Amazon wants to put Alexa into everything: Cars, Clocks, Microwaves, Subwoofers, Plugs, and more
The Amazon Echo ecosystem is rapidly expanding. At a surprise event in Seattle today, Amazon is announcing a bunch of new products with Amazon Alexa integration. The Echo line is always featured front and center in Amazon’s army of devices. They have announced a redesigned Echo Dot, a subwoofer called Echo Sub, a Chromecast Audio competitor called Echo Input, a pair of Echo stereo amplifiers, and some other interesting stuff.
Amazon Echo Dot & Echo Plus
The Echo Dot and Echo Plus are already very popular devices and Amazon is updating them again. The design is much softer and looks more like a Google Home Mini. Instead of 7 microphones, it now just has 4. Sound quality has allegedly been improved as well. The Echo Plus offers more bass and it can act as a smart home hub. The Dot goes for $49.99 while the Plus is $149.99.
Amazon Echo Sub
Next up is the Echo Sub, which is a subwoofer. This is a 100W subwoofer that links up with your other home audio devices. It can be paired with two compatible Echo devices as well. When paired with two devices, you can now get stereo sound, which was not previously possible. The Sub is available for $129.99.
Amazon Echo Input
The Echo Input is one of the more interesting devices announced today. This is a direct competitor to the Chromecast Audio. However, unlike Google’s offering, the Echo Input still works as a smart speaker. You can plug it into any speaker and it becomes an Alexa-enabled speaker. The Input will be available for just $34.99 later this year.
Amazon Echo Show
The Echo Show is also getting a refresh today. Amazon has enlarged the display to 10-inches and redesigned the device to match the other new Echo devices. It can now act as a smart home hub as well. The bigger model costs the same as the old model: $229.99.
Amazon Echo Link & Link Amp
For those with fancy audio equipment, Amazon announced the Echo Link and Echo Link Amp. These are stereo amplifiers with multiple audio-in and audio-out options. The Link can connect to a receiver or amplifier, while the Link Amp has 60-watt dual-channel amplifier built in. These devices are meant to connect with other Echo devices, so they do not include microphones for Alexa commands. The Link will be $199.99 and the Link Amp will be $299.99.
One new feature that all the Echo speakers have now is called Alexa Guard. Alexa can notify users when speakers in the home detect the sound of breaking glass or smoke/carbon monoxide detectors. When the user says “Alexa, I’m leaving,” Guard Mode is enabled. The feature can also randomly turn on/off lights in your home to mimic someone being present.
Amazon Fire TV Recast
The Amazon Fire TV line was not absent from the event. Amazon announced the Fire TV Recast, which is an OTA streaming device with DVR that can connect to the Echo Show, Fire TV devices, and smartphones. The device requires an HD antenna, so you’ll want to put it near a window with good reception. But the cool thing is it doesn’t need to be connected to your TV, so it can be anywhere in the house. It streams the OTA to the connected devices and can record up to 2 shows at once. The Recast is available for $229.99.
Amazon Smart Plug
Echo devices are popular among the smart home crowd and now Amazon is leaning into that even more. The Amazon Smart Plug is plug that can be controlled by Alexa-enabled devices. For just $25, you can plug this into a wall out, plug a device into it, and control it from your phone and Alexa devices.
Amazon Echo Auto
Nowhere is safe from Amazon’s Echo line of products. The Echo Auto is, unsurprisingly, an Echo for cars. This is a dongle that plugs into the infotainment system of your car. It has 8 microphones for commands, which are processed by connecting to your phone. Apps like Waze, Apple Maps, and Google Maps will work with Echo Auto. It is available by invite for $50 or $25 for early adopters.
AmazonBasics Smart Microwave
Now we’re getting into some of the weird products. Say hello to the AmazonBasics Smart Microwave. This is a microwave with Alexa built in. You can literally talk to the microwave and tell it how to cook something. Other than that, this is just a basic $60 microwave with Alexa.
Amazon Echo Wall Clock
Lastly, the most unusual product of the day: the Amazon Echo Wall Clock. This is simply an analog wall clock that can connect to Alexa. The clock has microphones to receive commands and LEDs to show timers on the clock face. Oh, and you never have to adjust it for daylight saving time. You will be able to snag this interesting device for just $29.99.
Phew. That’s a lot of Echo products. Which devices from this list are you interested in? Will you buy any of them?