphones which possess the noise cancellation feature.

When you have more than one Amazon Echo device around you, the Echo device with the best proximity responds to your commands. That, my friend, is the principle of Echolation. Bluetooth speaker, Bing search engine, and a Dolby speaker/360° omnidirectional audio wrap up this smart device.

Rating

How to use the Amazon Echo

To set-up the Amazon Echo, you require the Alexa app on your smartphone (the app is available for Android and iOS devices). This app gives you access to the control and management of your smart device.

The Amazon Echo device is not battery operated, so you need to connect it to the mains for usage. Open the Alexa app, go to settings by tapping on the icon at the top left of your device’s screen,  select “Settings” which you will find at the bottom of the menu, then tap “Setup a new device”. This initiates the Wi-Fi connectivity.

After this, select the Echo device you are setting up and from the next page, select your preferred language. The next page will require that you select “Connect to Wi-Fi”, at this point the Echo’s light ring should indicate an orange color. If this is not seen, you may have to touch down the “action button” for about 5 seconds to put the Echo in setup mode.

Now, go to your phone’s setting, go to Wi-Fi settings and from the list of access points, select “Amazon Echo”. When you complete this, go back to the app and select/tap “Continue”. From the Alexa app, connect to your home Wi-Fi. If successful, there orange ring light should go off.

You can change the wake word of the device from ”Alexa” by going to the Alexa app, tap on your Echo device, scroll till you find “Wake Word”, select it and pick your choice from the available options.

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Amazon

Amazon Echo Show: Review Summary & Guide

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Introduction to Amazon Echo Show

Described by many as a fun add-on, rather than a must-buy smart device. Nonetheless, this product provides value for money through the addition of a 7-inch touchscreen display.

The Amazon Echo Show is a smart gadget that boasts enhanced visuals along with a responsive voice features via the Alexa app, just like the regular Echo, Echo Plus and Dot models. And for the first time, the virtual voice assistant Alexa has a face.

Amazon Echo Show is equipped with functionality similar to Amazon Echo, however, it is enhanced with a screen, allowing you to get a visual of what you are doing. Getting this smart gadget is the first step towards achieving that smart home.

 

 

 

Design

Unlike the conventional Amazon Echo, this smart digital gadget comes in various shapes and shades which fit conveniently into any space. You can make use of your smart device in your kitchen, living room, and even the bedroom. Sadly, this design doesn’t earn any accolade. In fact, it ranks as one of the most hideous smart devices in its price range.

Equipped with a 7-inch touchscreen and a 5-megapixel camera for taking pictures and making video calls, this smart device finds functionality almost everywhere. The Echo Show also has an exciting array of 8 far-field microphones located at the top of the speaker. This makes the Amazon Echo Show perfect for picking up voice commands from anywhere across the room.

Its screen displays tips on how to use the Alexa app. This smart device also allows you find trending topics or news articles on the web. More so, Alexa reads the content to you via its speaker. It is also equipped with Bluetooth, enabling you to access your playlist from either your Android phone or Apple device.

The set of commands on the Alexa app are called “Skills” and there are about 15,000 or more Skills. New skills are added as it adapts to its user’s vocabulary style since it is connected online. Speaking of online, its constant connection and use require it to be positioned on a shelf with a power socket readily available.

Performance

Amazon Echo view is appealing to the convenience of its users due to its simplifying features. You can make hands-free calls with any other user of the Alexa Echo app. You can also shop online solely with voice commands, view pictures on the web (7-inch touchscreen, don’t forget), play videos or movie trailers online, etc.

The speakers on the Amazon Echo Show are powered by Dolby and this enhances the sound produced, giving it a crisp, clear tone. Echo Show can also connect to Spotify, Pandora, and TuneIn. Interestingly, using the camera on your gate or door, you can see what’s happening outside too.

As earlier mentioned, Alexa is the perfect definition of a smart student, constantly learning your idiosyncrasies and applying that new knowledge when interacting with you. The potential skill set of this smart device is endless, and this is one inherent advantage of constant connection to the internet.

Setup

The process of setting up Echo View is not difficult especially when you have used previous Amazon smart gadgets. Install the Alexa app on your Smartphone and follow the prompt displayed on your screen. You should easily set up the connectivity this way.

Flaws

Amazon Echo Show speaker, though an astounding upgrade from prior Amazon smart devices, is not on par with similar smart gadgets in the market. One major flaw is the insipid design. The heavy reliance on third-party apps like Spotify and TuneIn is another turnoff.

