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It’s obvious that Amazon is trying to make its Alexa personal assistant as ubiquitous as possible. At today’s marathon product introduction, the company debuted a wide variety of its Echo-branded Alexa-powered products, both for the home and for the outdoors.
But that presents the problem: with all these new and upgraded Echo devices, which should you get? What follows is a rundown of the basic specs, prices, and availability of the most interesting products introduced today. Take a look, and see if any strike your fancy.
Amazon has updated a couple of its current smart Echo speakers and has introduced several new ones for use inside your home.
The Echo Studio is Amazon’s new high-end speaker. It’s been designed with a one-inch tweeter and three two-inch midrange speakers, 3D audio, and Dolby Atmos technology; it also offers a built-in smart home hub.
Availability: Now in preorder; shipping November 7th
Amazon’s Echo Show line of smart displays may look like picture frames, but according to Amazon, they do much more. This version offers an eight-inch screen and a built-in camera, and includes integration with the Food Network so that you can use it as a way to watch and possibly build new recipes.
Availability: Now in preorder; shipping November 21st
The third generation of Amazon’s Echo Speaker has been upgraded with improved speakers (according to Amazon, it has the same audio architecture as the current Echo Plus speaker) and new fabric design colors, including blue, charcoal, gray, and sandstone.
Availability: Now in preorder; shipping October 16th
The next-generation Echo Dot includes an LED display on the side that lets you check the time, outdoor temperature, timers, and alarms.
Availability: Now in preorder, shipping October 16th
(Note: The previous version of the Dot remains available at $49.99)
Designed to fit anywhere in your home, this tiny smart speaker measures only 2.8 x 2.6 x 2.0 inches and plugs directly into a power socket. It includes a USB-A port.
Availability: Now in preorder, shipping November 14th
If you want your personal assistant to be used everywhere, that can’t just include the home. These more portable devices give you access to Alexa anywhere you go.
Amazon is going straight up against Apple’s AirPods with its own set of wireless earbuds. Aggressively priced and including technology designed to reduce ambient noise, the Echo Buds also include a passthrough mode (so you can hear what’s happening on the street), two armature drivers in each earbud for quality sound, and the ability to access not only Alexa, but Siri or Google Assistant as well (depending on what your phone uses).
Availability: Now in preorder; shipping October 30th
One of two products that can be considered more experimental than anything else, the Echo Frames will accommodate your eyeglass prescription, but are available by invitation only (you can request an invitation on the product page). Unlike the notorious Google Glass, Echo Frames are designed to look like regular glasses and do not include a camera or display; the idea is to keep Alexa at your beck and call anywhere you go.
Availability: On invitation
This smart ring is, like the Echo Frames, meant to keep Alexa with you no matter where you wander. Another invitation-only product, the Loop uses a button to give you access to your personal assistant and haptic technology to vibrate when you receive a call — and yes, you can hold the ring up to your ear to receive and answer that call.
Availability: On invitation