Amazon today began offering devices in its Echo smart speaker range at discounted prices for the first time in the products' short history, as part of its Black Friday Deals Week.
For those unfamiliar with the devices, the connected speakers' array of microphones lets users query voice-based assistant Alexa, who can be asked to do things like play music, read the news, use apps, check the weather, turn on the lights, set timers, and more.
The full-size Echo speaker is being offered at $140 (usually $180), while the second-generation Echo Dot – a smaller variant with the same features – has had $10 lopped off the price and is going for $40.
Elsewhere, Amazon has slashed $40 off its Alexa-enabled portable Bluetooth speaker, now selling for $90 instead of $130.
Apple is also offering its own Black Friday deals this year. For all the discounts on Apple products offered on Amazon, Apple, and elsewhere, be sure to check out the MacRumors Black Friday Holiday Roundup, continually updated throughout the week.
MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon and may sometimes get paid if you click one of the above links and purchase a product or service.
Top Rated Comments
[doublepost=1479988974][/doublepost] I was in the same place as you, but I use this way more than Siri. Its more responsive and gets it right first time more of the time. Plus everyone in the house can use it, there is no voice print.
despite my Lutron Caseta smart home lighting system working with Apple HomeKit, the "Hey Siri" call function is hit or miss at best and requires me to remove the phone from my pocket to work or have it laying out. its a massive pain in the ass and almost makes it worse than just getting up and walking over to hit a switch.
i purchased 3 echo dot's for $150 total that are ALWAYS listening and cover 75% of the main and upper floor of my house. anytime i am in those 75% of areas where a echo can hear me I can literally just speak out loud at any given time "Alexa, dim my bedroom lights to 50%" or "Alexa, turn on the kitchen island lights" or "Alexa, turn off all of the downstairs lights" and it gets it 100% perfect all the time. no button press. no "hey siri" that works 50% of the time and requires a slight pause before saying a command. for me that $150 made my far more expensive lighting system WORK.
believe me i want apple to get there, the only reason i haven't bought MORE echo's is because i'm trying not to sink too much money into echo if i end up going to a similar apple solution in 2017 but for now it KILLS SIRI to actually do things people want it to do and not just demonstrate you can ask 12 ways to get it to say the weather.
We've covered news about Amazon products in the past, so we thought some readers might appreciate the heads-up. :)