The smart speaker war is heating up and the price of those great assistants are just getting better from consumer’s angle.
If you don’t want to wait until Black Friday (even it’s just 3 weeks away), Cyber Monday, or X’mas for the better deals which you might or might not have from those smart speakers, you should go ahead and get one Amazon Echo Dot today. There is no guarantee that you will get a better deal on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or X’mas; however, you will be only paying for less than 40 bucks to get your hands on the adorable Amazon Echo Dot today for certain.
The Smart Speaker Is Getting Smarter Every Single Day
It is really the time for everyone to put their hands onto those smart speakers since the price is at the affordable range (well… more than affordable… to be fair) and it’s just getting smarter and smarter every single day.
Either you would like to get an Amazon Echo Dot or Google Home Mini smart speaker, you can expect to pay less than $40 USD if you act on it today.
Google Home Mini – $25 USD ($24.99 OFF) from Walmart (after a $25 USD coupon which can be used on the next purchase on Walmart.com)
Amazon Echo Dot – $39.99 USD ($10.00 OFF) Today Only
They are really skillful and they are learning new skills and providing you all sorts of different assistances whenever you need. For instance, do you know that you can have some fun for the Halloween which is tomorrow by enabling the “Trick or Treat Unicef” skill?
“Alexa, open Trick or Treat Unicef”,
“Alexa, ask Trick or Treat Unicef for fun facts about halloween”,
“Alexa, ask Trick or Treat Unicef to play spooky sounds”
The Smart Home Integration Is Just Getting Better
Note: we are going to focus on the Amazon Echo Devices since they are still leading the market and they are having more features comparing with what Google Home can offer as of today.
From the basic voice commands to turn off/on lights, to control smart plugs, and to adjust the temperature on the smart thermostat, the smart speaker (we are going to call it as the home ai assistant) is getting much more competent on handling those tasks and even into more detail.
Dimming the lights (if your smart lights products support it)
3rd party vendors put their main focus on Amazon Echo platform; therefore, you can expect that most of the functionalities your IoT products offer, you can assign those tasks to Alexa without any issues. For instance, if your smart light products support the dimming feature, you will be able to just use the voice command telling Alexa to dim the lights or even change the colors. You really don’t need to have another app to control that besides your home ai assistant. What does this mean? It meant that if you set up your home with couple of different brands smart light bulbs, you might need to control some of the features through couple of different apps (e.g., philips light bulbs, singled light bulbs… etc). Now, you can just assign those jobs to Alexa and ask her to dim the lights, change the colors, and maybe flashing the lights if you want.
Make Phone Calls & Text Your Mom
Simply feel lonely and wants to talk to someone? Well… you don’t even need your phone anymore… just ask Alexa to place calls and you can be connected to that person and starting the conversation right from where you are (doing). Or… you just wanna send a quick text message reminder to your mom about the dinner tonight and you are cooking with greasy hands… well… tell Alexa to do that for you and you can just focus on making a delicious dinner for tonight 🙂
Hands-Free Amazon Prime Video
That’s right. In U.S. alone, there are more than 86 millions prime members consuming prime videos every single month (well… some of us might not watch it every day though). Amazon Echo Devices are the only smart speakers in the world can help you navigate through the prime video database to bring up the tv shows or movies which you would like to watch. Google assistant won’t be able to do this… only Alexa is able to do so.
Note: Alexa can also help you on the service you have from your TV service provider. You enable the Alexa Video Skill for your video or TV service provider, you can use your voice to change channels, find and play movies and TV shows, and control playback.
Alexa Play Your Favorite Music From Spotify and Pandora
If you are a music fanatic, you must have a Spotify or Pandora account. You can link your account(s) with Alexa and then … simply ask Alexa so search and play your favorite songs for you.
“Alexa, play [artist] radio on Pandora.”
“Alexa, create a [artist] station.”
“ Alexa, Thumb up this song,”
“Alexa, skip this song.”
“Alexa, Pause/Stop/Play music.”
“Alexa, volume up,” or “Alexa, volume down.”
“Alexa, what is playing?” or “Alexa, what song is this?”
Read Kindle Books with Alexa
You can simply ask Alexa to read eligible Kindle books in your library. This is different from asking Alexa reading the audible books you have in your audible books library.
“Alexa can read Kindle books that support Text-to-Speech technology used for Wikipedia articles, news articles, and calendar events.”
Note: Of course, you can simply ask Alexa to read your audible books from your audible books library. To be honest, it's not that convenient in one area which is that it can only resume the book that you are on currently. For instance, if you have 20 audible books and you are currently on book 15 but you want to listen to book 8... well... you have to open your audible book app on your phone (or listen to it on any devices other than echo devices first), choose that book, and listen to that book then ... you can resume it on the Echo devices. more info from here.
Wanna Have More?
Alexa became a platform already… it’s just like the computer operating system which we are pretty familiar with. Main stream consumers use windows, mac, and linux OS normally. Now… Alexa is becoming the dominant force on the smart home operating system turf. Google is trying to catch up … other players are … well… way behind… we can expect that this game is going to just get much more interesting and much more innovations are going to come out from there as well. Stay tuned & start playing with your home ai assistant today.