Another fatal flaw in this smart speaker is its low-resolution screen. An incredible disappointment, considering the price.

Summary

Amazon Echo Show is capable of doing everything a conventional Echo smart device can do but its touchscreen adds visual flair. The concept of displaying instructions also improves usability greatly. Even though Amazon Echo Show is not yet there, we can make do with it for now.

With over 100 devices compatible with Alexa, the Amazon Echo Plus points a smart home user towards having the ideal home. The ZigBee functionality and free Phillip Hue light bulb also improve the consumer’s experience.

In conclusion, the Amazon Echo Plus is more than a smart speaker, it is a virtual machine with a plethora of impressive qualities. However, if all you need is a speaker to play your songs, this smart device might not be a good fit for you.

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Amazon

Amazon Echo Plus: Review Summary & Guide

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Introduction to Amazon Echo Plus

 

This is a new addition from the stables of Amazon and it is exquisitely tailored for flexibility and control. This device has a hands free speaker that can be activated and managed using your voice. A critical review of this smart device reveals the only outstanding feature; its built-in ZigBee hub functionality.

It can be connected to Alexa; Amazon’s indefatigable voice assistant, to carry out tasks like making calls, surfing the web, streaming music, getting updates on news, sports, and the weather forecast, etc. This is, perhaps, that smart device you always longed for to actualize your dream of a smart home.

 

 

 

Design

Amazon Echo Plus retains the conventional cylindrical look from prior models. The black, white, and silver colors are defined by the 235mm height, 84mm width, and it weighs 2.1 pounds. This smart speaker is regarded as a masterpiece by some, while other pundits feel there’s a lot to be done.

This smart device has a metallic speaker grille with dotted designs spanning the halfway mark of the speaker.  At the upper edge is an LED indicator which provides information on the volume levels or listening modes. It also helps you identify if there is any connectivity issue.

Tired of speaking to a machine? The Amazon Echo Plus has two buttons positioned at the top end of the device; one is for muting the mic and the other one is to activate “Alexa” without using voice command.

Built with a 3.5mm jack, the Echo Plus is also able to connect to external speakers either through hardwire or Bluetooth

Features

With a ZigBee smart home hub built in, you can connect smart-home devices, such as the Smart Philip Hue lights or a smart lock directly to the Echo Plus, without having to install a bridge or third-party smart home hub.

The Alexa app also allows you create a schedule for the lights to automatically turn on and off. This can also be done by giving Alexa a voice command.

With over 15,000 voice-activated functions referred to as “Skills”, you can conveniently hold a conversation with this smart device. Alexa can play music from Amazon’s owned music player app or through other third-party music stores like Spotify.  You can also ask random questions and the device will attempt to provide a decent answer.

The Echo Plus comes with two new added functions. The Alexa app is now able to scan your contacts book to find email addresses associated with Amazon Echo devices that have enabled calls. This makes the process of contacting a friend or relative relatively easier (pun intended). All you have to do is give Alexa a voice command to make that call.

You can also create custom words or phrases for Alexa to trigger “routines” or schedule a number of assigned tasks to be carried out at once. For example, a “Good morning Alexa” command could be created which, when said, triggers Alexa to turn on the lights, give traffic updates, play a preselected song from your preferred music app, read newspaper headlines and control other smart home devices.

Sound

This is the main purpose of the smart device, right? It is a smart speaker with a 2.5-inch downward-firing woofer and 0.8-inch tweeter powered by Dolby, the sound it gives off is undoubtedly impressive.

The Amazon Echo Plus sounds a little sharper and produces sounds with more bass effects. When the volume is within the low to medium range, it produces crisp sounds, however, when the volume is increased, the sound quality suffers distortion.

The LED light ring at the top of the device gives a blue glow whenever Alexa is listening to your voice or processing a command and with its impressive array of seven inter-connected microphones, Alexa can hear you from anywhere in the room even when music is in play.

Summary

 

With over 100 devices compatible with Alexa, the Amazon Echo Plus points a smart home user towards having the ideal home. The ZigBee functionality and free Phillip Hue light bulb also improve the consumer’s experience.

In conclusion, the Amazon Echo Plus is more than a smart speaker, it is a virtual machine with a plethora of impressive qualities. However, if all you need is a speaker to play your songs, this smart device might not be a good fit for you.

Rating

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Amazon

Amazon Echo Dot: Review Summary & Guide

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Echo Dot Review

Introduction to Amazon Echo Dot

Despite the emergence of a cute-looking Google Home Mini, Amazon’s Echo Dot remains firmly entrenched as one of the most versatile smart home speakers on the market.

