Which is the Best Amazon Alexa Device for You?

What is the best Amazon Alexa device?

Why You Need Amazon Alexa As Your New BFF

Recently I took the dive into the world of Alexa (artificial intelligence) and bought my family an Echo Dot. My kids instantly took to Alexa, our virtual voice assistant. She’s smart, charming, and a lot of fun to have around!

Today I’m going to explain to you exactly WHAT Amazon Alexa is, what she can do, and I’ll help you decide which is the best Amazon Alexa device for you.

By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll see why Alexa is kind of a big deal! And I bet you’ll want her in your home too. 🙂

Before I dive into the devices though, I want to talk to you about Alexa. 

What is Alexa? How Does it Work?

Alexa is the “Siri” of Amazon Devices. Although, in my opinion, she can do far more than Siri! She is “artificial intelligence” and can be considered your family’s virtual assistant if you utilize her skills!

She is there to answer any question or command that you may have. All you have to do is say, “Alexa…” and she will respond to you. You can ask her to:

  • Tell you what the weather is like
  • Buy something on Amazon
  • Add something to your shopping list (not just Amazon shopping list by the way)
  • Turn off the lights (if you have a smart home… more on that later)
  • Tell you a joke
  • and way more!

Alexa does just about anything. She truly can make a mom invincible! Here are just a few of the reasons why I love Alexa…

Awesome Features of Amazon Alexa

Amazon Alexa

Ask for Help

You can ask Alexa whatever question you have on your mind! She can search the internet and give you whatever answer you are in need of.

Sound Commands

Just by your saying “mute” or “sounds up” you can change the volume of the device just with your voice.

Shopping List

When I am elbows deep in cooking and I use up an ingredient, rather than stopping to write it down on my shopping list, OR thinking that I’ll remember to do it later (which I never do), I simply tell Alexa to add whatever it is to my shopping list. Later when I’m at the store, I can open the Alexa app on my phone and make sure I pick those items up!

Entertainment

You can play music, audiobooks, radio stations, chapter books, or even have her read you your Kindle book! Alexa can control all your entertainment needs just by using your voice.

My boys love that she will tell you the updates to all the football games then and there! She knows all league standings, final scores, and stats!

She can also play music from Spotify, Pandora, Prime Music, and more! You can even tell her to give the song a like or a thumbs down!

Link Devices

You can put multiple devices in your house and say “Alexa play top hits in all rooms” and the music will fill the entire house. You can also say, “Alexa play top hits in the living room and Disney music in the toy room” and she will follow your every command.

News

Alexa also knows all the news happening in your local area, your country, and the world! All you have to do is ask her, “Alexa, what is the news?” and she will share all that she knows. She can also tell you the weather forecast while she is at it.

Alarms and Timers

She can be your personal clock! You can set specific alarms, recurring alarms (like 5AM every Thursday), or even just timers! Once you put dinner in the oven you can say, “Alexa, set a timer for 45 minutes” and she will do it!

Calls and Messaging

This is probably my favorite part of the Amazon Devices. You can call and send texts using your device. That means when my kids are home alone, they can call me anytime! All they have to do is say, “Alexa, call Cathy” and it will call me!

This is perfect for elderly people as well because they can get support 24-7 in case there is an emergency.

Academics

Alexa is SUPER smart! She can do math problems, give you definitions, answer the toughest questions, and even teach you how to spell! Just make sure she doesn’t end up doing all your children’s math homework 🙂

Drop In

Drop-Ins are awesome! You can literally select a room where a device is placed and have the audio in that room played to you! So you can say, “Alexa, drop in on the boy’s room” and you will be able to hear if they are sound asleep or not.

This is super useful when you are out of the house! You can also use it as a way to wake up your kids. Just drop in on their room and say “Wake up! Time for school!” and they will hear your voice and hopefully get up!

Amazon

Since all of these devices are powered by Amazon, you are able to do just about ANYTHING in Amazon on them. You can reorder essentials, track packages, add things to your shopping cart, buy movies or music, or even ask about the day’s deals!

To Do List/Reminders

You are able to make a to-do list that doesn’t require writing anything down! You can have her remind you of the things you need to do (and tell her when to remind you) OR you can just tell her to add things to your list and you can check up on it on your own.

Smart Home

This is something we are slowly building. Basically, as you add smart devices you can control them with your Alexa device! You can:

  • Turn the lights on
  • Adjust the temperature
  • Lock the door
  • Find your phone
  • Control the TV
  • Connect Bluetooth devices
  • Close your garage door; and
  • Even turn on your oven!

