It’s been almost 2 years since I purchased the Amazon Alexa enabled voice devices. The Echo is a cylindrical device with a fairly decent speaker. The dot is the size of a hockey puck that for really good music playback needs to be connected to a bluetooth speaker.
The reason I am writing this post is that a friend asked me what do I use the Alexa devices in my daily life. I pondered for a minute and thought two years ago I used it for:
News (NPR, BBC)
Find out what’s new on Netflix
Today, the novelty has worn off and I primarily use the devices for music and timers. I do believe that Alexa will blossom in homes with digital appliances (i.e thermostats, security systems, lights etc) will benefit from Alexa enabled devices. You can read more here
If you’re an Amazon prime customer and an audiophile then Alexa enabled devices are for you. If you’re not- buy a better smartphone.
This past Saturday my wife and I entertained several South Americans. For once we were the minority at the dinner table. Quite frankly it made me speak more Spanish, which I should be doing more of. Several of our guests tried to use our Echo with limited success. I don’t think it was there accent but rather the syntax in asking questions. Overall it was pretty frustrating for them.
Totally reliable voice recognition is still a ways off. My experience with the Amazon Echo continues to be pleasant and more productive. Below is a link for Echo users
It’s been a month since I installed my Amazon Echo and 2 dots. I certainly could live without them but I don’t want to and here’s why I’m listening to more music because it just so natural to say “Alexa, play smooth jazz, or Alexa play songs from Spyro Gyra or play The Kindle Chronicles on Tunein radio”.
I don’t wear a watch so I can ask Alexa the time here or in Madrid Spain (where my Spanish Teacher is living). Raise your hand if you can spell phosphorescent. Alexa can.
I don’t have to go to the NPR or BBC website to get my news – Alexa gets it for me.
I never have to worry about forgetting my shopping list when I’m in SuperMaxi because Alexa never forgets. She also reminds me about appointments, timers and holidays.
So I agree with the article below. It’s a must read. What do you think
In my last post I mentioned that I acquired an Amazon Echo and Dot Smart Speaker. I have installed the two devices and what follows are the benefits and one challenge that has developed in the last several days.
I installed the Echo in the living room next to the T.V. The Echo will pick up our voices from the living room, hall, kitchen, dining room and sun room. So far we have used the Echo to:
listen to our (separate) Amazon Prime Music collections
Calendar and todo lists
Manage our Capital One Account including making payments
Listen to Podcasts
The Dot which is the smaller and less expensiveversion of the Echo is paired with a Speaker and is upstairs in Sharon’s Office. She mainly uses the Dot to listen to her music but she likes the “Good Morning Command” which is has an interesting fact of a synopsis of some famous person’s life usually when it is their birthday.
So far the one challenge that the app requires a zip code so you can’t get traffic or listings of restaurants.
Thanks to my mother-in-law, Sharon and I are now the proud owners of an Amazon Echo. Ok, hands up CTL subscribers how many of you have no idea what an Echo is.
Amazon Echo is a smart speaker connected via wifi to The Internet. It can do the following very well:
Play your music or music form Pandora and other apps.
Give you weather forecasts from any place in the world
Updated news headlines
Voice access to Wikipedia and Bing
Timers, Alarms, calendar events, todos
Most importantly the Echo through the Alexa app begins to learn your routines
The Echo has over 3000 developers that have skills that can be loaded into the Amazon Clouds. Here are some examples
NPR news updates
Jeopardy TV game
Capital one Credit Accounts
The Wall St. Journal
My 98 year old mother-in-law is facing some memory challenges. She lives alone but my brother-in-law is just a block away. She often forgets what day it is and has reminders to take medication as well as important phone number.s
In my next post I will explain in detail how I’m using echo in Cuenca.