If you’re a fan of the highly capable Alexa voice assistant, the versatile app, and the easy connection with Amazon and smart home devices, then you definitely want a smart speaker with built-in Alexa capabilities. But which one? Amazon, of course, has its own line of Echo speakers that are designed for use with Alexa, but they aren't the only brand that supports Alexa for easy voice commands.
For this list, we focused on the best smart speakers you can find with Alexa built-in. These speakers allow you to make calls to your contacts, play music from your favorite streaming service, set up smart home routines, and even have Alexa help guard your home. Take a look!
Sonos One (Gen 2)
Best Alexa speaker for the smart home
- Alexa and Google Assistant support
- High-quality audio
- Sonos pairing support with other speakers
- Needs to be plugged in and connected to Wi-Fi to work
The Sonos One is an all-around incredible smart speaker, designed to sit on a shelf or counter and fill a room with sound. With the addition of Alexa, you can also tap into the voice assistant’s wide range of capabilities, like answering questions or scheduling reminders and timers. The speaker also works with Google Assistant, so there’s no need to pick a favorite unless you want to.
Like most smart speakers, the Sonos One does require a Wi-Fi connection for voice assistants to work, but it also supports Airplay 2 and other technologies, along with easy app controls if you don’t feel like using your voice. It can also link easily to another Sonos speaker or speaker system, allowing for innovative setups from being part of a home theater system to linking two speakers together for more stereo-like sound.
Amazon Echo (4th Gen)
Best Alexa speaker for Amazon fans
- Charming new spherical design
- Dazzling LED light ring
- Acts as an Amazon Sidewalk Bridge
- Great sounding audio
- Bass strains at highest volume
Amazon’s flagship Echo device doesn’t disappoint with its new orb-like design that still has great 360-degree sound for the size. The speaker works solely via the Alexa app, so you don’t have to worry about juggling apps to get what you want.
The rounded design is also in the speaker’s favor, making it easy to put anywhere and giving it graceful indicators like the LED base to show notifications and more. Amazon also has both a battery base accessory so that you don’t need to keep the speaker near an outlet and a wall mount if you don’t want to place the Echo on a counter — options that are rarely native to smart speakers.
Amazon Echo Studio
Best Alexa speaker for audiophiles
- Class-leading bass
- Slick and simple setup
- Dolby Atmos and 360 Reality Audio support
- Large, sprawling soundstage
- All the Alexa smarts
- Midrange occasionally muffled
- Brittle touch to lighter instruments
- 3D music still in limited supply
Those primarily interested in sound may already have invested in a high-quality audio system or started listening to more spatial audio songs: The Echo Studio is a great companion to this setup with its focus on music and a larger design featuring five internal speakers to cover bass, midrange, and highs more completely. The speaker also includes sensors that can adapt the audio to the nearby acoustics no matter where you decide to place the speaker.
For those who have a host of smart devices, the Studio is also one of the only Alexa speakers left that can support the older Zigbee smart protocol, which may be important for controlling certain devices in your home. This is also a good time to mention that Alexa allows you to choose a default music service to play from including Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, and more, which makes giving song-related commands a lot easier.
Amazon Echo Show 15
Best Alexa smart display
- Huge 15.6-inch screen
- Widget functionality makes it easy to see tasks, smart home, and more at a glance
- Different orientation options
- Visual ID swaps between users
- Lacks customization and personalization options
- Software crashes without explanation
The Echo Show line adds a touchscreen to the Echo speaker, something we really like for its expanded options – you can use it to watch shows, view a photo slideshow, video chat, and do a whole lot more. While the Echo Show 10 was a fine example, its rotating display certainly wasn’t for everyone. But the Echo Show 15 is a massive improvement: The screen is larger than ever at 15 inches, and it sports a versatile design that allows you to hang the Show 15 on a wall or stand it on a counter.
These qualities make the Echo Show 15 one of the best smart displays we’ve seen to date, especially when you want to use it to watch shows or as an interactive wall calendar or – well, so much more. It fits well in a kitchen, office, hallway, or similar spot in the home. Just remember to keep it within arm’s reach, and purchase the stand if you need it.
Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)
Best Alexa smart speaker
- Compact footprint
- Vastly improved sound quality
- Clock shows more useful info
- New temperature sensor
- Added Wi-Fi features
- Only works as Wi-Fi booster if you're already on Amazon eero network
The Echo Dot 4 was a vast improvement to the Echo Dot line, staying affordable while offering surprisingly big sound for its size. But the Echo Dot 5th-generation made even more improvements to the model, making it a better fit for a smart home.
Let’s start with the model options: There’s an LED version you can use as an alarm clock in places like the bedroom and a kids' version with colorful skins and a subscription to Amazon’s kids' content. The new speaker is also equipped with extra sensors to detect when someone has entered a room, allowing you to link it to things like smart lights or thermostat changes when people come home.
There’s even compatibility with Eero’s mesh Wi-Fi network system (now also owned by Amazon), so the speaker can act as a Wi-Fi extender for spots in the house that may not be getting good coverage. Really, it’s amazing what the speaker can do for the price.
Bose Home Speaker 500
Best high-end Alexa speaker
- Expansive stereo sound
- Sleek, attractive design
- Choice of Alexa or Google Assistant
- Easy-to-use controls
- Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and line-in options
- AirPlay 2
- Some music services not supported
- Slightly awkward multiroom control
- No Chromecast option for Android
Those who want a little of everything may finally find their perfect solution in this Bose model. It’s a large speaker that produces seriously impressive sound and supports both Alexa and Google Assistant. There are also more sound options than most smart speakers with touch panel presets for your favorite music options and adjustments via the Bose Music app.
The speaker even has a little mini display that can display the current song and some album artwork, making it easy to show off at parties and other get-togethers. But all these features do come at a price, and it’s no surprise this there's a hefty price tag here too.
Best portable speaker with Alexa support
- Excellent design
- Lightweight and portable
- Totally water and dustproof
- Very good sound for its size
- Choice of smart speaker assistants
- Wireless charging
- No Bluetooth stereo pairing
- Doesn’t work as a speakerphone
- Less battery life than some other speakers
If you want to bring your smart speaker on the road with you, then look no further than the Sonos Roam. Offering a waterproof design, impressive sound, and full support for Amazon Alexa, few portable speakers can match the spec sheet of the Sonos Roam. It’s also relatively affordable, clocking in under $200.
Because it’s built by Sonos, you know you’re getting a product that can pump out incredible sound despite its tiny footprint. Much of that is due to its accompanying smartphone app that lets you adjust its settings on the fly, along with an Automatic Trueplay feature that optimizes performance based on the acoustics of your surroundings.
Toss in multiple available colors, a battery that runs for ten hours on a single charge, and a simple setup process, and you’ve got one of the best portable Amazon Alexa smart speakers money can buy.
Best affordable speaker with Alexa support
- The price is right
- Decent sound
- Mostly all the features
- Bonus Eero extender
- No aux input
Clocking in at just $40, the Echo Pop offers much more than its price tag would suggest. Access to the Alexa voice assistant is the biggest selling point, but its audio output is no slouch – although it does start to get a bit distorted at higher volumes. It also comes with Eero built in, making your wireless connections better than ever. A vareity of color options are available, and if you're looking for an affordable way to bring Alexa integrations into your home, the Pop deserves a much closer look. It might not be a great fit for audiophiles, but it's well-suited for playing background music as you work.
Frequently Asked Questions
The most important thing in a voice assistant is that it's compatible with your other smart home devices. Check for compatibility before buying. But this has improved over time. As for the voice assistant itself, we've found that it does some things better, while other assistants like Google's have their strengths, too. Alexa is particularly good at a wide variety of voice commands, while other voice assistants are a bit more accurate for internet searches.
Yes. There is no fee necessary to use Alexa, although some services that Alexa can access may require fees, like Apple Music or Amazon Prime.
Voice assistants like Alexa only activate when speakers pick up their wake word, which is usually set to "Alexa" or "Echo" in this case. Then they typically record the command that follows. You can adjust settings so that commands are immediately discarded rather than saved for analysis. You can also manually shut off mics whenever you want.
Yes, all Alexa speakers have Bluetooth, which means you can quickly pair it to a phone or tablet to play music.
Are you looking for something a little more portable that still works with Alexa? Take a look at our current best picks for portable smart speakers. You’re likely to find some options that support the voice assistant.
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