Amazon has gone nuts today with a range of new Echo devices bound do give what I consider the underdog a lift.
First up is a $149 all-new Echo with updated fabric design improved sound. It will available in Twilight Blue, Charcoal, Heather Grey, and Sandstone.
The Echo is followed by the $99 Echo Dot that now includes a bright LED display to show time, outdoor temperature, timers, and alarms
Topping out the range is the new $329 Echo Studio said to be the best-sounding Echo ever. It packs five directional speakers and Dolby Atmos Processing for immersive sound, room adaptation technology and importantly a built-in smart home hub for RRP $329.
Tom Taylor, Senior Vice President, Amazon Alexa said, “We love hearing feedback from customers about how they use Alexa throughout their day—whether that’s listening to music, dropping in on a loved one, trying out a new recipe, or playing a game with the family,”
“We hope these new Echo devices will give customers even more ways to access Alexa—whether that’s through the best-sounding Echo yet—Echo Studio, a reimagined Echo and Echo Dot.”
Alexa also scores new features such as routines. Alexa learns about your daily life and recommends routines that can set off other smart devices, such as lights or give you the weather each day say at 6am if that’s what you consistently ask for as soon as the alarm goes off.
Alexa will soon be able to explain why it reacted to whatever command you gave. For example, you could say, “Alexa, tell me what you heard” and Alexa will recite back what it believes you asked.
You can then ask, “Alexa, why did you do that?” and Alexa will offer an explanation. Alex is now transparent, Siri do the same.
Plus, Alexa and Echo devices are ramping up are their layers of privacy protections. You can already say “Alexa, delete everything I said today,” or “Alexa, delete what I just said”. However, customers later this year can have voice recordings older than three or 18 months automatically deleted continually.
The new Echo devices are available for pre order today for shipping later this year.