Amazon has an even dozen new smart devices. Here’s how to order

alexa echo fire tv amazon 2018 devices event

Amazon’s annual hardware event took place in September, where the company took the opportunity to rapid-fire a total of 12 new devices at us in under an hour. We were expecting everything from Alexa-powered microwaves to amplifiers, and that’s what we got. And then some.

Here’s the run-down on all the new gadgets coming from Amazon, and what they’ll cost you.

Echo Plus — $150

The new Echo Plus has arrived, and it packs a built-in smart home hub. At $150 we expect it to add compatibility with platforms that haven’t previously been supported by Alexa. The device features a built in temperature sensor as well. We are surprised that Amazon significantly improved the sound of the second-generation Echo Plus. It’s now Amazon’s best-sounding standalone speaker. Find our more in our review.

Amazon

Echo Dot 3.0 — $50

The new Echo Dot 3.0 is here and it’s $50. It’s been a couple years since Amazon’s most popular Alexa device got a face-lift. The third-generation Dot has been drastically overhauled. It’s bigger in size and loses the hockey-puck look. It’s covered in fabric, and is available in charcoal, heather gray, and sandstone. But the biggest change is in the sound. The new Echo Dot is louder and features a richer sound experience. Read more in our full review, and take a closer look at the differences between the second and third generation devices here.

Amazon

Echo Input — The tiniest (and cheapest) echo yet

Details are scant at this moment, but there is a new addition to the Echo family: the Echo Input. At $35 it is the least expensive and tiniest Echo device and comes as part of Amazon’s salvo to compete in multi-room music. This leads us to the, conversely, largest addition to the echo family.

Amazon

Echo Sub — $130

Finally, some bass for your Alexa-loving face! Amazon’s Echo Sub features a 100-watt amp and down-firing 6-inch driver, as expected from the leak. Users will simply add the sub to Echo speakers using the Alexa app. Stereo pairing of two of the same Echo speakers is also available. This device is already available for $130, and you can read our full review here.

Amazon

Echo Link and Link Amp — $200 and $300

Amazon’s begging a pretty penny ($200) for its new Echo Link, a device that lets you wrangle your existing audio system into the Alexa-commanded universe. Armed with an array of inputs, to tie many devices together, it will connect to your stereo or home theater receiver and allow you to stream music to it either independently or as part of a multi-room audio system. There aren’t any microphones on the device, though, so you’ll need at least one other Echo device to control it.

The Link Amp adds inputs and an amplifier section for those with passive speakers who would like to reel their favorite music makers into the modern century. It packs 60-watts per channel and supports Ethernet connection too, possibly for high-resolution audio playback.

Amazon

Amazon Smart Plug –$25

It’s a real thing now! Smart home newbies look for value and immediate function, which makes the Amazon Smart Plug a logical addition to the Alexa world, but we were surprised to learn it includes a small speaker. You won’t listen to music with it, but it’s one more microphone in the array that’s listening and you will be able to hear Alexa replies. You’ll be able to name the plugs what you wish so Alexa knows which device you are trying to control. The plug goes for $25 and will allow voice control of things like lamps, air conditioners, coffee makers, and pretty much anything else you just want to turn on or off with voice.

Amazon

AmazonBasics Microwave — $60

The new $60 microwave has an “Ask Alexa” button and Dash replenishment button so you can track how much popcorn you’ve nuked and have your stock replenished by Amazon’s when needed. Sadly, that’s the buttons lone function for now. Frankly, we’re shocked by the low price, but less shocked by the Dash button. What will you ask Alexa to cook for you?

Amazon

Echo Wall Clock — $30

Didn’t see this one coming! Now you can ask Alexa what time it is as you’re starting at … what time it is. Perhaps those who never took to Analog Clocks will find this useful?

On the more practical side, it is interesting to see Amazon turning to more everyday devices we already use to give folks access to Alexa, although Amazon confirmed on January 23, 2019 that its pulling the device from the market due to connectivity issues.

All New Echo Show — $230

The new show looks a lot like the old version and costs the same at $230, but it’s bigger now with a 10-inch display and has some beefed up audio chops so it should sound better, too. Real-time Dolby processing and bass radiators should make for a much fuller sounding display/speaker, which is a smart move for Amazon considering it is seeing competition from Lenovo and JBL in this space. The device also features a richer sound than the first generation and like the Echo Plus is also smart hub. Read more in our full review.

Amazon

Fire TV Recast — $230

Now Fire TV owners can record broadcast TV on an Alexa-enabled DVR and stream it to their TVs using Fire TV devices and the new Echo Show. Amazon is also touting the Recast’s ability to bring Echo Show-like functionality to any display. The box will apparently offer two tuners and 500 GB of onboard storage. At this point, we know that users will need to connect an antenna and that Amazon has cooked up a familiar-looking on-screen programming guide to help users find and set recording times for their favorite shows. More details to come!

