Amazon has introduced the latest generation of the smart speaker Echo Dot (Gen 5) and the Echo Dot with clock. They are supposed to offer an even better sound and are equipped with a temperature sensor, tap control and optimized LED display. The Echo Studio, on the other hand, offers improved audio technology.
Echo Dot (Gen 5) and Echo Dot with Clock
The new Echo Dot (Gen 5) and Echo Dot with Clock mark the most powerful Dot devices to date, relying on the same rounded design as the previous generation. The redesigned audio architecture includes a proprietary wideband driver and speaker with the largest excursion in the Echo Dot series.
Voice clarity and bass in particular are said to benefit. Especially the low tones should be able to be represented twice as strongly as in the predecessor. Echo Dot and Echo Dot with clock feature new sensors that enable further context-supported Alexa experiences.
New routines can be set, for example, to turn off the smart fan as soon as the room reaches a predefined temperature. The new models also feature an accelerometer.
Music playback can be paused or started with a tap on the top. The alarm clock can be turned off in this way and a call can be ended. Echo Dot and Echo Dot with Clock are equipped with the new AZ2 Neural Edge processor, which allows for even more interactions.
The new Echo Dot with clock features an improved 5×21 LED display. In addition to the time, it can display such information as song titles, artist names, the weather, and even mathematical equations.
Echo Dot Kids
With the Echo Dot Kids, there is also a smart speaker specifically for children, which will be offered in October. This is effectively the Echo Dot in a kid-friendly design modeled after an owl or dragon.
It also comes with Amazon Kids features and parental controls, as well as a one-year membership to Amazon Kids+, and a two-year no-sir warranty.
Amazon Kids for Alexa gives you the ability to enable parental controls and family-friendly features on compatible Echo devices at no additional cost. These include time limits, a filter for songs with offensive words, and voice purchases disabled by default. Of course, the Kids model can also answer questions that kids ask Alexa.
Amazon Kids can be easily added to an existing or new Echo device via the Alexa app. Amazon Kids+ for Alexa brings the kid-friendly media library to Alexa. It includes a wide selection of Alexa-specific content such as kid-friendly audio games, audiobooks, or premium skills.
Echo Studio uses improved audio technology
Also improved is the larger Echo Studio smart speaker, which already packs the best sound of any Echo speaker. The new audio technology offers spatial audio processing and frequency range expansion, which is said to make the sound even better.
The proprietary spatial audio processing technology is designed specifically for better stereo sound. It gives music and movie sound immersive width, clarity and presence.
“Like a hi-fi stereo system, voices are more present in the center and instruments distributed in the stereo panorama are better defined at the edges,” promises the manufacturer. These upgrades also complement the Dolby Atmos and Sony 360 Reality Audio formats already supported by Echo Studio.
New smart home features
Over the coming months, there will also be two new smart home features for Alexa and Echo devices. For example, this will allow you to turn off the lights during a defined period of time.
You can now ask Alexa to turn connected smart home devices on or off at a specific time or after a specific duration, up to 24 hours in the future. “Alexa, turn off the lights in 10 minutes” or “Alexa, turn on the coffee maker at 7 a.m.” are two examples.
Another new feature is the ability to use Fire TV on the Echo Show 15, which is already popular as a smart TV in the kitchen. So you can then soon also access Fire TV content and find and watch thousands of movies and series episodes from services like Prime Video, Netflix, Disney+ or ZDF Mediathek.
Prices and availability
The new Echo Dot (Gen 5) is available now in deep sea blue, anthracite and white. It carries an MSRP of 59.99 euros. The new Echo Dot with Clock will be available in gray blue and white at an MSRP of 69.99 euros.
The new Echo Dot Kids is available for pre-order now for 69.99 euros. All new Echo Dot variants are scheduled to begin shipping on October 20, 2022. Echo Studio is available for 199.99 euros in white or anthracite, but is currently on sale for 149.99 euros.