What Is The Difference Between Echo And Alexa
Alexa is specifically the name of the virtual assistant – the disembodied voice you talk to, ask questions, and bug with song requests. Amazons Echo is simply the name given to the physical products themselves, the speakers which house the AI Alexa. … For more information see our list of Alexa compatible devices.
Amazon Echo Dot Charcoal
- 3rd Generation Echo Dot with Alexa
- Controls lights, fans, switches, thermostats, garage doors, sprinklers, and more with compatible connected devices.
- Connects to speakers or headphones through Bluetooth or 3.5 mm stereo cable to play music.
Online. In store. Always free.
If you arent 100% satisfied with this item you may return it or exchange it for free. Simply bring it back to any Staples store or mail it back to us with a free, pre-paid return label.
What Is Alexa And What Can Amazon Echo Do
– The Amazon Echo is one of a range of hands-free speakers and devices from Amazon that can be controlled with your voice. The voice-controlled “personal assistant” on these devices is called Alexa, which will perform various tasks for you and control various systems.
In this feature, we’ll explain what Echo is and what Alexa can do.
As well as being available on Echo devices from Amazon directly, Alexa is available on a lot of third-party devices like speakers or TVs as well as through the Alexa app on phones. Alexa is also available in some cars and in some wearables.
Don’t Miss: How To Get An Amazon Locker
Get Help For Your Pet
If your pet is sick or acting strangely, MyPetDoc is the among the best Alexa skills to help you diagnose what’s wrong. Describe Fido’s symptoms, and Alexa will ask follow-up questions and provide advice. If Alexa doesn’t know what’s wrong, it will forward your conversation and phone number to a veterinarian, who will give you a call within a few minutes. .
Funny Things To Try With Alexa
Ok, that was a lot! Why dont we have a little fun now. Here are some fun ideas for Alexa:
Alexa can entertain you with cheeky replies to specific questions. Ask Alexa to Make me a sandwich or Speak like Yoda to get funny replies. You can also ask interesting questions like Mac or PC? or What do think of the iPhone to get Alexas hilarious takes on these topics.
Utilize Alexas unique talents for entertainment by asking for specific responses. Ask Alexa to Tell me a joke or Sing me a song to get interesting song performances. You can also say Alexa, can you rap? to get a rap performance. Say Tell me a tongue twister if you are looking to loosen up your speech skills.
Utilize specific Alexa skills for fun conversations. You can ask Alexa to Start crazy fact, a skill that teaches you one crazy fact every day. Or, if you are looking for a good, fun comeback, you can ask Alexa to call upon the RoastMaster or Shakespearean Insulter skills to get themed comebacks that can have you in splits.
My favorite of all time:
Alexa, turn down for what?
Im not going to spoil it for you
Recommended Reading: Shipping To Amazon Locker
Use Alexa As A Personal Trainer
Alexa can whip your behind into shape with the 7-minute-workout skill. If you say, “Alexa, start 7-minute workout,” the virtual assistant will suggest reportedly tested exercises that will increase your metabolism, improve your energy and remove fat. The best part: You can take breaks when you need them. These are the best Alexa skills for health and fitness, and pair them with some of the best fitness trackers with Alexa for added features, like the Wyze Band.
Some of the best smartwatches also have Alexa built in, like Fitbit Sense and Amazfit GTR 3 Pro.
Use Your Echo As A Watchdog
Did you know your Echo device can bark at intruders like a dog? Were not kidding. With Alexa Guard and Alexa Guard Plus enabled, your Echo device turns into a surveillance device. The smart speaker will listen for deliberate noise like breaking glass and smoke alarms and ping your mobile devices with alerts.
Alexa Guard is completely free to use. For $4.99 a month, you can upgrade to Alexa Guard Plus, netting you extra benefits like 24/7 emergency response support and the aforementioned dog barking byte. To enable the feature, open the Alexa app and navigate to More> Settings> Guard. The app will ask you to confirm and enter your ZIP code. Providing your ZIP allows Alexa to cue up Away Lighting when youre away from home.
Another great benefit of Alexa Guard is that the feature works alongside home security systems, including Ring, ADT Pulse, and ADT Control.
Recommended Reading: Purchasing Kindle Books On Iphone
Amazon Echo Dot Performance
The marquee feature of the Amazon Echo Dot is the revamped audio system that helps make the Echo Dot sound better than any version prior.
While theres very little debate that the latest Echo Dot does, in fact, sound better than the 2017 model, its not quite the device youd want to listen to a whole album on – vocals are easily lost in a cacophony of sound, and bass is nearly non-existent .
So, yes, while some music does better on the Echo than others , youll still want to connect the Echo Dot to an external speaker when its time for some heavy listening.
Unfortunately connecting devices to the Amazon Echo Dot isn’t as simple as it could be: Disappointingly while Google has figured out a universal way to connect devices via Chromecast Built-in, Amazon needs to rely on Bluetooth for its connections. Thats not a dealbreaker by any means, but it can be a bit of an annoyance if you have friends over who all want to take turns playing DJ.