This smart device initiated a steady shift from a touch-oriented culture to a voice-activated one by bringing the barrier to entry so low.

Looking to get an amazing deal on a smart device? Is 20% discount good enough? How about 50%? Well, when you purchase the Amazon Echo Dot, you’re practically getting all the functionality of the Amazon Echo for around a third of the price. Tempted? Read the rest of our Amazon Echo Dot review below.

 

 

 

Design

One distinct feature of the Amazon Echo Dot is its portability. It is incredibly convenient to carry about and equally easy to use. Unlike the Amazon Echo which has a volume ring, the Amazon Echo Dot features two additional buttons to control the volume (a major flaw according to some pundits).

Another noticeable feature is its height. It is just 32mm tall; making it easy to tuck away. At the rear, there is a micro USB port which allows you connect the speaker to a power source. A 3.5mm port is equally present; allowing the Echo Dot to connect to an external speaker.

If you love your devices to come in different colors apart from the regular black and white, then you might be disappointed. This smart device comes in only two colors.

Performance

Be rest assured that the far-field voice recognition feature found in Echo is equally present in the Amazon Echo Dot. This smart speaker also boasts an improvement in the quality of sound produced as a result of the possible enhancement using an external speaker.

Its seven inbuilt microphone arrays allow Alexa to pick up voice commands from any location in the house, irrespective of the music coming from the speaker.

If you have multiple Echo Dot devices, the “Echo Spatial Perception” otherwise known as ‘Echolation’, allows the device detect where you are so that only the Dot closest to you will respond.

Captain Alexa

The most amazing thing about this smart device is the assistant’s incredible ability. When it comes to clocking in, Alexa can set timers, tell you the time, and wake you up with an alarm (talk about a smart speaker). Alexa can also tell you what your schedule for the day is based on the calendar you have connected; your itinerary, and the forecast of weather that day.

Even though Alexa has a myriad of data at her fingertips, this seemingly large volume, when compared to Google’s database, is child’s play. The implication is that Alexa might struggle to answer some of your questions, although this smart assistant will still express accurate understanding of the question posed.

Philips Hue, Nest, Honeywell, LIFX, and LightwaveRF are few tools compatible with the Amazon Echo Dot. Once it is connected, your wish is Alexa’s command, literally. Unlike other smart home gadgets, this smart speaker allows you to group items. For example, when you group a bedroom light into the bedroom group, home group, or downstairs group, you can turn off the bedroom lights and all the other lights will immediately go off. You can also adjust the brightness, color, scene, of your lights with your voice.

Other features include the ability to adjust the temperature, control your smart TV, heat your coffee using a smart plug, etc. basically, the essential characteristics a smart device affords you.

Summary

As of December 2017, Echo dot became the highest selling home speaker in the country, it surpassed its predecessor’s record and it drove Google and Apple home speakers home. Even though the exact number of sales was not released by Amazon, insiders claim it is the highest selling Amazon product at the moment.

Undoubtedly, it is a great product. The price point even makes it better. However, Amazon made a few concessions in order to make the entry point as low as possible. Overall, this is an amazing product, perhaps, a better replacement for the Amazon Echo.

Rating

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OnePlus

OnePlus 5T Review, Summary and Guide

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Five months after the initial introduction of the OnePlus 5, the Chinese company moved on to greater things; literally.

The new OnePlus 5T is regarded as a cost-effective rival to some of the most powerful smartphones on sale today, in fierce contention with the likes of iPhone 8, LG V30, and Samsung Galaxy ranges. But how does it stack up?

OnePlus 5T Review: Design

The OnePlus 5T is 156.1mm tall and 75mm wide and 7.3mm thick.

The sleek metal unibody makes it aesthetically pleasing, and it got a modest makeover with smaller bezels, and a gently-curving rear.

Even though the OnePlus 5T is neither dust nor water resistant, the 2.5D Gorilla Glass, anodized aluminum, and ceramic coating are basic protective measures.

Lastly, it weighs 163g, making it fit the description of big, bold, and beautiful. The OnePlus 5T colors are Lava Red, Sandstone White, and Midnight Black.

OnePlus 5T Review: Display

This is perhaps, the single biggest improvement on this device. The OnePlus 5T boasts a 6.01-inch full HD (18:9) AMOLED panel, making it one of the few handsets available with a screen larger than 6-inches.

