Amazon Echo Sub initial review: Getting serious about sound

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Among the lot, the Echo Auto is the entirely new product but the trio of Echo Plus, Echo Show and Echo Dot are upgraded versions of already existing Amazon smart home products. Some of it is interesting; some of it is just an update of the same smart home gear you already have.

Alexa is also busting out of the Echo speakers' curved plastic casing-and will now respond directly to commands on a new $60 (around ₹4,300) AmazonBasics-branded microwave oven.

The microwave won't have full Alexa functionality, meaning it can't tell you the weather or play music for you (because, boy, that would've been useful), but you can control it through a nearby Echo speaker.

It still features both Bluetooth and aux output that can be used to hook it up to a bigger speaker. It can be paired with an Echo to create a more robust sound system with powerful bass.

But Amazon is trying to shorten that gap.

Rumors have been flying about since the middle of 2017 that Facebook is building a smart speaker with a large touchscreen to rival Amazon's Echo Show. You'll find the new Echo Dot on Amazon for sale right now for approximately $50 United States dollars.

And you thought Amazon's crafty consumerism ended with the microwave.

Amazon recently passed the 20,000 mark for smart home devices made by the Seattle-based company or partners.

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The Echo Sub isn't the most appealing device to look at - it's not even instantly recognisable as an Echo we'd suggest.

Echo Auto has a built-in 8-microphone stack designed for in-car acoustics, Echo Auto can hear you over music, A/C, and road noise.

More than 15 global automakers, including General Motors, Hyundai, and Nissan, have added Alexa skills for their cars, according to Amazon. After all, a device that can listen to you inside your home all the time should cause some concern.

This isn't a piece of hardware, but Amazon announced today the launch of a new "Alexa Guard" feature that you'll be able to trigger by saying a phrase like, "Alexa, I'm leaving".

The Echo Sub is an optional subwoofer for use with Echo speakers. You can also set them to turn your smart lights on and off to mimic someone being home, kind of like that movie with that kid who beat up the house-robbing criminals in the wintertime.

Limp unveiled a "frustration free setup" platform meant to grow into a framework that any smart device maker can use to make getting gadgets to talk to Alexa as easy as plugging them into outlets.

The top is rather plasticky though and while it's hardly likely people will be put off by this, it's clear that the finish quality isn't as good as the super-expensive Apple HomePod or, say, a Sonos device.

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