Amazon Expands ‘Echo’ Lineup With ‘Amazon Tap’ and ‘Echo Dot’

Amazon Expands ‘Echo’ Lineup With ‘Amazon Tap’ and ‘Echo Dot’

Amazon’s Echo has proven to be a resounding success, so it makes sense that if it sells once, you sell it again. Especially for a major online retailer like Amazon. The company has announced it is expanding it’s “Echo” personal assistant device lineup, with the addition of the Amazon Tap, and the Echo Dot.

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The two new devices are part of an effort by Amazon to expand the Echo’s (and thereby Amazon’s), reach throughout your home. Amazon’s original Echo has proven popular, due to the built-in “Alexa” personal assistant’s ability to recognize natural sentences and queries, and her fast response when answering queries from users. Amazon has offered a SDK for the Echo, leading to all sorts of fun and useful “Skills” that have expanded the Echo’s capabilities since its debut.

Amazon Tap

The Amazon Tap ($129.99) is a portable Bluetooth speaker, with Alexa capabilities built-in. Its Wi-Fi connectivity allows the Tap to offer virtual voice assistant capabilities. However, likely to conserve battery power, the Tap does require the “tap” of a button residing on its side to accept voice commands, unlike the original AC-connected Echo, which is always listening.

Amazon Expands 'Echo' Lineup With 'Amazon Tap' and 'Echo Dot'

Features of the Tap include:

  • Just tap and ask for music from Prime Music, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and TuneIn
  • Uses the Alexa Voice Service when connected to Wi-Fi or a mobile hotspot to play music, read the news, provide weather reports, and even order a pizza
  • Streams all your music via Bluetooth from your phone or tablet
  • Delivers crisp sound powered by Dolby, with dual stereo speakers that provide 360º omni-directional audio
  • Provides up to 9 hours of playback
  • Always getting smarter and adding new features and skills
  • Includes Charging Cradle

The Tap will be available for delivery on March 21, 2016, but is now available for pre-order.

Amazon Echo Dot

The Amazon Echo Dot ($89.99) is available starting today, but is currently only available for purchase by Amazon Prime Members who already own an Amazon Echo, or Fire TV device. To order an Echo Dot, use a Amazon Echo or Amazon Fire TV and just ask: “Alexa, order an Echo Dot.” You can learn more about ordering Echo Dot via Alexa Voice Shopping.

Amazon Expands 'Echo' Lineup With 'Amazon Tap' and 'Echo Dot'

The Dot is a small, puck shaped device that extends the Amazon Echo’s reach into other rooms of your home. It connects to existing speakers in your home to reply to queries or stream music. While it does have a built-in speaker, that is used for audio prompts and alarms.

Amazon Dot features include:

  • Uses the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, read the news, set alarms, control smart home devices, and more using just your voice
  • Connects speakers over Bluetooth or with the included audio cable to play music from Prime Music, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and TuneIn
  • 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 computer
  • Hears you from across the room with far-field voice recognition, even while music is playing
  • Controls smart home devices like lights, switches, thermostats, and more with compatible connected devices from WeMo, Philips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, ecobee, and others
  • Always getting smarter and adding new features and skills
  • Learn more about Bluetooth speakers that work well with Echo Dot

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