Little sis sent me an Amazon voucher for my recent birthday.  Only one thing to spend it on – the Amazon Dot.  SWMBO reckons it’s pointless, I love it.If you don’t know what it is, it’s Amazon’s take on AI, and a move to a voice controlled home.  Amazon says the following:

  • Amazon Echo Dot is a hands-free, voice-controlled device that uses Alexa to play music, control smart home devices, provide information, read the news, set alarms and more
  • Connects to speakers or headphones through Bluetooth or 3.5 mm stereo cable to play music from Amazon Music, Spotify and TuneIn
  • Controls lights, switches, thermostats and more with compatible connected devices from WeMo, Philips Hue, Hive, Netatmo, Nest, tado° and others
  • Hears you from across the room with 7 microphones for far-field hands-free voice control, even in noisy environments or while playing music
  • Includes a built-in speaker so it can work on its own as a smart alarm clock in the bedroom, an assistant in the kitchen, or anywhere you might want a voice-controlled device
  • Always getting smarter – Alexa updates through the cloud automatically and is continually learning, adding new features and skills

It’s a tiny thing, about an inch deep, and 4inches across.  Setup was easy, within 2 minutes it was connected to my wireless network and telling us the weather, jokes, the meaning of life, and all sorts of other stuff.  The ‘easter eggs’ are a giggle:

So far it’s controlling the heating, and can update me on my commute.  I need to tinker with rail timetables, and get a bluetooth adaptor so I can plug it into the hifi to stream music on command.  Then there is the new Harmony remote I need so the Dot can control the TV, hifi, AmazonTV etc.


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