Amazon announced a number of new products today, including new members to its Echo smart speaker line: an all-new Echo, Echo Plus, and the Echo Spot.
In a typical move for the company, Amazon hopes to get its Echo line into new homes by being aggressive on price. The new Echo is only $100, a significant price drop from the original’s $180 price point. Amazon’s new flagship Alexa-enabled smart speaker introduces a new, more compact design, and improved sound.
Amazon’s $150 Echo Plus features a built-in smart home hub. The smart speaker is compatible with ZigBee smart products, and the Echo Plus allows users to easily set up a smart home system. The company is even offering a free Philips Hue smart lightbulb with purchase of an Echo Plus “while supplies last.”
Echo Spot is a $130 smart alarm clock with full Alexa capabilities. The device has a screen to display information, as well as a front-facing camera. While Spot has its own speaker, it can also connect to other speakers via Bluetooth or a 3.5mm cable.
The new Echo and Echo Plus are currently available for preorder on Amazon, and both products will be released on Oct. 31. Echo Spot is also available for preorder, and it’s slated to be released for the holiday season on Dec. 19.
Along with the new products, Amazon also announced a number of new Alexa features. Alexa will soon be able to recognize Routines — a single voice command that will enact a series of customizable actions. As an example, simply saying “Alexa, good night,” could turn off the lights, lock the door, and turn off the TV.
Additionally, Echo and other compatible smart devices will now be able to fit into smart home groups, which should make for more natural interaction with Alexa.
For information on current Alexa skills that can make your home smarter, check out our article Ten Alexa Skills To Turn Your House Into A Smart Home.