Skip to main content
Loading...

Featured Post

Game Of Thrones Season 8 - End Game With Sinhala Subtitles

Flipboard

Flipboard

Amazon Echo Dot Review

The Echo Dot is a tiny voice-activated speaker that’s a lot cheaper than the big Amazon Echo. Is it the one to buy? Find out in our Amazon Echo Dot review.

PRICE WHEN REVIEWED
  • $49.99
Alexa is a voice-activated assistant that's built into Amazon's Echo speakers and - more recently - its Fire tablets.


In fact, Amazon has made the digital assistant available to developers to use in their own devices. CES 2017 was crammed with Amazon Alexa gadgets, but among the cheapest is still Amazon’s own Echo Dot.

PRICE
Please note that this Echo Dot is now the old model. Amazon has announced the 3rd-generation Dot which is also priced at £49/$49.

If you want, you can still (at the time of writing) get this model for a little cheaper. £39/$39 but that's not much of a saving.

Amazon has refreshed the Echo line-up for 2018 with other new devices including the Echo Show (2nd gen) and Echo Plus (2nd gen). 

FEATURES AND DESIGN
The major difference, of course, is that the Dot does not have the large speaker of the Echo. It still has a built-in speaker, but of course doesn’t offer the same volume or quality of the big Echo.

The other difference is that the Dot doesn’t have a rotating ring on top. Instead, it has two volume buttons on top along with the microphone mute and multi-purpose button which are also present on the big Echo.  
The Dot does have the same seven microphones and can hear you across the room, just like its big brother. It can also act as a Bluetooth speaker: pair it with your phone or tablet and you can play music wirelessly.

This Bluetooth capability also works the other way as you can use the Echo Dot as the source of audio and connect it to your own (louder) Bluetooth speaker. That’s one way to get higher quality sound from your Echo Dot, but it also has a standard 3.5mm minijack output for hooking up just about any powered speaker or hi-fi.

The big Echo has neither of these features.

The Dot’s built-in speaker is absolutely fine for Alexa as her voice is clear and loud enough. It’s also good for the Flash Briefing, which is a customisable news, podcast and weather update. Also see: Amazon Echo Show

It falls down, of course, when you start playing music, but it’s no worse than many portable radios, so if you want to pop it on your bedside table or even in the kitchen it might be all you need.

And thanks to accessories such as the Ninety7 Vaux, you can upgrade the Dot's sound quality and make it battery powered at the same time.

AMAZON ECHO DOT: ALEXA
This is why the Dot is such good value: it can do everything the Echo can do as far as Alexa is concerned.

Alexa isn’t a match for the Google Assistant in the Google Home when it comes to answering general questions, but once you understand her strengths and weaknesses, you quickly know before you ask whether she’ll be any help.

For example, you can ask for definitions of words, distances between places, heights of mountains, even who is the oldest person alive. Alexa can also read out Wikipedia articles.

She’ll tell you jokes, and there are lots of things you can say to her to get funny responses.

It’s the practical stuff at which Alexa is the best, such as setting timers, alarms, manging items on your to-do and shopping lists, playing music, checking if the train is late and turning on the lights. She can even handle reminders now.

Many of Alexa’s skills have to be enabled before they work, but this is a simple as browsing the ‘skills store’ and finding what you like.

New skills are added every week, and so Alexa grows more useful all the time. It’s frustrating if your smart thermostat or lights aren’t supported, but most of the popular brands have already added Alexa support.

This means you can say, “Alexa set the heating to 21 degrees” while you’re sat on your sofa without having to turn on your phone, launch an app and then make the adjustment. Put simply, it’s a lot faster to use your voice, and you can check your commute while your hands are busy brushing the kids’ teeth.

In August 2017, Amazon added the ability to play music across multiple Echos, so it's effectively now a multi-room system. You can find out how to use this in our How to use Alexa guide.

AMAZON ECHO DOT REVIEW: PRIME
Is the Echo Dot any use without an Amazon Prime subscription, though? The answer depends on whether you want to use your Echo Dot for music streaming. But don't forget you can use Spotify, TuneIn and other services through Alexa.

The standard Amazon Prime subscription includes Prime Music, but the selection is quite limited. You can upgrade to Amazon Music Unlimited by paying £3.99 per month per Echo to get a similar size library to Spotify. 

Having a Prime subscription will also enable you to order certain things via Alexa and even track their delivery, but frankly this isn’t a must-have feature. And because Alexa doesn’t care who’s speaking, it can be a bit dangerous when your kids work out they can ask Alexa to buy things – including digital music. Fortunately, you can disable this or set a four-digit PIN that must be spoken to authorise purchases.

The bottom line is that you don’t need a Prime subscription to use Alexa and it’s only the Amazon Music part that you’ll use via Alexa.

SPECS
  • Amazon Echo Dot: Specs
  • Dimensions: 32 x 83.5 x 83.5 mm
  • Weight: 163g
  • Wireless: 802.11n dual-band with MIMO, Bluetooth A2DP and AVRCP
  • Audio: built-in speaker designed for voice
  • Warranty: 1 year

View the original article here

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

Samsung Galaxy Buds Review

Samsung has introduced a new pair of wireless earbuds with various upgrades including wireless charging. Find out what we make of the Galaxy Buds in our full review.
Should I Buy The Samsung Galaxy Buds?
The Galaxy Buds are solidly good wireless earbuds with comfortable design and reasonable sound quality for an affordable price.
Samsung has added some nice features here like Ambient Sound, but there are also cost cutting measures and iPhone owners will want to avoid considering these as an AirPods alternative.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Hands-On Preview

Niantic has used the tech behind its hugely successful Pokémon Go to bring witches and wizards a new game that they’re going to be obsessed with.
Should I Buy Harry Potter: Wizards Unite?
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is more than just Pokémon Go with magic. It brings gameplay elements that you'll know and love if you're a Pokémon Go fan together with new and exciting features designed exclusively for this new game to bring the Wizarding World to life.

iHealth Core Review

This smart scale from iHealth offers detailed body composition measurements, from BMI to visceral fat rating. Find out what we think in our iHealth Core review.
Should I Buy The iHealth Core? We like the way that the Core and Lite scales interact with the other iHealth products, and the Core offers a bunch of useful metrics with which to monitor your health. Setup is easy and the app's graphs give a decent visual representation of your health-metric trends as you progress.

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2018) Review

A mid-range phone with triple rear cameras is a rare thing, especially at under £300 but the Galaxy A7 isn't an instant winner. Find out why in our full review.
Should I Buy The Samsung Galaxy A7 (2018)? The Galaxy A7 is a decent choice for a mid-range phone if you're looking to spend less than £300. Highlights include an excellent screen, nice design and cameras you'd wouldn't expect to find.
However, unless you're going to use the wide-angle lens a lot there are some strong rivals out there like the Moto G7 Plus and Honor Play.

Amazon Lord Of The Rings TV Show Latest News

Amazon's Lord of the Rings TV series has been quiet on the news front for the past few months but we're starting to some details emerge for the highly anticipated show.
For most of the past decade, TV producers have been desperate to find ‘the next Game of Thrones’, and now Amazon apparently reckons it’s found it: Lord of the Rings.

Like Fan Page