The wave of smart speakers is now set to invade homes here in India. Amazon’s Echo was one of the first the pioneers in smart speakers when they launched in 2015. The speakers are powered by Amazon’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) system called Alexa. To ask the speaker to do any task, you just need to invoke it by voice with the ‘Alexa’ keyword.
They’ve come a long way from the initial version which could answer questions, play music, add items and order them to your shopping list and set reminders. Now a whole slew of third-party Alexa skills allows you to order cabs, food from restaurants, control your smart lights and other smart gadgets at home and more.
Amazon has just started taking pre-orders for these speakers here in India. They’ve got three varieties, starting from the smaller Echo Dot to the larger Echo Plus and the prices ranging from ₹4,999 to ₹14,999. To sweeten the deal for first adopters, they’re dropping 30% of the listed rate and throwing in one year of Amazon Prime membership when you buy these in the next few days.
Which one do I pick?
- Most people would just go with the Amazon Echo Speakers which provides a powerful speaker to fill your room with music. These cost ₹9,999, but with Amazon’s pre-launch discount only costs ₹6,999 if you order now.
- If you’ve already got a great speaker system at home and just want to add Alexa’s Intelligence to your home, go with the Echo Dot, which you can connect to your existing speakers via Bluetooth or 3.5mm stereo cable. You can also pick up multiple of these dots to connect all the rooms in your house.
- If you’re looking to set up a voice controlled smart home, with Philips Hue bulbs and Smart plugs, you should look at the Echo Plus which comes with a built-in smart home hub.
You can check out the Amazon listing for the Echo Speakers to get more details on the device specifications and costs.