10 Amazon Alexa Range of Smart Speakers that will Spoil you for Choice

Amazon has been constantly adding newer products to its slew of smart speakers. Given the speed at which they have been introducing newer products, it’s becoming difficult to keep track of how many there are, let alone decide which one would be best for you. The company recently revamped the Echo range with a new Dot, Show and Plus and added the Echo Sub to the lineup.

Allow us to run you through the Echo devices that are currently available, the differences between each model, and explain which are most suitable for particular tasks. Not sure which is right for you? Then read on.

Which is the Best Amazon Echo Speaker for you?

1. Amazon Echo: The Best All-rounder

  • Dimensions: 148.5 x 88 x 88mm, 820g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz), Bluetooth (A2DP), 3.5mm audio out
  • Power: Power adaptor/cable (5.9ft)
  • Audio: 2.5-inch woofer and 0.6-inch tweeter
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

The latest Alexa speaker is shorter, and comes with a range of different finishes for a nicer, more contemporary look. It still offers the same Alexa power that it did before, serving as the centre of the universe while coming in at a much cheaper price.

While it offers all the skills of Alexa and Bluetooth – and the rest of the Echo experience – it doesn’t sound as good as the original model, nor as good as the Echo Plus. This is the model to get if you want to get connected cheaply, but accepting that music isn’t top of your list.

Nevertheless, the Echo 2 offers everything you need from a standard Echo speaker for a good price. The cylindrical device has 360-degree sound and stands at about 24cm tall.

It has full support for voice commands. So you can shout “Alexa” at it from anywhere in the room and ask it to do some pretty cool, timesaving tasks such as reporting news, updating you on traffic and the weather as well as answering mundane questions and reading aloud audiobooks.

It can also provide you with sports scores, schedules and supports third-party products like Uber, Philips Hue, Nest and Hive.

Who is it for?

This is the standard model for those who want a good all-round speaker with the advantages that Alexa brings. If you don’t need extra bells and whistles, like an extra screen or an integrated camera, but want something with some solid sound and something that won’t break the bank, then this is the Echo for you.

2. Amazon Echo Spot: The Best Smart Speaker with a Tiny Screen

  • Dimensions: 32 x 84 x 84mm, 163g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz) and Bluetooth (A2DP), 3.5mm audio output
  • Power: Power adaptor/cable (5.9ft)
  • Display: 2.5-inch round touchscreen
  • Audio: 1.4-inch speaker
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

The Amazon Echo Spot is what you’d get if you cross the Echo Show with the Echo Dot. It’s a compact Echo to sit beside your bed for alarms. It has a small 2.5-inch screen, which can be used for basic tasks and skills, like music, but it does a lot more. Like the Echo Show it can be used to make video calls, with a front camera.

It basically offers the same functions as the Echo Show, but in a much smaller form factor – but there’s no Zigbee controller. It can also connect to your Bluetooth speakers, or via line-out. The Amazon Echo Spot is now available in both the US and UK.

This ball-shaped alarm clock with a tiny 2.5in screen can display text-based notifications as well as soothing pictures of clouds and other such niceties. Like the rest of the lineup, Alexa remains at your beck and call. You can use all the normal voice commands that you use with the standard Echo products.

Who is it for?
People who see the Echo as the perfect alarm clock substitute, or want an Echo Show but can’t justify the price.

3. Amazon Echo Dot (2018): The Best for Lighter Wallets

  • Dimensions: 43 x 99 x 99mm, 300g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz), Bluetooth, 3.5mm audio out
  • Power: Plugs into a wall outlet
  • Audio: 1.6-inch speaker
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

Echo Dot has been amazingly popular and now there’s a new version, redesigned to ditch the hard plastic and match the new Echo Plus. It’s a larger diameter than the original model it replaces and that gives space for a new 1.6-inch speaker.

That means the Echo Dot is now a much better standalone Alexa device, better equipped to converse with you and while it’s not really designed as a music device, it will give you better overall sound. It can also be connected to another speaker via 3.5mm cable if you wish.

The Echo Dot is the baby Echo of the family. This Echo is cheap and cheerful and doesn’t try to be anything that it’s not. It’s a tiny device and only has a small speaker inside it, meaning the sound quality is not great for anything beyond voice commands and (non-music) radio.

