Amazon Echo review: Loud enough for a medium-sized room
Amazon has come a long way in the smart speaker market and the third-gen Echo is a testament to that.
Key highlight: Improved audio support
It’s fair to say that skepticism around smart speakers is dead and buried for good now. Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Assistant and Apple’s Siri seemed to have found a comfortable space in people’s homes. Even though Amazon’s market share has been chipped at by competition, the Jeff Bezos-led behemoth remains the leader by launching new Echo smart speakers routinely. The latest addition is the third-generation Echo speaker with the ubiquitous influence of Alexa.
In terms of design, Amazon hasn’t done anything different as this Echo looks identical to the Echo Plus launched last year. It’s about 6-inches tall and four inches wide. Amazon has packed a 3-inch woofer and 0.8-inch tweeter inside the Echo.
The third-generation Echo is loud enough for a medium-sized room, and Amazon has given an array of microphones that makes it possible for you to have a normal-pitched conversation with Alexa. One doesn’t have to shout or be loud when giving voice commands. Compare the audio quality of the new Echo speaker with Echo Plus and perhaps there’s little difference . However, compare it to the second-gen Echo and there’s a world of difference. Amazon has given a punchier bass in the new Echo and makes a huge difference to the overall audio quality.
Alexa remains smart and responsive as ever with new skills added by Amazon on a routine basis. You can ask stuff like weather updates, get reminders, add a shopping list and Alexa is at hand to help with them. In fact, this is the first time that you can get Alexa to speak in Hindi.
The Amazon Echo at this price is a good buy — be it listening to music or getting Alexa to do tasks like managing smart home devices, it delivers what it promises. Amazon has come a long way in the smart speaker market and the third-gen Echo is a testament to that.
This particular Amazon Echo, however, finds itself in a conundrum as it faces maximum competition from its other siblings. If you don’t want to spend this much, you can always get the smaller Echo Dot. If you want to spend more and get a smart speaker with a display then there’s the Echo Show. However, if you are in the market as a first-time buyer of smart speakers armed with a budget of Rs 10,000, this Echo device fits the bill perfectly.