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Amazon Echo Dot

(3rd gen) review

HIGHS

Impressive full sound quality
Inexpensive introduction to smart home control
Alexa smarter than ever
Improved aesthetic befitting modern home design
Better microphone sensitivity

LOWS

Fabric covering could show dirt over time
New power port is less universal
Not ideal for music

The Echo Dot has always been smarter than a speaker. Amazon’s latest low-cost Alexa-powered smart speaker, the third-generation Echo Dot, looks better, sounds better, but still costs the same budget-friendly £50.

When the second-generation Echo Dot launched, it had very little in the way of competition. Having everything that was good about Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant squeezed into a smaller package half the price of the bigger Echo, it was a no-brainer.

On top, you get the same control as on the previous Echo Dot: there are volume buttons, a mic mute button to stop Alexa listening in, and an activation button, just in case the Dot doesn’t want to pick up your voice. While physical controls are useful to have, most of the time you won’t need them.

The new Dot’s slightly wider base is treated with an even grippier spread of anti-slide silicon, and it feels great. The top of the speaker sports the same array of four control buttons, each next to a pin-sized microphone hole, though the microphone mute button has a different icon this time around.

The circumference of the speaker is wrapped in fabric depending on color choice. One surprising change for the new Dot is a new power connection. Amazon has ditched the micro-USB port and gone with a small cylindrical DC power tip and a rounded wall plug.

Add Alexa to your Room

Features

Under the fabric hood is a single 1.6-inch speaker firing 360-degrees. This is a big jump up from the prior models, which used one tiny speaker and let the sound leak out of multiple port holes in a weak effort to convince users that it broadcast sound out in every direction.

  • Our most popular smart speaker – Now with a fabric design and improved speaker for richer and louder sound.
  • Pair with existing devices for bigger sound – For rich stereo audio, pair with a second Echo Dot (3rd Gen). Or, connect to your own speakers via Bluetooth or 3.5 mm audio cable.
  • “Alexa, play music everywhere” – Just ask Alexa to stream songs from Amazon Music, Apple Music, Spotify, Sirius XM, and others. Play the same song throughout your home with compatible Echo devices in different rooms.
  • Access Alexa all over the house – Ask Alexa to play music, answer questions, read the news, check the weather, and set alarms from Echo devices in any room.
  • Connect with friends and family – Call almost anyone on compatible Echo device hands-free. Instantly drop in on a compatible Echo device. Or make an announcement to devices throughout the house.
  • Voice control your whole home – Turn on lights, adjust thermostats, view cameras, and lock doors with compatible smart devices.
  • Do more with Alexa skills – With 50,000+ skills, Alexa is always getting smarter and can help you do things like track your fitness, play games, and listen to podcasts.

"Alexa play top hits"

Use your voice to play a song, artist, or genre through Amazon Music, Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora, and others. With compatible Echo devices in different rooms, you can fill your whole home with music. Also listen to Audible, podcasts, radio stations, or pair with Fire TV to voice control movies and entertainment.

Always ready to help

Make your life easier at home. Use your voice to set timers, add items to lists, and create calendar events and reminders. You can also check the news, weather, or traffic. Ask for sports scores, movie showtimes, restaurant hours, or information.

Voice control your smart home

Switch on the lamp before getting out of bed, turn on the coffee maker on your way to the kitchen, or dim the lights from the couch to watch a movie—all without lifting a finger.

Control multiple devices with a single voice command, like locking the doors and turning off the lights at night. Learn more about over 10,000 compatible smart home devices, including lights, thermostats, TVs, and more.

Connect with others

Call almost anyone hands-free using your voice. Use Drop-In to instantly connect to another compatible Echo at home or send an announcement across Echo devices, like calling the family for dinner or reminding the kids to go to bed. Plus, now with Skype calling stay in touch with friends and family in over 150 countries.

Alexa for kids

Make your Echo, Echo Dot, or Echo Plus just for kids at no extra charge by enabling Amazon FreeTime in the Alexa app. Automatically filter explicit songs, add approved contacts, set time limits, or review activity with easy-to-use parental controls in the Amazon Parent Dashboard.

Simple steps to setup and use amazon echo dot

Size

3.9” x 3.9” x 1.7” (99 mm x 99 mm x 43 mm)

Weight

10.6 oz. (300 grams) Actual size and weight may vary by manufacturing process

Wi-Fi connectivity

Dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 and 5 GHz) networks. Does not support connecting to ad-hoc (or peer-to-peer) Wi-Fi networks.

Bluetooth connectivity

Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) support for audio streaming from your mobile device to Echo Dot or from Echo Dot to your Bluetooth speaker. Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) for voice control of connected mobile devices. Hands-free voice control is not supported for Mac OS X devices. Bluetooth speakers requiring PIN codes are not supported.

Audio

Built-in speaker for voice feedback when not connected to external speakers. 3.5 mm stereo audio output for use with external speakers (audio cable not included).

System Requirements

Echo Dot comes ready to connect to your Wi-Fi. The Alexa App is compatible with Fire OS, Android, and iOS devices and also accessible via your web browser. A list of supported operating systems can be found here. Certain skills and services may require subscription or other fees.

Summary
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Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen)
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