High Tech

Amazon Echo Dot: test and review of the Alexa connected speaker

Amazon Echo (2nd generation) has been sold in France since mid-June. It is a connected accessory that acts like a robot. She has a voice command from which she can perform multiple tasks. For example, she can have the weather forecast, turn off the lights, listen to information, etc. Recently, it has been available in French, and can be found in almost all homes.

Introducing the Amazon Echo Dot

Amazon Echo is part of the second generation of smart speakers. It is found in three forms: Echo, Echo Dot and Echo Spot. This speaker has a technology called Alexa. Alexa is an artificial intelligence with several features. Its first feature is that it is optimized to better meet expectations. She is capable of performing all kinds of missions or commands if she is able to. Amazon Echo has good connectivity and several home automation features.

The Appearance of the Accessory

The Amazon Echo has a soft, understated design that makes it a truly elegant accessory. It has a gray coated body that is suitable for all types of decor. With cylindrical and compact shape, you can choose between three colors according to your preference. Among the colors, we have charcoal gray, and heather gray. To accompany the device, Amazon offers various types of coverings with high-end shells. The device is slightly larger than a regular can and weighs only 821 grams. The state of the speaker is indicated by a ring located above the device. It has four mechanical buttons and seven interposed microphones that fit perfectly into the design of the device. The role of the four buttons is divided as follows: one for asking questions to the voice assistant, one for muting the microphone, and the last two for volume control. On the side you will find a power port and a 3.5mm jack output.

Voice recognition

Seven microphones in total are installed to guarantee better voice recognition. However, when there is sound disturbance, the Echo has difficulty recognizing the voice. Thus, we can notice that the speaker is sensitive to noisy environments. Also, when placed near a television, reception becomes difficult.

The sound quality

It can be noted that the Amazon Echo alone cannot constitute a main speaker. It has two speakers: a 63mm woofer and a 16mm tweeter. Despite these two speakers, the audio quality of the speaker remains insufficient. Also, you will notice that when you increase the volume above 50%, the quality decreases. However, you can connect it to another audio speaker using the 3.5 mm jack port. Thanks to its integrated Bluetooth system, it is possible to connect it to another device. So you can correct the sound quality by connecting it to another accessory.

Using the Amazon Echo

You can use the smart speaker in a lot of areas. Use it for example for managing multimedia content, for home automation, to place orders online, to make calls, to send messages, etc. Home automation Home automation is the strong point of the device. Amazon Echo is compatible with most connected objects, whether they are lights, switches, thermostats, outlets. In addition, Amazon is in partnership with several designers of connected objects. It is for this reason that we cannot speak of Amazon Echo without speaking of home automation. Thus, just with a single sentence, it is possible to launch several simultaneous actions. For example, you can decide to open the shutters, turn on the heating, or turn off the lights, all at the same time. You just need to say a sentence. This is undoubtedly an ideal solution if you are a fan of home automation. Multimedia With the Amazon Echo, accessing various streaming services has become a snap. Whether for videos or music. However, this functionality remains limited. Indeed, the equipment has fewer music streaming services unlike some of its competitors. Thus, users like Apple Music, Google Play music and others are unable to use the Alexa service. In addition, the Echo line is not compatible with the Amazon Fire TV Stick unlike the Google Home which allows access to multimedia content online. Therefore, you cannot use Amazon Echo voice control to launch services with your Fire stick. But, although it is a bit tedious to access some programs directly, note that the Echo allows access to all radios. Calls and messages It is possible to make calls and send messages with the Echo range. You can also thanks to the latter, make video calls in VOiP. However, note that the video call feature is only available for Echo Spot. Also, only Amazon Echo users can be called. This is exactly the same with calls, which are made only from Echo to Echo. The walkie-talkie functionality is also available. In particular, it allows you to communicate from speaker to speaker. Online shopping From your Echo, it is quite possible to place orders online on Amazon. However, there is one restriction: can benefit from this feature, only users who have a Prime account. However, it will have to be optimized because the order works much more for products purchased regularly. But when it comes to ordering any product you don't necessarily need it. The Amazon Echo in a Nutshell The Amazon Echo has acceptable sound quality and auxiliary output. It is above all an attractive connected speaker with a neat design. However, it remains limited when it comes to online services and is incompatible with Apple and Google products. Despite this, it is compatible with most connected objects. Its voice recognition and sound quality beyond 50% can still be improved. A product to test without doubt.

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