As a stay-at-home mom, I spend a lot of my time doing household chores, and that means I am almost always listening to music. In the past, I have just used my phone for Pandora, but not anymore! Amazon sent me an Echo to review, and I honestly don’t know how I lived without it.
“Amazon Echo is a hands-free speaker you control with your voice. Echo connects to the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, news, sports scores, weather, and more—instantly. All you have to do is ask.
Echo has seven microphones and beam forming technology so it can hear you from across the room—even while music is playing. Echo is also an expertly tuned speaker that can fill any room with 360° immersive sound. When you want to use Echo, just say the wake word “Alexa” and Echo responds instantly. If you have more than one Echo or Echo Dot, Alexa responds intelligently from the Echo you’re closest to with ESP (Echo Spatial Perception).”
So I know what you are thinking…”Why do I need an Echo if I already have my phone and a bluetooth speaker to listen to my music?” Those were my same thoughts, but once I received my Echo and put it to the test, I won’t ever go back to just my phone. The Echo uses Alexa Voice Service to respond to my requests, and Alexa and I have become pretty good pals ;). All I have to do is say her name and ask her to play my music and TA-DA she plays my music! That means when I am in the middle of cutting raw chicken, or scrubbing a sink, or the million other ‘mom-jobs’ that keep my hands busy, I can turn on my music just using my voice (or turn it up or down). Alexa is sensitive enough to hear me when I am across the room and will respond to any voice that calls her name. She even responds to television commercials that are advertising the Echo, which we all think is pretty funny. I feel a bit weird saying it, but Alexa is kind of part of our family now :).
Now I am a pandora girl, but the Amazon Echo is able to play several other stations such as Spotify, iHeartRadio, and more. This means that you have access to almost all of your playlists. The speaker is excellent quality and is perfect for easy listening or even a party. It’s also pretty sleek looking and looks great on my counter. But the Echo isn’t just about playing your music. Alexa can answer questions and give information on a variety of different topics. She can even read audiobooks! I use Alexa often when I need a reminder to leave the house to pick up my kids from school, or when I need to check the time. She’s very convenient to have around! Here are some of the Echo’s awesome features:
- Plays all your music from Amazon Music, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and more using just your voice
- Fills the room with immersive, 360º omni-directional audio
- Allows hands-free convenience with voice-control
- Hears you from across the room with far-field voice recognition, even while music is playing
- Answers questions, reads audiobooks and the news, reports traffic and weather, gives info on local businesses, provides sports scores and schedules, and more using the Alexa Voice Service
- Controls lights, switches, and thermostats with compatible WeMo, Philips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, Wink, Insteon, Nest, and ecobee smart home devices
- Always getting smarter and adding new features, plus thousands of skills like Uber, Domino’s, and more
So I imagine you probably need a fantastic gift for the music-lover in your life and the Amazon Echo is where it’s at! I don’t know many people who don’t listen to music at some point during that day, so you really can’t go wrong with gifting the Echo for Christmas this year. The whole family will love having Alexa around (I know mine does) and this is a gift that will actually get USED. I definitely recommend putting the Echo on your Christmas list this year.
Amazon Echo gets BRAGGING RIGHTS!!