One disappointing feature, however, is its full HD resolution; a mere 2,160 x 1,080 with a 401ppi pixel density. For the price, sacrifices have to be made, and this is obviously one of them for the 5T. It’s not ‘bad’ as a screen though.

Display Modes:

  • Adaptive mode
  • Reading Mode
  • Night Mode
  • Lift Up Display
  • Ambient Display

Software

Equipped with OxygenOS 4.7 and Android 7.1.1 (Nougat), the OnePlus 5T is upgradable to Android 8.0 and Oxygen OS 5.0.3.

Face Unlock uses a plain 2D recognition feature, which makes it faster and easier to use for unlocking the phone, however, it is unfit for any other authentication outside the lock screen – so you won’t be able to use it for payments, for example.

Its chipset is the Qualcomm MSM8998 Snapdragon 835 and the OnePlus 5T has an Octa-Core (4 x 2.45 GHz Kryo & 4 x 1.9 GHz Kryo) processor. It offers 6GB/8GB of RAM and 64/128GB storage, depending on where you are in the world.

There is no external memory slot available, however.

OnePlus 5T retains the 3.5mm headphone jack and the company announced that it will continue to support this connector until USB-C headphones garner enough momentum to making the switch painless. There is also an active noise-cancelling microphone to make audio quality clearer on calls.

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OnePlus 5T Review: Camera

The OnePlus 5T is home to dual cameras; the primary 16-megapixel and the secondary 20-megapixel. OnePlus employs what it calls ‘Intelligent Pixel Technology’, which is useful in brightening dark scenes without causing a distortion.

The camera features a pro mode, panorama mode, time-lapse, slow-motion video mode and a rear fingerprint sensor that can be long-pressed to take photos with either camera.

It also comes with a face unlock interface which allows you seamlessly unlock your phone. On the other hand, the removal of the telephoto lens makes an optical zoom impossible and the front camera lacks a portrait mode.

The face unlock is not as reliable as that of the Samsung S8, however.

OnePlus 5T Review: Battery

Like its predecessor, the OnePlus 5T comes with a 3,300 mAh battery.

Tests reveal that the life-span under heavy usage is 11 hours, 22 minutes, however, some users find that they get a lot less than that under any conditions.

On paper, it’s about on par with the Samsung Note 8 and Google Pixel 2, as long as you don’t suffer the same problems as some of those other users linked above.

OnePlus 5T Review: Pricing & Availability

The OnePlus 5T is available in almost every country in the world.

The phone price ranges from $450-$600 depending on the specifications you choose, and it’s available directly from OnePlus, third-party retailers or on contract deals – again, depending on what country you’re in.

OnePlus 5T Review: Rating

Amazon

Amazon Echo Show: Review Summary & Guide

Published

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Introduction to Amazon Echo Show

Described by many as a fun add-on, rather than a must-buy smart device. Nonetheless, this product provides value for money through the addition of a 7-inch touchscreen display.

The Amazon Echo Show is a smart gadget that boasts enhanced visuals along with a responsive voice features via the Alexa app, just like the regular Echo, Echo Plus and Dot models. And for the first time, the virtual voice assistant Alexa has a face.

Amazon Echo Show is equipped with functionality similar to Amazon Echo, however, it is enhanced with a screen, allowing you to get a visual of what you are doing. Getting this smart gadget is the first step towards achieving that smart home.

 

 

 

Design

Unlike the conventional Amazon Echo, this smart digital gadget comes in various shapes and shades which fit conveniently into any space. You can make use of your smart device in your kitchen, living room, and even the bedroom. Sadly, this design doesn’t earn any accolade. In fact, it ranks as one of the most hideous smart devices in its price range.

Equipped with a 7-inch touchscreen and a 5-megapixel camera for taking pictures and making video calls, this smart device finds functionality almost everywhere. The Echo Show also has an exciting array of 8 far-field microphones located at the top of the speaker. This makes the Amazon Echo Show perfect for picking up voice commands from anywhere across the room.

Its screen displays tips on how to use the Alexa app. This smart device also allows you find trending topics or news articles on the web. More so, Alexa reads the content to you via its speaker. It is also equipped with Bluetooth, enabling you to access your playlist from either your Android phone or Apple device.

The set of commands on the Alexa app are called “Skills” and there are about 15,000 or more Skills. New skills are added as it adapts to its user’s vocabulary style since it is connected online. Speaking of online, its constant connection and use require it to be positioned on a shelf with a power socket readily available.

