Coolest Alexa Enabled Devices – November 2017

posted in: Alexa, Amazon, Ecobee, Google Home, Sonos | 0

Do you think Alexa is confined to a cylinder on your counter or your Fire TV?  Think again.  Every day Alexa is showing up in more products from radios to watches to cell phone car mounts.  And that’s not all.  With a little know how or a good tutorial, you can easily create your own Alexa enabled device with a Raspberry Pi and Amazon’s official Alexa Voice Service project.

Here’s a link to the full list of Alexa enabled devices currently being sold on Amazon, and I’m sure there are even more out in the wild.  Here are some of the coolest Alexa enabled devices on the list.

Sonos One:

The Sonos One blends the awesome sound quality and multi room support of the Sonos Play:1 with the functionality of Alexa.  As an added bonus, Sonos plans to release Google Home support as well, all in the same device!

This is a phenomenal entry level product to the Sonos, Echo and Google Home ecosystems and I fully expect to see the $199 price tag drop for the holidays.

 

 


ecobee4 Alexa Enabled Thermostat:

This is a great way to add Alexa to more rooms in your house, while upgrading your HVAC controls without having to have separate devices.  This ecobee4 thermostat also comes with an additional room sensor (you can purchase even more) to help the thermostat compensate for hot or cold areas of your home.

The ecobee4 thermostat is arguably one of the best smart thermostats on the market.  It has an easy to read touch screen that displays more than just the current heat/AC settings.  Plus it has a fully featured Amazon Echo baked right in.  I would love to see this be able to use the screen to display Alexa results on the screen, but that feature may already be in the works.  This is the one device on the list that could easily pay for itself over time.

 


HTC U11:

This is the first phone with built in hands free Alexa.  No need to tap a button or unlock your phone, just say “Alexa” and she’s listening.

This Android phone boasts a DXO mark of 90: 16 MP front facing camera and 12MP UltraPixel rear-facing camera with Optical Image Stabilization, HDR Boost, and UltraSpeed Autofocus.  The body is curved glass wrapped around a rigid metal frame with 5.5” Corning Gorilla Glass 5 Quad HD Display. IP67 water and dust resistance. Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 with octa-core processor.  Its Edge Sense technology lets you interact with the phone by squeezing the sides.  And it comes in silver, black, blue or red.


Logitech ZeroTouch Air Vent Car Mount:

This stupidly named cell phone mount brings more than just Alexa to your car.  The car mount and companion app give Alexa the ability to text, call, navigate, chat and manage your calendar or email.  You also get all of the features available to Alexa, including over 10,000 skills.

If you’re not into air vent cell phone mounts, and prefer a dashboard mount, Logitech has you covered.  For an additional $20 (an absurd markup for slightly more plastic, a hinge and some adhesive), you can get the ZeroTouch dashboard mount.

Whether you’re looking to update an old car or you’re looking for a better alternative to your existing in car hands free system, at $59-$79 this is worth a try.

 


Guess CONNECT Smartwatch with Alexa:

Like them or not, smartwatches are here to stay.  Guess blends the familiarity of an analog watch with the features and convenience of a smartwatch in a (*sometimes) stylish package.  The face of the watch is 90% analog, with a small digital screen embedded in the bottom, the mic/speaker and charging port are on the side.  A tap of the watch face and you have access to all the features of Alexa right on your wrist!

*A quick aside, I chose the picture on the left specifically for the absurd gold/leopard/diamond style that Guess felt the need to create, but I swear there are some really good looking watches if you check the link!

According to Guess, the watch will run for 3-5 days on a single charge with Alexa enabled, or up to two years in analog mode.  That’s far longer than almost any other smartwatch on the market, although the digital screen isn’t nearly as useful as most smartwatches.  Currently, these are selling for around $249 (all except the leopard one, which you can have for $238).

 

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