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Just in time for you to start thinking about Christmas (and Black Friday), Amazon has announced a whole new range of Echo devices (and a slight redesign to the standard Echo).
On the budget end of the scale there is the Echo Flex, which only costs £24.99. It plugs into any socket in the house and does all the simple Alexa things like checking things online and controlling compatible devices. You can also use it to charge a phone while using just the one plug. It arrives November 14.
There’s also the classic Echo Dot with clock. It’s like the Echo Dot, but with a clock. Okay, the LED display can do a bit more than that. It can tell you the temperature and set an alarm or a timer. It’s still £59.99.
If you like your Alexa to have a bit more going on visually, there’s the Echo Show 8. Similar to the Show 5 which came out earlier this year, this one has an 8-inch screen. You can ask it to play videos, make video calls and show you food recipes. Imagine a tablet with a massive speaker on the back. It costs £119.99.
On the premium end is the Echo Studio, a beefier device with five directional speakers built in. Amazon claims it is the first smart speaker to support 360 audio, and it can sense the acoustics in the environment and alter the sound based on where it is. You can even connect it to compatible TVs to really provide some surround sound. The Studio costs £189.99, coming November 7.
That’s not all. Amazon has also announced Echo Buds, which are wireless earbuds with all the noise-cancelling features you’d expect. It allows you to use Alexa hands-free and on the go, and even works with Siri and Google Assistant. The buds with a charging dock cost £119.99, coming soon.
And that’s still not all. Alexa itself is getting expanded with some new features. Routines will allow you to do things like set an alarm for a specific time each day in one go, and you can get Alexa to read back requests and explain its responses.
Privacy fans will also get to set auto-delete options for their voice recordings. These features will be rolling out in the next couple of weeks.
Remember, you have the option of spreading the cost of these products over five months at no extra cost.