Amazon announced a bunch of Alexa-enabled devices together with some software updates. These devices will bring more of its voice assistant Alexa in your home, and even in your car.
These include “Echo Companions” which are products that connect to existing Echo speakers or those which can add an Alexa functionality to non-Amazon home devices that you already have. But it does not stop there because they also announced an Alexa-enabled microwave together with other smart home devices. Cool, right?
If you’re excited to know about these products, here are the Alexa-enabled devices that you can add to your smart home device collection.
New Generation Echo Speakers
Where to Buy
Amazon updated its speakers such us the Echo Dot, Echo Plus, and Echo Show, making them sound and look better while keeping the same pricing as the earlier models.
Echo Dot is Amazon’s most popular voice-controlled speaker. With it, you will be able to ask Alexa to answer questions, play music, read the news, set alarms, check the weather, and control some smart home devices.
The 3rd generation Echo Dot has an improved sound and a new design. It is now much bigger and louder. It has a new fabric design like the larger Echo, and a 1.6-inch driver, making its speaker 70 percent louder and clearer.
The new Echo Plus is basically a redesign of the previous one, bringing it more in line with the rest of the designs of the Echo devices now. The smart speaker gets a little smaller but it still has the same design and premium features such as its powerful 360-degree sound, a built-in Zigbee smart home hub, and a temperature sensor.
What’s new in the Echo Plus is the “Smart Home Local Voice Control” feature, enabling it to run certain commands for smart-home devices locally. It means that even when the internet goes down, you can still command Alexa to turn on the lights or turn on the plug.
The Echo Show smart speaker has some abilities that other Echo speakers don’t, and one of those is its display. It also has an updated exterior, adding a fabric back cover and a 10-inch HD display. It also doubles as a smart home hub just like the Echo Plus.
Another new function of the Echo Show is it now has a web browser. This means that aside from saying and displaying instructions from your Amazon Meal Kit, the new Echo Show will be able to show you some YouTube videos as well.
Echo Sound Companions
As stated earlier, Amazon also announced five sound companions that can be connected to existing Echo speakers and make other non-Amazon products in your home Alexa-enabled.
The Echo Link is a box with a digital dial on it which you can plug into a stereo. It can turn your home surround system into an Alexa-powered music station.
The Echo Link Amp, on the other hand, is the same as the Echo Link and the only difference is that it has a 60-watt stereo amplifier inside it. You just need to hook up a pair of speakers to it and it will do the smart work.
The Amazon Echo Sub is a subwoofer that pairs with one or two Echos in your home. It has a down-firing, 100-watt deep bass sound through a 6-inch woofer. It is very simple to use, you just need to plug it in, open the Alexa app, and connect it wirelessly to your Echo device/s to control music through voice commands.
The Echo Input is a simple flat puck that you can connect to any speaker you like. It also has its own microphone but does not have its own speaker. It just basically turns any regular speaker into a smart one. It’s similar to Google’s Chromecast Audio device but the only difference is it has mics and it accepts voice commands on the device, unlike Chromecast that can only accept voice commands through phone or a Google Home Speaker.
Among the five Echo companions is a wall clock that you can connect to an existing Echo speaker. Through this device, you will be able to set timers and get reminders which you can set using voice commands on Alexa. It will help you stay organized and on time at home. This wall clock is not yet available but you can sign up on Amazon to be notified when it’s up for sale.
Other New Smart Devices from Amazon
Where to Buy
Amazon Basics countertop microwave is the first appliance from the Amazon Basics line to work with Alexa technically. It does not have Alexa built directly into it but it wirelessly connects to another Alexa device in your kitchen, taking commands that way.
Aside from commanding it to microwave a potato for you, this Alexa-enabled microwave also works with Amazon’s Dash Replenish service. This means that this microwave will know if you’re running low on popcorn, ordering you more.
Amazon also introduced its own Smart Plug that instantly integrates with Alexa, allowing you to control the outlet through voice commands. You just simply insert it into an electrical conduit, plug in the appliance of your choices such as a coffee maker, light, or heater, then turn them on and off with your voice.
The Fire TV Recast is a piece of hardware that is compatible with Amazon’s Fire TV. It is a DVR device that works with a Fire TV box, stick, or an Echo Show, allowing you to cast and record live TV streams. Yes, you read that right. It records not streaming video or cable shows but over-the-air local TV shows. All of the recorded TV streams and DVR’ed contents are accessible on iOS and Android.
The Fire TV Recast have two versions, one with two tuners and a 500GB DVR, and the other one with four tuners and a 1TB of storage.
The Echo Auto is a smart device you can place on your car’s dashboard, enabling you to take Alexa on the road. Creating this is Amazon’s attempt to get Alexa out of your home and into your car. It is able to play through your car speakers and can also provide you with hands-free control over your phone by connecting it via Bluetooth.
Aside from the Alexa-enabled devices that were announced, there are also two Ring security cameras that were unveiled by Amazon. One is the Stick Up Camera and the other one is the Ring Stick Up Cam Wired. These are indoor and outdoor cameras that can stream live video feeds in 1080p HD. They also have a motion detector feature and offers a two-way talk functionality. The wired version is powered by an Ethernet cable or a micro-USB power supply, while the other one is battery-powered which can last from 6 to 12 months.
The Ring Stick Up Cameras are still selling under the Ring brand but according to Dave Limp, Amazon’s senior vice president of devices and services, they will also work with Alexa in the future.
These are the Alexa-enabled devices from Amazon which can be great additions to your smart home. So, which of these smart devices are you excited to get your hands on?