Its also interesting that Amazon is pushing the audio performance aspect of the speaker as we found during our testing that it was the microphones and call quality that left us most impressed.
Friends and family we spoke to using the Amazon Echo Dot claimed that the quality was nearly as good – if not better than – the speakerphone quality on our phones. That speaks to the quality of the Amazon Echo Dots microphone array and the noise-reduction algorithm Amazon has implemented for phone calls.
How The Amazon Kids+ Service Works
Kids+ strives to provide a great experience for kids using Alexa. It includes ad-free content such as children’s audiobooks, games, movies, and TV shows.
It also features kid’s radio stations and playlists, kid’s skills, and character alarms. If you have trouble waking your child in the morning, try having Sully from Monsters University wake them up. Or perhaps Olaf Frozen.
The Echo Dot Kids Edition bundles some nice subscription savings. Without buying the Kids Edition, Kids+ costs $2.99 per month for a single child with a Prime membership and $4.99 per month for non-Prime members.
If you have more than one child, it’s $6.99 per month for up to four children with the Prime membership, and $9.99 per month for non-Prime members. Prime members can also pre-pay a full year for $69, and non-Prime members for $99.
This may make the extra expense worth it if you look for tons of educational and entertainment value for your kids.
Recommended Reading: Ebt Card On Amazon
Entertain Your Kids For Hours On End
Actually, more like, “let your kids entertain themselves.” Alexa is full of games, Easter eggs, silly answers to silly questions and much more. Here are some ways Alexa can keep your kids busy:
- Find Easter eggs. Alexa loves a good inside joke.
- Set timers and play music. Kids will quickly learn how to talk to Alexa and can ask her for timers, music and random trivia.
What Can The Echo Dot Do
1) Home assistant and entertainment in one device
The best part of the Echo Dot is how easily it does menial tasks youd normally need to pull out your phone for. Thats thanks to the Alexa smart assistant software. When youre cooking or working out its nice to keep your hands free setting a time. Just ask Alexa.
Similarly, Alexa on Echo Dot is handy for quickly setting reminders and dates in your calendar. Check your appointments and the weather when you wake up by asking. Save yourself some screen time.
Alexa can even answer basic questions for you by searching online. If youre easily distracted by screens, its a nice alternative when working.
Want to play your favorite Replacements or Black Pink song? Ask Alexa to play it in Spotify, Apple Music, or Amazon Music. If your Alexa enabled smart TV is connected to the same network, you can use Alexa as a voice remote. Control your TV in another room if you like.
2) Control your smart devices
With Alexa the Echo Dot allows you to control all the smart devices in your home. This goes beyond pulling up something on Netflix and feels Sci-Fi the first time you use it.
Control your smart locks, turn off Bluetooth lights around your home, and even control the thermostat with a voice command.
3) It works as a home intercom system
If you have more than one device in your home, you can also use your Echo Dot as part of an intercom system. This is useful if you live in a larger, multi-bedroom home.
5) Improved privacy features
Recommended Reading: Running An Amazon Store
How To Set Up The Echo Dot
To get started with an Echo Dot, first make sure you have the Alexa app downloaded. Then, decide where you want your Echo Dot to reside and plug it in. The ring around the top of the device will glow blue, then orange. Now, youll need to connect the device to your homes Wi-Fi network.
Once connected, the setup process should automatically begin in the app. If not, head to Alexa Devices, then select Add Alexa Device within the app. When thats done, youre ready to start talking to your device.
Create A Smarthome With Echo Dot
What can Echo Dot do beyond entertainment? People don’t think about it, but you can create a smart home environment with that small device.
You will need smart plugs, lightbulbs, and compatible accessories and appliances but the Echo Dot gives you the power to control these devices with your voice.
For example, this year we plugged our Christmas tree lights into this set of smart plugs. Every day Alexa would turn these on and off for us.
Recommended Reading: Is Audible Included In Amazon Prime Membership
What Can Alexa Do
Alexa is able to play music, provide information, deliver news and sports scores, tell you the weather, control your smart home and even allow Prime members to order products from Amazon. Alexa sits in the cloud, expanding the information offered all the time and refining the responses to give you more accurate information. No matter what Alexa device you ask, all can return these sorts of answers, be that on your soundbar or in your car.
One of the core functions is playing music and Alexa can draw many sources. is supported, of course, but beyond that, there’s support for many more services like Spotify, Deezer, Apple Music, TuneIn as well as apps from individual providers, like the BBC.
The Echo devices with a display can also return visual information, extending beyond widgets to news videos, recipes or games. On the display-equipped devices – Echo Show – you can also use touch controls to respond, for example, or to control smart home devices.
Alexa can also tap into information from other devices and services by using Skills , so will be able to give you specific information about your car, your latest weigh-in with Fitbit or to find your Tile.
