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Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Generation)

Voice-activated virtual assistant (White)

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Overview

Our take on the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Generation)

The latest generation of the Amazon Echo Dot sports a brand new look, while keeping all the great features of previous Echo Dots. Of course, [y]ou can still use voice commands to order take-out or call up a favorite playlist. Ask for the weather (or the news) and more. The Echo Dot features a seven-microphone array with far-field voice recognition to ensure your commands are heard clearly.

“Alexa, what's the weather?”

Amazon Echo Dot

The Echo Dot is compatible with an ever-expanding number of products and services.

The latest generation of the Amazon Echo Dot sports a brand new look, while keeping all the great features of previous Echo Dots. Of course, [y]ou can still use voice commands to order take-out or call up a favorite playlist. Ask for the weather (or the news) and more. The Echo Dot features a seven-microphone array with far-field voice recognition to ensure your commands are heard clearly.

Hands-free control for your home

The new Echo Dot can give you voice control of smart lights, switches, and thermostats from companies like WemoPhilips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, and more. The Alexa virtual assistant app can answer questions, read audiobooks to you, find a recipe, tell you who won last night's game and more. All activated by the sound of your voice.

The Alexa service continually adds new features and products it's compatible with. Amazon calls these features "skills," which can be downloaded from their website. 

Echo Dot and sound

The Echo Dot can also give you voice control over compatible speakers and components. Use the Echo Dot together with a Sonos Play:1, for example, and you have voice command for your entire Sonos wireless system. There are also Alexa-compatible home theater receivers and powered speakers you can use with the Echo Dot.

Product Highlights:

  • connects to your home Wi-Fi® network
  • built-in Bluetooth lets you stream directly from compatible devices
  • array of 7 built-in far-field microphones in each device to pick up voice commands
  • speaker allows Alexa to audibly respond to requests
  • hands-free control of popular music streaming services and smart home devices
  • microphone mute button lets you choose when Alexa is listening
  • top-mounted volume control buttons
  • built-in Alexa App is compatible with Fire OS, Android, and iOS devices and also accessible via your web browser
  • minijack output for connecting your own speakers or headphones
  • 3-15/16" diameter x 1-11/16" high
  • weight: 10.6 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Voice-activated smart speaker
  • AC power adapter (attached 5.5' DC cord)
  • Quick Start Guide
  • "Things to Try" card

Excellent product - real fun use. Has great speakers (bass) and volume for the size.

Mujib, Mcmurray, PA

Reviews

Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Generation) Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(1 Review)

Great product

Mujib from Mcmurray, PA on 12/6/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Excellent product - real fun use. Has great speakers (bass) and volume for the size.

Pros: Excellent speakers -loud enough Good bass for the size Good response

Cons: Nothing yet

Details

Hands-on research

Product Research

Features

Voice-Activated Smart Speaker: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) is a hands-free, voice-controlled device with a small built-in speaker. It can also connect to your speakers or headphones over Bluetooth or through a 3.5mm audio cable to deliver stereo sound to the speakers you choose. The Echo Dot (3rd gen) connects to the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, news, sports scores, weather, and more. You can call almost anyone and control compatible smart home devices with your voice.

  • Voice Recognition w/ Echo Spatial Perception: On the top of the Echo Dot (3rd gen) is an array of four microphones that use beam-forming technology and enhanced noise cancellation. With far-field voice recognition, the Echo Dot (3rd gen) can hear you ask a question from any direction - even while playing music. When you want to use Echo Dot (3rd gen), just say the wake word "Alexa" and the Dot (3rd gen) responds instantly. If you have more than one Echo or Echo Dot (3rd gen), Alexa responds intelligently from the Echo you're closest to with ESP (Echo Spatial Perception).
    • You can turn the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen)'s microphone off by pushing the microphone on/off button on the top of the device. When the microphone on/off button turns red, the microphone is off. The device will not respond to the wake word, nor respond to the action button, until you reactivate the microphone by pushing the microphone on/off button again.
    •  You cannot connect multiple Alexa devices to each other and play the same requested audio at the same time.
  • Audio Playback: The Echo Dot (3rd gen) features a built-in speaker for voice feedback when not connected to external speakers. A 3.5mm stereo audio output allows you to connect the Dot (3rd gen) to your AV receiver or powered speakers. Make sure your amplified device is powered on. Audio cable is sold separately.
    • Some AV receivers and powered speakers will go into Standby mode when they have not received an audio signal for a specific amount of time. In this case, the Echo Dot (3rd gen) cannot turn on these amplified devices through voice activation. You will have to physically turn back on the AV receiver or powered speaker through its front- or top-panel control, remote control, or compatible app before streaming audio from the Dot (3rd gen) to the amplified device.
  • Bluetooth Audio Streaming: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) is also Bluetooth-enabled (A2DP/AVRCP) and acts as a Bluetooth receiver, transmitter, or controller. Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) support provides audio streaming from your mobile device to the Echo Dot (3rd gen), or from the Dot (3rd gen) to a Bluetooth speaker or headphone. Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) offers voice control of connected mobile devices - like your smartphone or tablet.
    • Hands-free voice control is not supported for Mac OS X devices. Hands-free phone communication (HFP) is not supported. Bluetooth audio streaming cannot be multiroom distributed.