Performance

Amazon Echo view is appealing to the convenience of its users due to its simplifying features. You can make hands-free calls with any other user of the Alexa Echo app. You can also shop online solely with voice commands, view pictures on the web (7-inch touchscreen, don’t forget), play videos or movie trailers online, etc.

The speakers on the Amazon Echo Show are powered by Dolby and this enhances the sound produced, giving it a crisp, clear tone. Echo Show can also connect to Spotify, Pandora, and TuneIn. Interestingly, using the camera on your gate or door, you can see what’s happening outside too.

As earlier mentioned, Alexa is the perfect definition of a smart student, constantly learning your idiosyncrasies and applying that new knowledge when interacting with you. The potential skill set of this smart device is endless, and this is one inherent advantage of constant connection to the internet.

Setup

The process of setting up Echo View is not difficult especially when you have used previous Amazon smart gadgets. Install the Alexa app on your Smartphone and follow the prompt displayed on your screen. You should easily set up the connectivity this way.

Flaws

Amazon Echo Show speaker, though an astounding upgrade from prior Amazon smart devices, is not on par with similar smart gadgets in the market. One major flaw is the insipid design. The heavy reliance on third-party apps like Spotify and TuneIn is another turnoff.

Another fatal flaw in this smart speaker is its low-resolution screen. An incredible disappointment, considering the price.

Summary

Amazon Echo Show is capable of doing everything a conventional Echo smart device can do but its touchscreen adds visual flair. The concept of displaying instructions also improves usability greatly. Even though Amazon Echo Show is not yet there, we can make do with it for now.

With over 100 devices compatible with Alexa, the Amazon Echo Plus points a smart home user towards having the ideal home. The ZigBee functionality and free Phillip Hue light bulb also improve the consumer’s experience.

In conclusion, the Amazon Echo Plus is more than a smart speaker, it is a virtual machine with a plethora of impressive qualities. However, if all you need is a speaker to play your songs, this smart device might not be a good fit for you.

Rating

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Amazon

Amazon Echo Plus: Review Summary & Guide

Published

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Introduction to Amazon Echo Plus

 

This is a new addition from the stables of Amazon and it is exquisitely tailored for flexibility and control. This device has a hands free speaker that can be activated and managed using your voice. A critical review of this smart device reveals the only outstanding feature; its built-in ZigBee hub functionality.

It can be connected to Alexa; Amazon’s indefatigable voice assistant, to carry out tasks like making calls, surfing the web, streaming music, getting updates on news, sports, and the weather forecast, etc. This is, perhaps, that smart device you always longed for to actualize your dream of a smart home.

 

 

 

Design

Amazon Echo Plus retains the conventional cylindrical look from prior models. The black, white, and silver colors are defined by the 235mm height, 84mm width, and it weighs 2.1 pounds. This smart speaker is regarded as a masterpiece by some, while other pundits feel there’s a lot to be done.

This smart device has a metallic speaker grille with dotted designs spanning the halfway mark of the speaker.  At the upper edge is an LED indicator which provides information on the volume levels or listening modes. It also helps you identify if there is any connectivity issue.

Tired of speaking to a machine? The Amazon Echo Plus has two buttons positioned at the top end of the device; one is for muting the mic and the other one is to activate “Alexa” without using voice command.

Built with a 3.5mm jack, the Echo Plus is also able to connect to external speakers either through hardwire or Bluetooth

Features

With a ZigBee smart home hub built in, you can connect smart-home devices, such as the Smart Philip Hue lights or a smart lock directly to the Echo Plus, without having to install a bridge or third-party smart home hub.

The Alexa app also allows you create a schedule for the lights to automatically turn on and off. This can also be done by giving Alexa a voice command.

With over 15,000 voice-activated functions referred to as “Skills”, you can conveniently hold a conversation with this smart device. Alexa can play music from Amazon’s owned music player app or through other third-party music stores like Spotify.  You can also ask random questions and the device will attempt to provide a decent answer.

The Echo Plus comes with two new added functions. The Alexa app is now able to scan your contacts book to find email addresses associated with Amazon Echo devices that have enabled calls. This makes the process of contacting a friend or relative relatively easier (pun intended). All you have to do is give Alexa a voice command to make that call.

You can also create custom words or phrases for Alexa to trigger “routines” or schedule a number of assigned tasks to be carried out at once. For example, a “Good morning Alexa” command could be created which, when said, triggers Alexa to turn on the lights, give traffic updates, play a preselected song from your preferred music app, read newspaper headlines and control other smart home devices.