Do You Have To Have Alexa To Use An Echo Dot
Technically, it’s not necessary to have Alexa to work Echo Dot. The catch, however, is that without Alexa, your Echo Dot will serve as speaker only.
How? That’s simple. To bypass Alexa and utilize the Echo Dot, you can link up the speakers to your tablet, iPad, smartphone, or PC via Bluetooth.
As for the initial setup, you have two options: use the Alexa app or a browser link. Both methods are covered in this article below!
Read Also: Are Amazon Lockers Free
Get Alexa To Recognize Voices In The Home
Alexa supports different profiles, so you can sign in and out of Amazon accounts, but it also has the power to recognise who’s speaking via their voice, even if they’re using the same Amazon ID. This means you will get personalised news, music and shopping, so for example, if you don’t want your partners’ sports bullet-ins you can get something that you do want.
First train your voice. Say “Alexa, learn my voice” and follow Alexa’s instructions. Now get the second person to install the app and sign in. On their app they should choose Im someone else and then Alexa will train their voice.
Try our step-by-step guide to voice profiles and account switching for more detailed information.
Clocks Timers And Alarms
- Alexa, what time is it?
- Alexa, set a timer for 20 minutes
- Alexa, start/stop stopwatch
- Alexa, set an alarm for 7 a.m. tomorrow
Many people ask Alexa to tell the time, set a timer, start a stopwatch, or schedule an alarm. If you ask the time, Alexa will respond immediately based on your local timezone. If you have an Echo Show or an Echo Dot with Clock, the time will be displayed on the device for you as well.
When you’re setting an alarm or starting a countdown, Alexa will confirm your request. Once you’ve set an alarm, she will ask you to clarify a.m. or p.m. If you’re starting a timer or stopwatch, the clock will begin immediately.
To silence an alarm or timer, say “Alexa, turn off.” If you’re feeling extra groggy, you can say, “Alexa, snooze” for 10 extra minutes of sleep.
You May Like: Can You Use Gamestop Gift Cards On Amazon
Voice Control Your Tv Too
You can connect your or Fire TV Stick to Alexa . When youve done all that, youll be able to ask Alexa not only to turn on the TV but also to search by genre or even actor. So when you say, Alexa, show me movies with Brad Pitt, his entire collection should show up. Pro tip: Choose Oceans 11 over Oceans 12.
Echo Dot Vs Amazon Echo
In fact, it can do everything it’s big brother, , can do.
The main difference between the two is the quality of the speaker.
That’s it really.
So, if you wanted to test drive the Amazon Echo but you didn’t want to invest a lot, then the Echo Dot is a great option.
Here are some of the ways we use the Echo Dot right now.
Recommended Reading: What Channel Is Amazon Prime On Spectrum
How To Play Free Music On The Echo Dot
Robert Hayes Robert is a freelance editor and writer living in Colorado. Read more June 12, 2021
The Echo Dot is Amazons inexpensive yet highly functional home automation device. Echo Dot is compatible with nearly every Alexa product and most other automation services, such as your security system, thermostat, and lighting. The device is versatile and compact, and it makes the perfect virtual assistant for anyone.
One of the most popular uses for the Echo Dot is a music control system. Its truly empowering to be able to sit in any room of your house, have the urge to hear a particular top 40 song, and just say, Hey Alexa! Play Save Your Tears by The Weeknd.
However, while Amazon would like it very much if you would get all your music through its premium services, the fact of the matter is that you can configure your Echo Dot to work with pretty much any music service out there, including Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play Music, and more.
There are a few different ways to get free music from your Echo Dot:
- Link a free music service to your Dot through the Alexa app.
- Play music from a linked device through your Dot.
- Play music in your own personal library through the Dot.
This article shows you how to play free music on your Echo Dot using the three different options above, so you can kick back and enjoy your Top 40 hits or bask in some favorites from the past! Lets get it started in here!
Use As An External Speaker
You will be able to do so only if you have an Alexa app that is not connected to the internet. To link it to your Echo device through Bluetooth, youll need an Alexa app. Once youve successfully linked your Echo with an external speaker or with your smartphone, you wont need Alexa to pair them again. Your linked gadgets will work flawlessly until they are unpaired.
Also Check: How To Buy On Amazon
Incredibly Useful Things Alexa Can Do On Amazon Echo
Alexa has grown into a pervasive personal assistant. We were curious about what features the Alexa team loves that many of us haven’t noticed. Here we spotlight ten slick features you may have missed that are sure to make you feel more at peace with our robot overlords.
Back in the days when I was a product developer, there were always a few features that I was particularly proud of that customers, resellers, and reviewers tended not to notice. Usually, this was because bigger features provided a competitive advantage or garnered more attention. Even so, I always felt that some of the lesser-known carefully crafted features deserved more love.
That’s why we have this article series. I’m pointing out some of the cooler features I’ve been looking at for each product spotlighted. I also reached out to the product designers and internal champions and asking them what features they wish were more well-known. Then, I’m sharing those features with you. I’ve previously covered some of Google’s favorite features. Now it’s time for the .