Built-In WiFi (MIMO): The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) comes ready to connect to your home's WiFi network. It features dual-band (2.4GHz/5GHz), dual-antenna MIMO WiFi (802.11a/b/g/n/ac) for faster streaming and fewer dropped connections than standard WiFi. The Echo Dot (3rd gen) requires the Alexa App for WiFi setup and configuration. It does not support connecting to ad-hoc (or peer-to-peer) WiFi.

Alexa App: With the free Alexa App on Apple iOS 9.0+, Android OS 4.4+, Fire OS, and desktop browsers, you can easily setup (including WiFi network) and manage the Echo Dot (3rd gen) voice-activated powered speaker. The free Amazon Alexa App is a companion to your Alexa device for setup, remote control, and enhanced features. Interactions with Alexa are automatically mirrored visually on your Amazon Alexa App, providing more information as you want it. The Amazon Alexa App lets you easily manage your alarms, music, shopping lists, and more.

  • Music Apps w/ Multi-Room: Use the Alexa App to connect music services you already use like Spotify, Pandora, and iHeart Radio. The new Multi-Room Music section allows you to designate a group for devices on the same WiFi network. Once created, group names can be used to control music playback.
  • Smart Home w/ Routines: Setup your smart home devices from WeMo, Philips Hue, SmartThings, Insteon, Nest, and more. You'll be able to view the state and control your smart lights, locks, and thermostats. When you are on-the go, you can use the app to quickly check the status of your lock or turn off your lights. The new Routines section allows you to automate a series of Smart Home actions with one custom command.
  • Calls & Messaging: With the Alexa App, you can call and message Amazon Echo device owners and anyone else with the Alexa App on their phones. When you're away from home, use the app to make a quick call or send a message to your family's Echo. Use Drop In to instantly connect with your devices for a call. For example, you can drop in to let the family know it's time for dinner or check in on the baby's nursery.
  • Other Features: See what books are available to read from your Kindle & Audible libraries, plus enjoy Podcasts. View shopping, to-do lists, and Google Calendar while on the go. Control your timers and set custom tones for your alarms, and much more. The Alexa App is also where you discover and enable third-party skills.

Skills: Skills are voice-driven capabilities that enhance the functionality of the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) with Alexa - Alex has more than 50,000 skills and counting. You can search for and enable skills in the Alexa app or from the Alexa Skills store on the website. You can also see ratings and reviews to learn what other customers are saying about the thousands of skills available in the Alexa App. To use an Alexa skill, first enable the skill, and then make your request based on the example phrases shown in the app. If you know the exact name of the skill you want, you can say, "Enable [skill name] skill." Some skills may require you to link to an existing account and a separate subscription in order to use the skill. You can even create your own personal skills and custom responses with Alexa Skill Blueprints - just say "Alexa, help me get started with skills".

Note: At this time, you cannot customize which content is available on specific Alexa devices. For example, music, skills, shopping lists are available on all Alexa devices registered to the same account as the content.

Alexa Voice Service: When you want to use the Echo Dot (3rd gen), simply say the wake word, "Alexa," and the Dot (3rd gen) lights up and streams audio to the cloud, where the Alexa Voice Service is leveraged to recognize and respond to your request instantly. Once you say "Alexa", the audio stream includes a fraction of a second of audio before the wake word, and closes once your question or request has been processed. Alexa (the brain behind Dot (3rd gen)) is built in the cloud, so it is always getting smarter. The more you use the Dot (3rd gen), the more it adapts to your speech patterns, vocabulary, and personal preferences.

