The new Echo is a 9 inch high tube shaped Bluetooth and Wi-Fi speaker coupled to Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant, their version of Apple’s Siri or Google Now.
Amazon Echo is designed around your voice. It’s always on—just ask for information, music, news, weather, and more. Echo begins working as soon as it detects the wake word. You can pick Alexa or Amazon as your wake word. Echo is also an expertly tuned speaker that can fill any room with immersive sound.
There’s also a free companion app available on Fire OS, Android, iOS, and desktop browsers, so you can manage your alarms, music, shopping lists etc.
The guys from TWiT’s ‘Before You Buy’ show have reviewed the Echo (spoiler: they love it). It’s well worth a watch as they put the speaker through its paces and give you an idea of what it can do.
As ever our first thoughts turn to integration. Could this be adapted for smart home control use? Would you buy an Echo or is your smartphone enough in this role? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
The Echo is currently available by invitation only in the US at $199 (plus a limited time $99 offer for Amazon Prime members).