You can, however, plug it into a speaker through the 3.5mm jack or connect it via Bluetooth, at which point it actually outperforms its bigger brother, if your existing setup is good enough.

2018’s update to the Dot came with a stylish design overhaul, as well as a 1.6in speaker, compared to the original’s 0.6in tweeter. The price remains £50, making it a convincing entry-point into Amazon’s Alexa ecosystem, particularly if you’re looking to connect to your own sound system.

Who is it for?
Those who want the Echo’s Alexa functionality, but have a pre-existing sound system or your budget is tight.

4. Amazon Echo Plus (2018): The Best for Audio

  • Dimensions: 148 x 99 x 99mm, 780g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz), Bluetooth (A2DP), 3.5mm audio in/out, Zigbee controller
  • Power: Power adaptor/cable
  • Audio: 3.0-inch woofer and 0.8-inch tweeter
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

The new Echo Plus taking a shorter, wider stance, with a cloth-covered exterior. It now matches the third-gen Echo better, with a choice of fabric colours.

But the big news is that the Echo Plus now has bigger speakers too, designed to give you better sound. It offers all the Alexa functions that all other Echo devices will offer you, but has a built-in Zigbee controller, meaning you can directly connect and control compatible smart home devices.

It’s a better overall speaker than the second-gen Echo and if music is important to you, it’s worth the upgrade over the standard (but cheaper) Echo. It can also be stereo paired with another Echo Plus and partnered with the Echo Sub to create a strong music surround system.

Sound quality is also bumped up, with the speaker having far crisper highs than the Echo 2 alongside a deeper bass with the speaker’s woofer increasing from 2.5in to 3in and general improvements to its voice recognition.

2018’s refresh of the Echo Plus brought the design closer to that of the fabric-covered Echo 2 and includes a built-in thermometer for recording room temperature.

Who is it for?
Power smart-home users and audiophiles that want the best built-in sound quality and deeper bass.

5. Amazon Echo Input: The Best for Upgrading your Existing Audio Setup

  • Dimensions: 80 x 80 x 13.8mm, 78g
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth and dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz), 3.5mm audio output
  • Power: Plugs into a wall outlet
  • Audio: Built in speaker for voice feedback
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

Amazon Echo Input is a new addition to the line-up of Echo devices. It is designed to add Alexa to existing speakers, with the Input connecting via Bluetooth or 3.5 mm cable, you can make your regular speakers smart. It’s a bit like the Echo Dot, but without the speaker.

As such this is the cheapest Echo, but the speaker it contains will only really do voice feedback when you’re not connected to other speakers. Once connected, Echo Input will offer all the services of Alexa. The Echo Input is ideal for those who want to add Alexa skills to an existing sound system.

This is a device that doesn’t have a speaker but is instead used to add Alexa to your existing audio setup. It’s very simple to use; all you need to do is hook it up via the 3.5mm jack input or via Bluetooth and the built-in microphones pick up your orders, behaving exactly as every other Echo smart speaker on the market.

Who is it for?
Those that aren’t impressed with the current Echo’s audio output and want to add some smart functionality to their non-smart speakers.

6. Amazon Echo Show: The Best for Video (and Audio)

  • Dimensions: 246 x 174 x 107mm, 1755g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11a/b/g/n/c (2.4 and 5GHz), Bluetooth A2DP, Zigbee controller
  • Power: Power adapter/cable
  • Display: 10.1-inch touchscreen
  • Audio: 8-microphone array, dual 2-inch stereo speakers
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

There’s a new Echo Show in town, expanding the display over the original model and moving the speakers to the side. The aim is a better audio and visual experience in a better-designed device, and that’s what you get.

You get all the Alexa skills you did previously, including video calling (now boosted with Skype support), as well as the inclusion of a Zigbee controller. Like the Echo Plus, the new Show can setup and control compatible smart home devices without the need for separate hubs or apps.

The Echo Show remains king of the kitchen, capable of both entertaining and informing, with the display letting you see cooking recipes and your timers, as well as a whole lot more.

It’s Alexa-with-a-screen design makes controlling smart home devices to watching YouTube videos or making video calls, the Show’s screen has definite benefits.

