The best Amazon Alexa devices for 2020 – CNET

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<pre><pre>The top 10 Amazon Alexa devices for 2020 - CNET

Voice assistants are anything but trivial these days, but at Amazon you can't just ask for weather information and music. compatible Amazon Echo smart speakers and displays Open up a range of options – from checking who's at your door to turning on the lights when you enter a room.

Amazon launched its first Amazon Echo speaker in 2014. Since then, voice commands have been playing an increasingly important role when interacting with our smart home devices. Google Assistant and Siri jumped on board with their own intelligent speakers and voice control, but the Alexa voice assistant was the first to advocate voice integration in the smart home.

So what are the best Alexa enabled smart home devices today? Let’s take a look.

Best Google Assistant devices: What are our favorite Google Assistant enabled gadgets?

Best HomeKit devices: Which smart home products go well with Siri?

The best Alexa devices

Tyler Lizenby / CNET

Amazon has added an LED watch to its third generation smart speaker to develop the Echo Dot with Clock. For this price, it's our favorite speaker. This 2019 third generation dot not only offers impressive sound for its modest profile, but also makes helpful information such as time, timer and outside temperature easily visible.

Although there is a wide range of Alexa devices to choose from, the Echo Dot with clock impresses with its impressive performance, its small footprint and its practicality. At just $ 60, this clever pint-sized speaker is an excellent entry into the world of Alexa voice control.

Read the Amazon Echo Dot with Clock review.

Tyler Lizenby / CNET

Though the price is $ 500, the 2-pack Arlo Pro 3 is a great surveillance camera with local storage and high quality 2K streaming. With its fast alarms and numerous functions such as a built-in siren, color night view and 12x zoom, the Arlo Pro 3 is our most popular high-end smart camera.

You can also view your camera stream on Echo Smart Displays, though Arlo's previous 7-day option for free event-based cloud storage is no longer available. You'll need to sign up for monthly plans (from $ 3 a month) to store footage in the cloud.

Read the Arlo Pro 3 review.

Lauren Routt / CNET

Ring & # 39; s $ 199 Peephole Cam is a unique product for the Amazon company. The Peephole Cam is not mounted on a door frame or anywhere else next to the door, but replaces a conventional peephole.

This means that this product is perfect for people who live in homes who want an intelligent doorbell but don't want to deal with a hard-wired device – or otherwise want to mess up a door frame for installation. None of Ring's main competitors offers such a seamless solution for residents, making this doorbell, among other devices available today, particularly innovative.

Not only that, but the Peephole Cam has the simplest installation of all doorbells tested so far. It has also advanced Alexa integrations. Yes, you can access the live feed on an Amazon smart display, but you can also use the command to chat with the one on the smart display at your door "Alexa, open the front door."

This two-way conversation function via an Alexa smart display is only available for ring devices.

Other notable ringtones: the battery-powered or hard-wired video bell 2 for $ 199 and the hard-wired video bell Pro for $ 249.

Read the review on the Ring Peephole Cam.

Chris Monroe / CNET

The Ecobee SmartThermostat is a thermostat for $ 249. This model replaces the Ecobee4 smart thermostat, but offers many of the same great features.

Control your SmartThermostat through the Ecobee app and use the voice commands Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri to adjust the temperature of your Smart Thermostat. However, it is Alexa’s voice control that really stands out here because the thermostat itself has a built-in Alexa smart speaker.

That means you don't need a separate Echo device – just plug in your thermostat, activate the speaker, and ask Alexa questions.

Read the Ecobee SmartThermostat test.

Chris Monroe / CNET

The Amazon Echo Show 8 is the latest smart display from Amazon. For $ 130, you get an 8-inch screen with the best resolution of any echo show to date, a camera shutter, and all the smart features of previous Amazon smart displays.

The Echo Show 8 has a built-in Alexa speaker. That means you can use this smart display to place your bids using Alexa voice commands. And since it's an intelligent display, it offers enhanced compatibility with Alexa-enabled surveillance cameras.