Amazon

Alexa Auto — Invite price: $25 Regular price: $50

She’s already in every room of the house, she might as well be in your car, too. Alexa Auto looks a little like a cassette adapter for your car stereo, but it’s just a bit more advanced than that. It comes with a dash mount and will apparently boot up very quickly, making Alexa available right away. The device will connect to phones via Wi-Fi so it can communicate with the Cloud and will connect to car stereos via auxiliary cable or Bluetooth. Now you can boss Alexa around from behind the wheel and have an option to Siri or The Google Assistant for voice-based music streaming. Invite pricing will be $25. For those of us not invited, the device will retail for $50.

Amazon

Shhhh! Alexa, whisper!

Apparently, Amazon has been working on making Alexa more approachable. You can now whisper to Alexa, and she’ll whisper back. While Alexa-enabled devices have microphones with varying sensitivity, it’s a good bet that one will have to get up close and personal with Alexa in order to elicit this kind of response.

Outside of Alexa’s newfound discretion, Amazon says it is has been hard at work making Alexa smarter and easier to use. That includes kids, as well. The Echo Dot Kids edition will now support routines, allowing children to more easily trigger music playback, light control, and more.

En Guard!

Alexa Guard is a new feature which integrates Echo devices, smart lighting, and security service providers like ADT to help protect your home while you’re away. Rather than have a built-in security system that has glass breaking sensors and smoke detectors, Amazon guard allows the use of echo device microphones to detect sounds like breaking glass and third-party smoke detectors and video doorbells like Ring to work together to protect your home. By alerting Alexa that you are leaving, the digital assistant starts actively listening for sounds which indicate something nefarious is afoot.

Updated January 23, 2019 to note that the Amazon Wall Clock has been pulled off the market due to connectivity issues.

Product Review

4K in home security is finally here, thanks to Arlo’s Ultra UHD smart cam

The 4K home security camera is finally here! Class-leading image clarity and a super-wide field of vision makes Arlo Ultra an early contender for the year’s best smart cam. While there are definite quirks to the device, the device…
Smart Home

From the kitchen to the bedroom, here are the best Alexa tips and tricks

Amazon's voice assistant Alexa has plenty of neat skills. So many, in fact, it seems like new ones appear every day. We've rounded up the top Echo tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your virtual assistant.
Deals

Amazon cuts prices on Echo Dot, Ring security, Fire Tablets, and more for Easter

Amazon slashed prices with deals on Echo Dot, Ring video doorbell and security systems, and Fire Tablets. Some of the best deals are for multiple-unit purchases. Most Ring deals include a free Echo Dot in addition to healthy price cuts.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now (April 2019)

Amazon Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be a major undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Smart Home

I have seen the future, and it’s full of salad-making robots

Think that robots bussing tables, tossing salads and baking bread is a futuristic concept? It's actually not as far away as you might think. Robots took center stage at a food robotics summit in San Francisco this week, where they showed…
Smart Home

Ecobee leverages humor in a heated discussion with climate change skeptics

Ecobee cranked up the heat on climate change doubters. In observance of Earth Day, Ecobee and ad agency DCX released video of a social experiment that tested the effectiveness of humor in easing tension during discussions with skeptics.
Smart Home

Miele stuns with wireless probe, self-descaling java pot, and other new products

Miele rocked KBIS 2019 with waves of new appliances and features. The annual Kitchen and Bathroom Industry Show is all about product launches and Miele's appliance reveal was like New York Fashion Week with a single designer.
Deals

Shark, Ecovacs, and Roomba robot vacuums get price cuts for spring

The weather's getting nice again, and we're all emerging from our winter-long hibernation. So it's time once again to also start on that spring cleaning you've been putting off. But who really wants to clean when you'd rather be outside? We…
Smart Home

Echo Plus (1st-gen) vs. Echo Plus (2nd-gen): How exactly do they compare?

Which Echo Plus should you buy? This guide compares the first-generation Echo Plus its latest successor, allowing you to get a better idea regarding the ins and outs of each device.
Smart Home

Making hard-boiled eggs isn’t hard — here’s how to do it perfectly every time

With the help of science or some kitchen gadgets, making hard-boiled eggs can be a little easier. It may not be the hardest task in the world, but a few of these methods are foolproof.
Deals

Amazon and Best Buy smash prices on August smart home security locks

Amazon and Best Buy have the lowest prices for two August smart home door locks during a limited time sale. August was one of the first smart door lock companies designed specifically for smart home convenience and security.
Deals

The best Amazon Prime Day 2019 deals: Everything you need to know

Amazon Prime Day 2019 is still a few months off, but it's never too early to start preparing. We've been taking a look at the best discounts from previous Prime Days to give you our predictions of what to expect this year.
Smart Home

Get baked while you bake with these clever cannabis cooking gadgets

Ready to step up your edibles game? Here are the best cannabis cooking gadgets for your kitchen, from an "Instant Pot" for your cannabutter to the best grinders and decarbing devices on the market. Check out the full list for more.