There are so many to choose from that it's overwhelming.
Best Amazon Alexa Devices
Alexa lovers everywhere, pay attention. Out of the many options, we’ve picked the three best Amazon Alexa devices for your home (and car).
Keep reading to get the skinny on which devices we picked and why we think they’re the best Alexa devices.
- : Best smart home hub
- : Most versatile
- : Best mobile option
Amazon.com List Prices (as of 09/27/2023 2:45 MST) Full disclaimer
Echo Dot: Best smart home hub
The simple Echo speaker still holds up in the smart hub market. Of the basic Echos, the Echo Dot is our favorite for home automation.
What we like
What’s not to like about the Amazon Echo Dot? It’s small, it’s cute, and it does everything a full-sized Echo does. That means that it can do the following, among other things:
- Turn the smart lights on and off
- Lock and unlock the front door smart lock
- Change the smart thermostat temperature
- Change the smart TV channel
- Call your mom
- Play music
- Play games
- Tell jokes
- Tell riddles
- Tell stories
- Read recipes
- Order ingredients
- Remind you of things
- Wake you up with alarms
- Alert you with timers
As if the regular Echo Dot isn’t enough, you can also get upgraded versions.
There’s the Echo Dot with Clock, which sounds gimmicky at first. After all, it’s not that hard to ask Alexa for the time. But take it from us: it’s seriously nice to have that digital display. If you jerk awake in the middle of the night, disoriented, the time’s automatically displayed on your nightstand.
There’s also the Echo Dot Kids Edition. You’ll pay a premium for this Echo’s built-in parental controls. But for the concerned parent, it could be worth it for the restricted access, time limits, and transparent activity tracking. And it’s a great way for kids to access the content on Amazon Kids+.
What we don't like
We thought of one thing we don’t like. The Echo Dot is smaller than other Echo versions, so it lacks hard-hitting bass capabilities. The sound isn’t bad, but it’s not good enough for some audiophiles, who may find their Amazon Music playlists lacking when heard through a Dot.
Echo Show 10: Most versatile
With the Echo Show 10 smart speaker, Alexa can help you watch Amazon Prime Video, read recipes, video call friends, and visit some websites.
What we like
Those of us used to devices with screens may feel slightly disconnected from the screenless Echos. Plus, there are things you just can’t do without a visual display.
Enter the Amazon Echo Show. It has all the Echo Dot’s features and even more. The screen lets you video chat with friends and family, watch movies and TV shows, read recipes instead of having them read to you, browse the internet, and pore over new colors for your LIFX bulbs. You can even look at your security camera’s feeds.
We’ve included a few versions of the Echo Show in the table. The Echo Show 10 is the latest and greatest, but you can also get some of the same functionality with a Show 8 or Show 5. It depends on how badly you want the most up-to-date version.
With Echo Shows, the newest and best models aren’t necessarily the most expensive. We suggest comparing model prices before buying if you have a specific budget.
The Echo Show 10 has a bigger screen than the other two models, so if you want a lot of real estate, that’s the way to go.
What we don't like
Compared to the price tag of the Echo Show 8 or Echo Show 5, the Echo Show 10 is quite a bit more expensive. It comes with an HD smart screen and a few other notable features, but it's definitely not your cheapest option.
What we like
Meet the only Echo made for the inside of a car, the Echo Auto. This little thing is designed specifically for commutes and road trips. It has eight microphones so Alexa can hear you over the engine, and its Bluetooth audio plays through your car’s speaker system.
With your Echo Auto along for the ride, you can multitask while you drive. You can make calls, check the news/weather/traffic, play music, and get dinner recommendations while still keeping your eyes on the road.
What we don't like
The Echo Auto won’t work with all cars or even phones. Check before you buy so you don’t end up with a product you can’t use.
It also has limited functions compared to other Echos. It can’t be used for home automation, which is fine, but it’s still as much as the full-featured Echo Dot. We guess you’re paying a novelty tax for the convenience of putting it in your car.
Other products we like
Let's look at a couple of other Amazon Alexa products we love.
Amazon Fire TV Cube
Alexa-controlled TV? Yes, please. This little cube can access multiple streaming services and act as a smart home hub.
Our take on the Fire TV Cube
A Fire TV Cube brings you 4K Ultra HD, and it’s voice-controlled. You can ask Alexa to change the channel or turn off the lights—all without lifting a finger.
If you enjoy watching television, the Fire TV Cube is an easy way to incorporate Alexa into your TV room. Its price is on par with the Echo Show, and you can even get it bundled with a Food Network Kitchen subscription. Bon appétit!
Amazon Echo Flex
Not everyone wants to drop $50+ on an Echo. If you’re one of those people, you could try getting an Echo Flex. It usually runs at about half the price of a Dot.
The Echo Flex was discontinued, but you can still purchase this product through independent sellers on Amazon.
Our take on the Echo Flex
The Flex is essentially a small, square Echo that plugs into a standard electrical outlet. It works as a smart home hub and connects with other Echo models for drop-in calls or announcements. It also has some cool Flex-only features, like a USB port. You can use the port to charge your phone or watch or to plug in an accessory.
The Echo Loop (not to be confused with the Echo Look, selfie camera extraordinaire) is essentially a ring with Echo built in. In some contexts, it’s useless, but it can be a valuable tool in the right situation.
Our take on the Echo Loop
One of our video reviewers, Steve, swears by the Echo Loop. He likes that you can use it to quietly talk to Alexa anywhere in your house.
Our other reviewers also think the Echo Loop is an amusing concept, and it can come in handy when you aren’t near one of your stationary Echos. But it’s really only useful in your home. It won’t work when it’s not Wi-Fi connected, so you can’t travel with it.
Essentially, if you’re looking for a pocket-sized Echo, this won’t work. But if you don’t want to buy a large Echo for every room in your house yet still want unlimited access, a Loop is a perfect fit.
Just know that you have to request an Amazon invitation to try the product since it's not fully on the market.
Recap: Which Amazon Alexa device is best?
Let’s walk through our top Alexa picks once more.
Echo Dot: Best smart home hub—If you mostly want to manage your smart home, go with the Echo Dot. You’ll get full voice control over your system in a tiny, round package.
Echo Show 10: Most versatile—Whether you want to video call, watch something, find a new recipe, or just unlock the door, Echo Show 10 is here for you. But you’ll have to shell out a bit of extra money for these features.
Echo Auto: Best mobile option—Technically your only mobile option, but it’s the perfect way to get on the road with Alexa. Just make sure your car and phone are compatible with the Auto.
Amazon devices FAQ
You start by plugging in your device and downloading the Alexa app. Then you follow the app instructions for a successful installation.
Amazon’s Fire TV devices have similar functions. However, the Fire TV Cube is more of an Echo device with streaming capabilities. You can use it to control your smart home, not just your TV. That isn’t true of the Stick.
For that reason, we would recommend the Cube over the Stick in most circumstances.
Yes, you can! With the Alexa app, you can create a Multi-Room Music group and enjoy your tunes wherever you have an Alexa device.
Set up Multi-Room Music groups by following these three steps:
- Open the Alexa app and choose Devices.
- Click Plus before selecting Combine Speakers.
- Select Multi-Room Music
And any new Alexa devices can easily be added to your group of devices.
Pro tip: If you already have multiple Alexa devices connected, Alexa will automatically create a Multi-Room Music group called "Everywhere." You can edit this group by navigating to Speaker Groups in Devices.
Just know that with most Alexa devices, you won’t get Dolby Atmos-quality sound.
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