Ask Alexa to "open the front door" if someone calls your Ring Peephole Cam and you can see the live feed on your Show 8 – and actually speak to the person directly from the smart display.

Read the Amazon Echo Show 8 review.

Tyler Lizenby / CNET

August's Smart Lock Pro, along with the Connect Wi-Fi module, is a great Smart Lock. With the Smart Lock Pro, most standard bolts can be retrofitted, so you don't have to deal with a complicated installation. The Connect module enables remote access and remote control of your Smart Lock outside the Bluetooth range.

This product comes with an opening / closing sensor (DoorSense) attached to the door on which your Smart Lock Pro is installed. This way, the app can not only tell you whether the door is locked or unlocked, but also whether the door is open or closed.

The Smart Lock Pro works with Alexa, so you can lock and unlock your door using an Alexa-enabled smart speaker.

Read the August Smart Lock Pro test.

Chris Monroe / CNET

SimpliSafe is a solid home security system for do-it-yourselfers with a lot of accessories, so you can expand the system as needed. The starter kit costs $ 230 for a hub, keyboard, keychain, motion sensor and door / window sensor.

SimpliSafe also works with Alexa, so you can arm the system with simple voice commands and check its status.

No contract is required for SimpliSafe. Monthly app access fees start at $ 15 and increase to $ 25 if you want professional monitoring.

Read the SimpliSafe test.

Tyler Lizenby / CNET

The latest version of the Philips Hue White LED works with ZigBee and Bluetooth. Adding Bluetooth is important to Philips Hue because you don't need a Philips hub for these smart lights to work.

Instead, the smart lights connect directly to your phone – and work with Alexa voice commands. Ask Alexa to turn on the living room light or dim the dining room light to 70%.

Philips Hue White LEDs cost just $ 15 each, so you don't have to spend a lot of money on these uncomplicated Alexa-enabled light bulbs.

Read the Philips Hue White LED article.

Chris Monroe / CNET

The TP-Link Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini is a big name for a tiny smart plug that only costs $ 30. A smart plug like this connects directly to a wall outlet via your Wi-Fi connection and turns your non-smart lights, fans, and other devices into smart devices.

Use the TP-Link app to connect and control devices – or to win Alexa. Say "Alexa, turn on the reading lamp" so that the plug mini smart plug controls the connected devices with ease.

Read the test on TP-Link Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini.

Continue reading: Best smart plugs for 2020

Chris Monroe / CNET

The Amazon Echo Flex is a tiny smart speaker that plugs directly into an electrical outlet. For $ 25, it offers all the benefits of Alexa, plus a USB port for additional modules – like a motion detector and a night light.

As the name suggests, the Flex can be used for many functions to improve the security of your home and expand Alexa hearing when you need help in less central corners of your home.

Using a motion sensor, Alexa can also create automations based on your movement, turn on the lights when you enter a room, or deliver your morning messages when you sit down for breakfast.

Read the Echo Flex CNET test.


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The Alexa landscape

With Voice Assistant from Amazon, you can more easily control the devices in your home, set timers and find out how long it takes to get to the office. However, privacy is becoming increasingly important as smart speakers and displays become more popular.

Report that Amazon stores transcripts of your voice callsEven after you deleted the Alexa audio recordings, there were concerns about user privacy. Senator Chris Coons, a Delaware Democrat, wrote a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Find answers to Amazon Alexa user data and how they are stored. Amazon has since introduced the feature "Alexa, delete everything I said today", The technology giant says that's the way it is break new ground for customers to delete their transcripts.

In contrast to previous Echo Show devices, the latest Amazon Smart Display, the Echo Show 8, has an integrated camera shutter.

Amazon is not alone. Facebook. Google and other major technology companies have raised their own privacy and data usage issues.

Fortunately, Amazon and others seem to be working to regain our trust. Did you prevent these privacy concerns from buying a voice assistant (Alexa or otherwise)? Weigh in the comments below.

Do you have any questions? Read more about Alexa.

Originally published in 2019 and updated regularly.