These are AWESOME tools that could save loads of time!

Jokes and Games

Alexa has a host of jokes and she loves to share them! You can simply just ask her to tell you a joke and she will end up making the entire family laugh.

She’ll play Jeopardy with you, take you on a Yeti hunt, and do a whole lot of other fun games. Seriously… she entertains my kids!

And More!

As you can see, Alexa has SO many things she can do! I mentioned the majority of them, but they are adding new “skills” to her each and every day!

She is getting smarter and will honestly be a huge help in your household! This isn’t just your average speaker, these Amazon Devices are spectacular and can really make a difference in your home.

Amazon device review to find the best Amazon Alexa device

What Are All The Amazon Devices You May Ask?

There are multiple! Here’s an overview… and then I will explain each one in more detail and give recommendations so you know which device is best for you!

Amazon Echo Devices:

Other Devices:

Most of the devices are very similar! The big differences are usually found in speaker size and quality.

Look for the one that you can afford, the one that will look best in your home, and the one that will help you accomplish what your family needs!

View all the Amazon Alexa devices here.

Amazon Echo Dot Review

Amazon Echo Dot

The Echo Dot is the first Amazon device we got and I personally love it! It is also the most affordable and it can do just about anything (scroll up to see how we use ours)!

This speaker on the Echo Dot is decent, but if you want loud and rich sound, I’d purchase a different Echo device (with a better speaker) OR connect this to a Bluetooth speaker. If you do connect it to a Bluetooth, I have found that I need to charge my Bluetooth speaker more frequently since it stays in standby mode (never shutting off).

The key features of this device are:

  • 1.6″ speaker size
  • Streams Music from Amazon Music, Pandora, or Spotify (via WiFi)
  • Line-out with 3.5 mm cable or Bluetooth
  • Free Audio Calls to US, Mexico, and Canada
  • Controls Smart Devices
  • Always has to be plugged into an outlet
  • Optional Add On: Echo Dot Cases (not required… it just adds more texture to your dot!)

Who’s it for?

I would recommend this product for kid’s rooms, your first start out Alexa product, or as a super awesome Christmas gift! Everyone needs an Echo Dot in their lives!

Amazon Echo Review

Amazon Echo

The Echo comes in 5 different colors (Gray, Oak, Charcoal, Sandstone, and Walnut) and is extremely visually appealing and the perfect addition to any room.

This device also has 7 microphones making it easier to hear your voice from anywhere in the room.

The key features of this device are:

  • 2.5″ woofer and 0.6″ tweeter (speaker)
  • Simple set up and compatible with smartphones/ smart devices
  • Streams music from Pandora, Spotify, and Amazon Prime Music
  • Line-out with 3.5 mm cable or Bluetooth
  • Free calls to the US, Mexico, and Canada
  • Controls smart devices

Echo vs Echo Dot

If we were comparing the Echo vs Echo Dot, the Echo has better speakers and a better microphone. To save money, get the Echo for your main living area and then get Echo Dots in your other smaller rooms!

Who’s it for?

I would recommend this one to everyone! It is the perfect addition to any bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, or living room. The colors of this device will blend in perfectly with any home.

Amazon Echo Plus Review

Amazon Echo Plus

The Echo Plus is the device for you if you have multiple Smart Home devices! The Echo Plus allows you to quickly set up every smart home device in your home effortlessly! No need for another hub or app.

Since we are slowly building a smart home, this is the one I will be adding to my home and using in my kitchen/living room area.

The key features of this device are:

  • Includes a built-in smart home hub (the only device with this)
  • 3.0″ neodymium woofer and 0.8″ tweeter (speaker)
  • Streams Music
  • Line-out with 3.5 mm cable or Bluetooth
  • Free audio calls to US, Mexico, and Canada
  • Control smart home devices

Echo vs Echo Plus

The Echo and the Echo Plus look very similar, and they’re the same size as well. The difference is that the Echo Plus has a built-in smart home hub (allowing you to easily connect other smart devices), and it has better speakers.

Who’s it for?

I would recommend this device is to all my wannabe smarthome owners! If you are planning on starting a smart home, or have started one but don’t have a hub yet, this is the device for you!

Amazon Echo Spot Review

Amazon Echo Spot

This is one of the coolest Echo devices in my opinion! The Echo Spot is a mini, more affordable version of the Echo Show. The device comes with the normal Alexa benefits but also gives you a webcam and a screen!

