Amazon’s Echo event: All the new Alexa gadgets heading for your home


The Echo smart speakers have all been given an upgrade (Amazon)

Around September time all the tech companies start getting very excited about the new gadgets they’ve been cooking up.

Apple has been showing off a new Apple Watch while Google unveiled the latest Pixel phone.

But perhaps the most epic of September announcements game from retail giant Amazon and it’s subsidiary Ring. Not content with just one gadget, Amazon served up a smorgasboard of new tech.

Flying drones, TV sticks, security cameras, smart speakers and a brand new gaming service; we’ve rounded up all the launches Amazon had to offer.

Home security drone!

How about having one of these flying around your home? (Amazon)

We’ll level with you. One of the coolest announcements from Amazon’s big reveal event last week came from its smart security subsidiary, Ring, which unveiled a rather bizarre home surveillance drone. Yes, you read that correctly. Home. Security. Drone.

Called the Always Home Cam, it’s an adorable little camera-toting drone that patrols your entire house while you’re away, saving you the hassle of placing a camera in every room.

It’ll automatically land back in its charging dock when it needs a nap too, assuming it’s not intercepted by a renegade kitty.

You can check in on the drone footage from your phone (Amazon)

Ring also announced its first foray into a new line of security cameras for cars, along with end-to-end encryption for video footage, rolling out to users by the end of this year.

When hooked up to the Ring app, the new Car Cam, Car Alarm and Car Connect systems integrate into the Ring app to alert owners and provide them with alerts for  attempted break-ins.

Amped-up Echos

The Echo smart speakers have a new spherical shape (Amazon)

Smart speaker fans with a penchant for spheres will be pleased to hear that all of Amazon’s new Echo devices have a new futuristic orb-like demeanour and will be launching October 22.

The new flagship Echo (£89.99) packs in Zigbee support for controlling your smart devices, along with Dolby-powered sound, while the smaller Echo Dot (£49.99) and Echo Dot with clock (£59.99, main image above) offer up more affordable Alexa smarts in a more compact size.

There’s also a Kids Edition complete with either a cute panda or tiger design, which are absolutely adorable and will no-doubt appeal to big kids too. Sadly, these yet to be confirmed as launching in the UK.

The whole range will also launch with a low power mode, which means that each device will be more efficient while using less power. The good news for those not quite ready to update is that some older Echo devices will also benefit from this mode thanks to a future software update.

Screens and TVs

The Echo Show now pivots to follow you around the room (Amazon)

Amazon also showed off the new Echo Show 10 (£239.99), which now has a display attached to a motorised base, which automatically moves to face you as you move around the room, like your own personalised paparazzi. Useful? Probably. Creepy? Definitely.

Moving to bigger screens, we have  the Fire TV Stick  and TV Stick Lite, priced at £39.99 and £29.99 respectively. Packing more power than ever, they offer faster 1080p streaming at 60fps, while the Fire TV Stick also supports Dolby Atmos sound and the ability to control your AV equipment with your voicebox.

Smarter Alexa

Alexa is getting smarter every year (Credits: Getty Images)

If you sometimes find yourself getting frustrated with Alexa’s responses, particularly with older Echo devices, you’ll be pleased to hear that Amazon’s gifted its new range of Echos with a new AZ1 Neural Edge processor.

Now Alexa can respond faster to commands and questions that, coupled with new machine-learning tech, means that she can also understand multiple people at once, while only asking clarifying questions if needed. Smart, huh?





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