Amazon is nothing if not innovative and yesterday the company announced an update to its widely beloved Echo series of Alexa-enabled devices, including a new spherical design, more powerful internals, and a load of other stuff for a reduced prices. Pre-orders are open now in the US and UK.
- US: Grab Amazon Echo (4th-gen), available in three colours, for $99.99
- UK: Get Amazon Echo (4th-gen) + Philips Hue smart bulb for £89.99
The big news here is the redesigned Echo but Amazon also refreshed its Echo Dot lineup (more on that below). Besides the new spherical design, which we personally love, there's improved speaker technology inside, with adaptive sound for any room size or shape, as well as a new Amazon-designed processor to handle voice recognition and analysis.
Basically, these are the smartest Echos that have ever been made and improvements to Alexa mean the Echo can recognise different voices, change its intonation based on the situation, recognise a baby's cry, and a lot more besides.
This could mean we'll see the older line of Echo speakers getting cleared out for some all-time low prices in the Amazon Prime Day deals event next month.
If you don't fancy going for one of the pricier Echos, Amazon also refreshed its Echo Dot lineup, now toting a spherical design too, which offers Alexa and all of the other smart home magic for a fraction of the price in a smaller design, still available in a variety of colours.
Like the higher-end Echo, the Dot includes all of the new voice recognition and speaker tech, offering crisper high-ends and deeper lows. Alexa is on hand to message people, control the lights, set reminders, play tunes, and whatever else.
So, if you've been tempted to upgrade your home into a smart home, starting with an Echo is a very good decision, especially with all of the new tech Amazon has managed to cram inside. The new Echos will be released later in October.