The key features of this device are:

  • 1.4″ Speaker
  • 2.5″ Screen
  • Plays Videos from Youtube and Amazon Prime Video
  • Streams Music
  • Line-out with 3.5 mm cable or Bluetooth
  • Free audio calls to the US, Mexico, and Canada
  • Controls Smart Devices
  • Easy Set Up

Who’s it for?

If you want the benefits of an Echo device with some visuals as well, the Echo Spot is perfect for you. However, if you don’t care for the screen or webcam, the Echo Dot is a better choice.

I do hesitate to get this for my kids’ rooms… mostly because I don’t want them watching whatever they want on YouTube or Amazon Prime video. Since I monitor things like that pretty strictly, I won’t be getting this particular device in my home.

Amazon Echo Show Review

Amazon Echo Show

The Echo Show is the most expensive Echo device, but it also does the most. It’s got a high-quality screen built in, along with a webcam and great speakers.

With this device, you can not only audio call but also video call! Many people use this as a baby monitor and just simply “drop in” to the nursery to check on the baby from wherever they are!

The key features of this device are:

  • Dual 2″ speakers
  • 10.1″ screen
  • 720p video
  • Plays videos from YouTube as well as Amazon Prime Video
  • Streams music from Spotify, Pandora, and Amazon Prime Music
  • Bluetooth
  • Built-in webcam
  • Free voice and video calls to Mexico, Canada, and the US
  • Controls smart home devices

Who’s it for?

I would recommend this device to someone to put in your kitchen or living room. If you are going to spend the extra money on it, place it in an area where it will be heavily used so the price is worth it!

Amazon Echo Look Review

Amazon Echo Look

The Echo Look has a personal webcam that will take selfies of you just by you asking it to do so! It will store all the photos/videos on your phone so you can see exactly how your outfit looks.

PLUS, it works just like every other Amazon Device allowing you to access Alexa! Alexa will get you to the weather, your music, answer your questions, and keep you updated.

The coolest thing about the Echo Look is that if you are struggling with what to wear, you can take 2 of your photos of outfits and send them to Amazon’s Style Check! They will give you expert style advice and let you know which outfit looks best.

On top of all of that, the Echo Look will create a look book so you can remember all your favorite outfits by storing pictures of each one.

The key features of this device are:

  • 5MP Camera
  • 1.6 Watt Speaker
  • 1 Year Warranty
  • Access to Style Check
  • Access to Lookbook (found in Echo Look App)

Who’s it for?

I would recommend this device to all my fashionistas! OR all of you who are wanting to be a fashionista!

Which Amazon Device is Right for You?

These Amazon Echo Devices are awesome, aren’t they? They are sure amazing to have around the house.

In order for you to find the best Amazon Alexa device for your home, here are my final suggestions on which one to buy:

  • Echo Dot: Buy this one as a Christmas gift or as your first Alexa device if you are unsure on whether Alexa would benefit your family!
  • Echo Show: If you are wanting more visual capabilities, this is the one for you! This can be a way to video call, stream YouTube, drop in on other rooms (baby monitor), and would be awesome with those who are hard of hearing!
  • Echo: This would be the go-to Christmas gift for me! These are the most visually appealing (in my opinion), would go in any home, and have the new and improved sound system. Everyone will love this Echo!
  • Echo Plus: Buy this one if you are a smart home user! This is the perfect device to use as your smart device hub!
  • Echo Spot: This one will be the most popular in my opinion! If you are wanting visual aid YET don’t want to spend the money to get the Show, BUY THIS ONE!
  • Echo LookFor all my fashionistas! We aren’t sure when this will be released but keep your eyes out!

Comment below and let us know which one (or ones) you’re going to buy!

Additional Amazon Products

Amazon Fire TV

Amazon Fire TV Stick

If you don’t have one of these, you NEED one! With a Fire TV device, you also get access to tons of different apps on your tv, and you can hook up all your streaming services as well.

Plus, you can use it like you do the Echo devices and ask Alexa questions, stream music, get a view of the nursery, or call an Uber!

There are a few different Fire TV devices available, so check them all out here. These things would make a great gift!

Every Amazon device reviewed

Comments

  • Thank you so much for this post! Perfect timing, with the holidays right around the corner. I have been slowly warming up to the idea of Alexa. I am worried that my kids would drive me crazy yelling things at it constantly. Hopefully the novelty would wear off quickly.

    Thanks for all the great info on all of the devices!

    • No problem Jennifer! I knew everyone was wondering what the difference was so I thought it was time to share! I was worried about my kids driving me crazy too, and they will for about 2 days, and then the hype will wear off and it will be totally worth it!

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