Who is it for?
Those looking for a smart speaker that doubles up as a video-calling station or a smart home hub.

7. Amazon Echo Buttons: The Best Echo Accessory

  • Dimensions: 75 x 75 x 36mm, 52g
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth
  • Included cables: N/A, requires two AAA batteries (included)
  • Audio: N/A
  • Alexa: N/A

Not an Echo product per se, Amazon Echo Buttons are an accessory to your existing Echo network. Echo Buttons are bluetooth-connected devices with an illuminated button that can connect to Alexa for gaming. Imagine playing a game, such as Jeopardy, and being able to slap these buzzer buttons as you play.

You can use these buttons for any Alexa-enabled game skill, including trivia ones. Basically, this is Amazon’s attempt at making the Echo a game-friendly family speaker.

Who is it for?
Those that want to transform their Echo into a family-friendly games hub.

8. Amazon Echo Sub: The Best Alexa Subwoofer

  • Dimensions: 210 x 210 x 202mm, 4.2kg
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5GHz)
  • Power: Plugs into a wall outlet
  • Audio: 6-inch down-firing woofer, 100W Class D amplifier
  • Alexa: No

The Amazon Echo Sub is technically an “Echo companion”, in that it doesn’t offer Alexa in its own right; instead, the Echo Sub acts to boost your Echo set-up by adding a dedicated subwoofer.

The Echo Sub can be paired with one Echo or Echo Plus, but it’s ideally suited to an stereo-paired set of Echos. The only drawback here is that you’ll have to use Echos of the same type, i.e. a pair of Echo Plus.

Essentially, if you’re an Echo fan and already have one or two Echos, then the Echo Sub is a great upgrade, meaning you’ll have a decent music system with bolstered bass capabilities – and all with Alexa’s great voice control.

On its own, the Echo Sub won’t do much, other than play low-end frequencies – you’ll need to pair it to Amazon’s other speakers to reap in the benefits. Unlike the others, this speaker is best placed on the floor.

Who is it for?
The Echo Sub is designed for those who love music. It’ll drastically improve the low-end frequencies from your other Echo devices, creating a more engaging sound.

9. Amazon Echo Look

  • Dimensions: N/A
  • Connectivity: Dual-band, dual antenna (MIMO, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz)
  • Power: Power adapter (21W) with 7.9 ft. cable
  • Camera: 5-megapixel sensor
  • Audio: Built-in microphone array, built-in speaker
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated)

Echo Look is a Wi-Fi camera that offers full Alexa functionality plus hands-free photo and video. It is pitched as a cloud-connected fashion consultant that allows you to snap pictures of yourself in various outfits. Alexa’s software will automatically blur the background in each image to make your outfit pop, and then it uses machine learning guided by “fashion experts” to serve up recommendations about what you should wear.

It will work as any other Alexa-enabled device, allowing you to access music, traffic timers, weather, and a vast library of “skills.” The device is wall-mountable, too, and includes a 5-megapixel sensor, built-in microphone array, and small built-in speaker. It also has LED lights (used for the flash).

Currently it is available in the US only.

10. Amazon Echo Connect

  • Dimensions: 130 x 90 x 29.5mm, 126.9g
  • Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 and 5GHz)
  • Included cables: Power adapter, Micro-USB cable, RJ11 splitter, phone cable
  • Audio: N/A
  • Alexa: Yes (Always-on/always-listening/voice-activated, but requires Echo device)

The Echo Connect is a box that you plug your landline phone connection into to turn it into a voice-controlled system. The box, which was first launched in the US and came to the UK and Germany in 2018, works with an Echo to give you Alexa control over your conventional phone line. You will be able to make and receive calls in the home simply by telling it answer or ring a contact.

As it uses your existing landline number, you won’t need to sign up for any additional services either. Plus, it all connects to other Echo devices around the home so you can call from an Echo speaker in the kitchen, say, or a Dot in the bedroom. It effectively signals the end of the basic handset.

These are the 10 devices served on a platter for you to choose from the house of Amazon. Choose the one that is best for you, based on your requirements. In case you need help with choosing the best one for you, simply drop in an email at sales@pragmatic-voice.com and you can get to talk with one of our Alexa experts.


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