Amazon Announces New Echo Product Lineup with Alexa Support

Posted Thu Sep 28, 2017 at 10:10 AM PDT by
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Several new Echo devices have been detailed.

Amazon has announced the upcoming launch of its updated Echo lineup. The collection includes the 2nd-Generation Echo, Echo Plus, Echo Connect, and Echo Spot.

"Three years ago we introduced the first Echo, powered by Alexa, with a goal to fundamentally simplify and improve the way customers interact with their homes," said Tom Taylor, Senior Vice President, Amazon Alexa. "Today, Alexa can make calls, play music in every room, turn on your lights, and even order you a pizza. But it's still day one, and today we're making Echo and Alexa even better. The all-new Echo and Echo Plus deliver better sound, all new far-field technology, and new features we think customers will love."

The new Echo features an updated, compact design with an upgraded speaker architecture, a dedicated tweeter, a 2.5" down-firing woofer, and Dolby processing to deliver 360 degree omnidirectional audio. In addition, the device uses the company's second generation far-field technology, offering improved wake word processing, beamforming technology, and enhanced noise cancellation. Supported music services include Amazon Music, Pandora, Spotify, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and more.

Amazon's 2nd Generation Echo is now available for pre-order for $100. Shipments will begin on October 31.

The Echo Plus features a built-in smart home hub, allowing customers to easily connect their smart devices. Users can simply say, "Alexa, discover my devices," and the Echo Plus will automatically find and set up compatible lights, locks, plugs, switches, and more without any additional hubs or apps, with support for a variety of ZigBee products from brands like Philips Hue, GE, Kwikset, and more. Likewise, the unit also incorporates enhanced 360 degree omni-directional audio with Dolby processing, along with music playback support from services like Amazon Music, Pandora, Spotify, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and more.

Amazon's Echo Plus is now available for pre-order for $150 with a Philips Hue smart lightbulb included while supplies last. Shipments are expected to launch on October 31.

The Echo Connect is a new Alexa accessory that allows users to turn their Echo into a hands-free speakerphone for their existing landline or VoIP home phone service, enabling users to call contacts and answer incoming calls through voice commands. 

Amazon's Echo Connect is now available for pre-order for $35. Units are set to ship on December 13.

The Echo Spot is a new compact Alexa device with a circular screen and second generation far-field technology with four microphones, acoustic beam-forming technology, and enhanced noise cancellation. Ideal for nightstands, desks, or kitchen counters, the Spot offers support for Alexa voice commands, smart alarm clock features, calendars, shopping lists, smart home control, and video playback for news, weather, and more. Likewise, the unit includes a front-facing camera and built-in 2W speaker for video calls. In addition, users can connect external speakers to the Echo Spot through Bluetooth or a 3.5mm stereo cable.  

"Echo Spot combines the popular small design of Echo Dot, the display of Echo Show, and the features you love about Alexa into an all-new, stylish and compact device," said Tom Taylor, Senior Vice President, Amazon Alexa. "See the weather, watch video news briefings, glance at your alarm clock, check on your kids, and more—we think customers will find lots of places for Echo Spot in their homes."

Amazon's Echo Spot is now up for pre-order for $130. The device is set to launch on December 19.

Sources: Amazon 1, Amazon 2

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Tags: Amazon, Echo, Alexa (all tags)