Sound

This is the main purpose of the smart device, right? It is a smart speaker with a 2.5-inch downward-firing woofer and 0.8-inch tweeter powered by Dolby, the sound it gives off is undoubtedly impressive.

The Amazon Echo Plus sounds a little sharper and produces sounds with more bass effects. When the volume is within the low to medium range, it produces crisp sounds, however, when the volume is increased, the sound quality suffers distortion.

The LED light ring at the top of the device gives a blue glow whenever Alexa is listening to your voice or processing a command and with its impressive array of seven inter-connected microphones, Alexa can hear you from anywhere in the room even when music is in play.

Summary

 

With over 100 devices compatible with Alexa, the Amazon Echo Plus points a smart home user towards having the ideal home. The ZigBee functionality and free Phillip Hue light bulb also improve the consumer’s experience.

In conclusion, the Amazon Echo Plus is more than a smart speaker, it is a virtual machine with a plethora of impressive qualities. However, if all you need is a speaker to play your songs, this smart device might not be a good fit for you.

Rating

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Amazon

Amazon Echo Dot: Review Summary & Guide

Published

on

Echo Dot Review

Introduction to Amazon Echo Dot

Despite the emergence of a cute-looking Google Home Mini, Amazon’s Echo Dot remains firmly entrenched as one of the most versatile smart home speakers on the market.

This smart device initiated a steady shift from a touch-oriented culture to a voice-activated one by bringing the barrier to entry so low.

Looking to get an amazing deal on a smart device? Is 20% discount good enough? How about 50%? Well, when you purchase the Amazon Echo Dot, you’re practically getting all the functionality of the Amazon Echo for around a third of the price. Tempted? Read the rest of our Amazon Echo Dot review below.

 

 

 

Design

One distinct feature of the Amazon Echo Dot is its portability. It is incredibly convenient to carry about and equally easy to use. Unlike the Amazon Echo which has a volume ring, the Amazon Echo Dot features two additional buttons to control the volume (a major flaw according to some pundits).

Another noticeable feature is its height. It is just 32mm tall; making it easy to tuck away. At the rear, there is a micro USB port which allows you connect the speaker to a power source. A 3.5mm port is equally present; allowing the Echo Dot to connect to an external speaker.

If you love your devices to come in different colors apart from the regular black and white, then you might be disappointed. This smart device comes in only two colors.

Performance

Be rest assured that the far-field voice recognition feature found in Echo is equally present in the Amazon Echo Dot. This smart speaker also boasts an improvement in the quality of sound produced as a result of the possible enhancement using an external speaker.

Its seven inbuilt microphone arrays allow Alexa to pick up voice commands from any location in the house, irrespective of the music coming from the speaker.

If you have multiple Echo Dot devices, the “Echo Spatial Perception” otherwise known as ‘Echolation’, allows the device detect where you are so that only the Dot closest to you will respond.

Captain Alexa

The most amazing thing about this smart device is the assistant’s incredible ability. When it comes to clocking in, Alexa can set timers, tell you the time, and wake you up with an alarm (talk about a smart speaker). Alexa can also tell you what your schedule for the day is based on the calendar you have connected; your itinerary, and the forecast of weather that day.

Even though Alexa has a myriad of data at her fingertips, this seemingly large volume, when compared to Google’s database, is child’s play. The implication is that Alexa might struggle to answer some of your questions, although this smart assistant will still express accurate understanding of the question posed.

Philips Hue, Nest, Honeywell, LIFX, and LightwaveRF are few tools compatible with the Amazon Echo Dot. Once it is connected, your wish is Alexa’s command, literally. Unlike other smart home gadgets, this smart speaker allows you to group items. For example, when you group a bedroom light into the bedroom group, home group, or downstairs group, you can turn off the bedroom lights and all the other lights will immediately go off. You can also adjust the brightness, color, scene, of your lights with your voice.

Other features include the ability to adjust the temperature, control your smart TV, heat your coffee using a smart plug, etc. basically, the essential characteristics a smart device affords you.

Summary

As of December 2017, Echo dot became the highest selling home speaker in the country, it surpassed its predecessor’s record and it drove Google and Apple home speakers home. Even though the exact number of sales was not released by Amazon, insiders claim it is the highest selling Amazon product at the moment.

Undoubtedly, it is a great product. The price point even makes it better. However, Amazon made a few concessions in order to make the entry point as low as possible. Overall, this is an amazing product, perhaps, a better replacement for the Amazon Echo.

Rating

Related Reviews

Continue Reading

Trending