The Amazon Echo remains the king of the smart speakers. These clever devices offer a swathe of useful features which can all be initiated via simple voice commands. Using the built-in Alexa assistant you can ask for music to be played, timers to be set, lights switched on or the heating pumped up to the max.
The Echo can also give you the latest travel updates, weather reports and there are regular news bulletins from services such as the BBC.
Since the Echo launched back in 2015 these smart speakers have grown in popularity and that’s probably no surprise with Amazon releasing regular updates and new products onto the market at a rapid rate.
One of the latest speakers to arrive is the Echo Studio which offers one of the best audio experience yet from an Amazon device.
This speaker gets a 5.25-inch woofer and 330W of peak power which produces deep, rich bass by using the bass port at the bottom to maximise airflow and bass output from the woofer.
Echo Studio has a 1-inch tweeter and three 2-inch midrange speakers that deliver dynamic midranges and crisp, high frequencies. Plus, it has a 24-bit DAC and a power amplifier with 100 kHz of bandwidth for high-res and lossless music playback.
To get the most out of this speaker, Amazon recommends upgrading your audio subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited HD.
This service beams tracks to the speaker at a much higher bitrate with it offering an experience that sounds more like the artist intended.
This premium plan usually costs £14.99 per month but Amazon is currently offering a free 90-day trial.
YOU CAN FIND THE DEAL HERE
It’s worth noting that once the deal has ended you will automatically start paying the full price so make sure you want to keep it or cancel once the free period has ended.
Along with that free subscription, Amazon has also just released its usual weekly Alexa update and if you want to try some new things here’s some great questions to ask Alexa.
NEW THINGS TO ASK ALEXA
“Alexa, read ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’”
Step back in time and discover the 19th century English society in Charles Dickens’ novel. Free on Echo until 31 January.
“Alexa, speak slower”
Adjust Alexa’s speaking rate to make your interactions even more natural based on your preferences. You can also say, “Alexa, speak faster”. To reset Alexa’s speaking rate, just say, “Alexa, speak at your default rate”.
“Alexa, what have you learned today?”
“Alexa, play talkSPORT”
“Alexa, play the Radiolab podcast”
“Alexa, what’s the capital of Tanzania?”
“Alexa, what’s the forecast for Rome?”
“Alexa, play Trivia Hero”
“Alexa, add a to-do”
“Alexa, pair my phone”
“Alexa, where’s the nearest cinema?”
To receive locally relevant results, make sure to set up your location in your Alexa App. Go to the Devices icon in the bottom right hand corner, Echo & Alexa, select your Echo device, add your address under Device Location.
“Alexa, tell me a joke about coffee”
“Alexa, set a chicken timer”