Australian T3 - - HOME - Ama­zon Echo

Dis­cover Alexa – and how this pow­er­ful voice as­sis­tant can con­trol your con­nected home

We show you how to set up a key piece of con­nected home tech. Get ready for...

Un­til you try Ama­zon Echo, it’s dif­fi­cult to fathom just how good this de­vice is. Sit­ting dis­creetly on your ta­ble or work­top, it of­fers a whole new world of voice con­trol, en­abling you not only to ask it to play your favourite mu­sic (it in­te­grates with Spo­tify, TuneIn and Prime mu­sic among many more) but also set timers, get con­ver­sions on weights and mea­sure­ments and much, much more.

What’s truly ex­cit­ing about Ama­zon Echo is its abil­ity to con­trol pretty much every main­stream smart home de­vice out there. Imag­ine be­ing able to sim­ply ask for your lights to come on, or your heat­ing to turn up, or your ket­tle to boil. Well, with Ama­zon Echo and its voice ser­vice, Alexa, that’s ex­actly what you can do. And it’s sim­ple to set up.

Firstly, you need to down­load the Ama­zon Alexa app, then sign in with your Ama­zon ac­count (or reg­is­ter for one if you’re not al­ready a mem­ber). Then it’s sim­ply a mat­ter of fol­low­ing the app’s in­struc­tions to add a new de­vice. There are three Ama­zon Alexa prod­ucts out there – the Echo, the Dot and the Tap. The for­mer two are the most in­ter­est­ing by far and fea­ture full voice con­trol by just say­ing ‘Alexa…’. The lat­ter is a por­ta­ble Blue­tooth speaker that re­quires you to press a but­ton to ac­ti­vate voice con­trol.

The Echo (US$179.99, $240.40) and Echo Dot (US$49.99, $66.80) work the same way, the dif­fer­ence be­ing the Echo is an ex­cel­lent speaker – the Dot has a speaker, but you can con­nect it to a 3.5mm jack or a Blue­tooth speaker for bet­ter sound. With Ama­zon com­ing to Aus­tralian shores soon, we thought we’d get you ready and get them set up early...

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