  • Voice Profile: Voice Profiles give you the ability to teach Alexa your voice. Now when you then interact with your compatible devices, Alexa creates a personalized experience for you and each user in your home who creates a Voice Profile.
  • Wake Word: When the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) detects the "Alexa" wake word, the light ring around the top of Echo Dot (3rd gen) turns blue to indicate that the Dot (3rd gen) is streaming audio to the Cloud. If you'd like, you can give each Alexa device (Echo or Echo Dot (3rd gen)) a distinct name.
  • Wake-Up Sound: You can also enable a "wake-up sound", a short audible tone that plays after the wake word "Alexa" is recognized to indicate that the device is streaming audio.
  • End-Of-Request Sound: You can also enable an "end-of-request sound" that will play a short audible tone at the end of your request, to indicate that the connection has closed and the device is no longer streaming audio.
Note: Alexa is developed to get better over time. Alexa uses your voice recordings and other information, including from third-party services, to answer your questions, fulfill your requests, and improve your experience and our services. When you set up the Echo or link third-party services with Alexa, Alexa begins processing some information, such as your music playlists. You can also help Alexa improve its voice services by providing feedback within History or by using Voice Training in the Alexa App.

Alexa Calling & Messaging: Now you can quickly call and send/receive voice messages for your family and friends via Alexa-Call just by using your voice. You can send and receive Alexa messages, as well as place and receive Alexa calls, between Echo, Echo Dot Echo Plus, Echo Spot and Echo Show, as well as the Alexa App. You can place outbound calls to most phone numbers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico using the Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Spot, Echo Show and Echo Plus.

  • Calling: You can use supported Echo devices and the Alexa App to call another person who has registered for Alexa Calling & Messaging, or place an outbound call to most phone numbers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico for free. When you receive Alexa calls on your supported Echo devices, Alexa will tell you that you have an incoming call and identify the caller. You also will see a rotating green light ring on Echo, Echo Plus and Echo Dot (3rd gen) devices, and an incoming call screen on Echo Show and Echo Spot. You can say "Alexa, answer" to pick up the call. Either person can end the call by saying "Alexa, hang up." When you receive a call, you also will receive a notification on your mobile phone and will see an incoming call screen in the Alexa App that lets you answer the call.
  • Messaging: You can use supported Echo devices and the Alexa App to send voice and text messages to another person who has registered for Alexa Calling & Messaging. Messages are processed in the Cloud to convert voice messages to text, and vice versa. When you receive a message on a supported Echo device, you will hear an audio tone and see a visual notification. You will be able to retrieve the message on your supported Echo devices by saying "Alexa, play my messages." When you receive a message, you also will receive a notification on your mobile phone, and you will be able to view and play the message in the Alexa App. Alexa messaging does not support sending or receiving text messages to or from phone numbers.
  • Drop-In: The optional Drop In feature will let you easily connect with your closest friends and family that have supported Echo devices. When someone drops in on your supported Echo device, you will hear an audio tone and see a visual indicator that someone is dropping in on you. The contact on the other side of the Drop In will automatically hear audio through your device.
Notes:
  • Alexa Calling & Messaging supports receiving Alexa calls only; it does not support inbound calls from phone numbers.
  • You cannot call 911 and other emergency services using Alexa.

Music Listening: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) provides access to select online music services and the ability to setup a multiroom audio system with Amazon Music using multiple Alexa enabled devices.

  • Music Apps: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) provides hands-free voice control for Amazon Music, Pandora, TuneIn, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, and Spotify Connect. You can also upload your personal music collection from iTunes, Google Play Music, and more to your music library on Amazon and then stream your music through your Alexa device. Simply ask for your favorite artist or song, or request a specific genre or mood. You can also search for music by lyrics, when a song or album was released, or let Alexa pick the music for you. In addition, you can us the Echo Dot (3rd gen) and Alexa to listen to Audible and Podcasts.
  • Multiroom Music: Multiroom Music allows you to play and control music from Amazon, Amazon Unlimited, Amazon Prime, and some other 3rd-pary music providers across multiple, compatible Echo devices at the same time. You can tell Alexa to play music across your compatible Echo devices on the same WiFi network. Tell Alexa to play jazz in the kitchen, top pop in the family room, or play the same song throughout your whole home. To stream different music on multiple devices or on more than one Multiroom Music group at the same time, you must have an Amazon Music Unlimited Family plan.
Note: Subscriptions and fees will apply for online music services.

