In the world of IT, new and fun gadgets are being released all the time, but how about personalities? We have seen them before, with Siri and Apple products as well as Cortana on Windows. Lately, there is a new girl in town and she is stealing the show! Her name is Alexa. Alexa was originally created as an IT personal assistant developed by Amazon126Lab for their product(s) the Echo, as well as the Echo’s mini-me, the Amazon Dot. Both of these devices are smart speakers that work to streamline the idea of a connected home. With all of the different tech brands in fierce competition to monopolize the connected home market, Alexa has snuck in and secretly taken over!
The Echo and the Dot are not just smart speakers; Alexa is their best quality! She can:
- Playback music from any platform
- Create to-do and grocery lists
- Set alarms
- Stream podcasts
- Play audio-books
- Provide weather, traffic and other real time updates
- Sync with other SmartHome tech like Nest thermostats or TP Light blubs
The main difference between the Echo and the Dot is that the Echo has the speaker built into it (9 in.) and the other is a smaller speaker that resembles a hockey puck. The Dot’s Bluetooth capabilities allow you to connect directly to whatever sound system your home may already have in place. The Echo is priced at $179.99 and the Dot is priced at $49.99.
The coolest part is that any product that includes Alexa also comes with a companion app. You can download the app to your phone and enjoy a fully customizable experience. She is an artificial intelligence platform that acts as your 21st century radio and butler combined! She can do everything for you but deliver you a beverage. Although, she can order pizza for you! 🙂
Alexa’s platform has impressed many manufacturers in the smart home market and, excitingly enough, the software is able to be a component for other great brands outside of Amazon! A few of the brands choosing to incorporate Alexa into their products are the new LG Smart refrigerator, as well as Ford, who will use the Alexa platform in their new release of all of their cars running with Sync 3 voice controls. If all goes according to plan for Amazon, this is one lady you wont be able to live without in the future!