Home Entertainment Control: Amazon Alexa now offers home entertainment skills for select multiroom audio systems - including  Sonos, DTS Play-Fi, HEOS, Bose SoundTouch, & Yamaha MusicCast (all sold separately); as well as Sony Android TVs and LG AI ThinQ TVs (sold separately). You'll be able to control key functions and features by simply using voice commands.

Smart Home: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) works with devices such as lights, switches, thermostats, and more from WeMo, Philips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, Insteon and more. Ask Alexa to switch on a lamp, turn on the fan, dim the lights, or increase the temperature. Some products work directly with Alexa and other smart home ecosystems require a compatible hub.

  • Lighting: With the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) and Alexa, you can control lighting products using your voice, smartphone, or tablet.
  • Outlets: With the Echo Dot (3rd gen), Alexa, and smart outlets, you can control electronics and appliances using your voice, smartphone, or tablet.
  • Thermostats: With the Dot (3rd gen), Alexa, and compatible thermostats, you can control the temperature of your home using your voice, smartphone, or tablet.
  • Door Locks: With the Dot (3rd gen) and Alexa you can control compatible door locks using your voice, smartphone, or tablet.

IFTTT: The Dot (3rd gen) with Alexa supports IFTTT, or "IF This, Then That," a third-party service that automates how your devices, apps, and websites work with each other through rules (or "Applets"). After you activate an Applet through the IFFTT website, Alexa can then trigger that IFTTT Applet when you interact with the Echo Dot (3rd gen).

Note: Currently, the Echo Dot (3rd gen) and Alexa can't be the action in an Applet. For example, you can't allow Alexa to notify you of new tweets on your Twitter account.

Amazon Prime Shopping: Amazon Prime members can ask the Echo Dot (3rd gen) through "Alexa" to order eligible products ordered before, many Prime products and digital music tracks and albums. Your default payment and shipping settings will be used to place your order. You can require a speakable confirmation code, turn purchasing off, and see product and order details in your Alexa App. Just like orders placed through Amazon.com, orders placed through Alexa are subject to Amazon's Conditions of Use & Privacy Notice.

News/Information & Calendars/Reminders: The Amazon Dot (3rd gen) with Alexa can help you stay connected to the news that matters most to you - like world & local news, traffic, weather, sports, and movie times. You can also use Alex to setup your calendars and reminders.

  • Flash Briefing: Flash Briefing lets you put together a personalized lineup of updates from news sources like NPR, CNN, Fox News, and CNET. If you've set up a voice profile, Alexa recognizes your voice and can catch you up on the latest without repeating old news.
  • Traffic & Weather: Alexa can help you get ready for your day. Set your commute start and stop point, and Alexa can tell you how long your commute will take. Or ask Alexa how the weather's looking.
  • Sports & Movies: Get scores and schedules for the major football, basketball, baseball, hockey, and soccer leagues or set up a personalized Sports Update to keep tabs on your favorite teams. Alexa can even tell you movie show-times at theaters near you.
  • Calendars & Reminders: Use your voice and Alexa to set timers, add items to lists, and create calendar events and reminders.

Questions/Answers + Fun/Games: The Dot (3rd gen) with Alexa taps into Yelp to provide you with info on local restaurants, shops, and other businesses. It also makes a great calculator and dictionary. You can even get fast facts on all type of topics from Wikipedia.  Alexa also offers funny jokes and fun games for the family.

FreeTime For Kids: FreeTime on Alexa is an Alexa experience just for kids, available on the Echo, Echo Plus, Echo Dot, and Echo Dot Kids Edition. When you use FreeTime on Alexa, Alexa will play music, answer questions, read stories, tell jokes, and more with younger ears in mind. Certain Alexa features may differ when FreeTime on Alexa is enabled. For example, voice purchasing from Amazon is turned off and Alexa Calling and Messaging, if enabled, is limited to only within the household or with contacts you select. 

AC Power Adapter: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) includes an AC power adapter that will need to be plugged into an AC power outlet or surge protector (sold separately).

Note: The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) is not battery powered.

Automatic Updates: Because the Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen) is always connected to the internet, updates are delivered automatically.

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