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Author Topic: Amazon Echo  (Read 691 times)
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Crusis
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« on: December 04, 2014, 07:53:15 PM »

I got my Amazon Echo yesterday and was somewhat underwhelmed. While it is very cool technology it isn't nearly as useful as Siri. The majority of my questions were answered with "I don't have an answer or that." One question I asked was how far the earth was to the moon. But Echo did tell me how large the moon was. I was also able to tell it to play specific songs from my prime music which was cool. The sound quality for music isn't that great. My little Klipsh bluetooth speaker is a lot more powerful and clearer.

I understand that it's cloud based and that it will improve. For now, it's a very cool gadget to show friends. I DO think that the Echo has a future but the device needs time to mature.

Anyone else excited about this new gadget?
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farley2k
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« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2014, 08:11:13 PM »

I put my name in a couple months ago to get one but never got the email.  For $99 I was willing to try it but not for $199.  It sounds like I wouldn't have loved it even at $99.

Thanks for testing the waters.
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EngineNo9
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« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2014, 08:58:30 PM »

Any idea if they have issued any software updates for it yet?  I'm curious to know their velocity on updating things and reacting to users.

I'm assuming those would be automatically downloaded and installed when they were available, since it's always online anyway?
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Crusis
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« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2014, 09:33:24 PM »

I'm not sure how they'd get software updated on the device. There's no way to plug it into a USB port of any kind. Maybe it can just download them. Since Echo, like SIRI, is cloud based I suspect all of the updates will happen online. I did notice that Echo was slightly sharper the second day. My son and I did a side by side comparison between Echo and Siri and Echo had a LONG way to go. I'll think about putting together a short video and popping it up on youtube.
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Lee
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« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2014, 12:00:31 AM »

Quote from: Crusis on December 04, 2014, 07:53:15 PM

.
For now, it's a very cool gadget to show friends. I DO think that the Echo has a future but the device needs time to mature.

Ha, you don't make it sound very cool. You can show friends how it doesn't work, nor sound that great!

It seems very strange to release a tech they haven't tested in a $200 device. At least Google/Apple have been playing with it in phones. They seem to understand that the tech isn't there yet for a full blown device based on this (although it's getting there).

I think I said this in the other thread, but we need a company like Google or Apple to do this. Amazon's hardware is ok, but they just copy the big guys. Their claim to fame is cheap, not innovation.

Edit: Did you do to the voice analysis thing? Seems to work quite well in YouTube videos.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2014, 12:11:55 AM by Lee » Logged
Caine
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« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2014, 03:52:44 PM »

Quote from: Crusis on December 04, 2014, 09:33:24 PM

I'm not sure how they'd get software updated on the device. There's no way to plug it into a USB port of any kind. Maybe it can just download them. Since Echo, like SIRI, is cloud based I suspect all of the updates will happen online. I did notice that Echo was slightly sharper the second day. My son and I did a side by side comparison between Echo and Siri and Echo had a LONG way to go. I'll think about putting together a short video and popping it up on youtube.

I'd assume it was like their Kindle devices.  The last two generations have been able to update OTA.  Handled automatically and very slick too as it tells you it updated via a 'book' on your home screen. 
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Lee
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« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2015, 07:07:30 PM »

I am a hypocrite. (Get that out of the way first.)

So I put in to order one, just got the email that I can.

Especially with Siri soon to be attached to my wrist, I am not sure I should. I am a sucker for new toys though.
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rittchard
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« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2015, 08:35:09 PM »

Quote from: Lee on April 21, 2015, 07:07:30 PM

I am a hypocrite. (Get that out of the way first.)

So I put in to order one, just got the email that I can.

Especially with Siri soon to be attached to my wrist, I am not sure I should. I am a sucker for new toys though.

Teehee, I am also a hypocrite and ordered one a while back  thumbsup

Lee, shall we form our own Apple Watch Amazon Echo Hypocrite's Club?
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Lee
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« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2015, 05:25:45 AM »

Quote from: rittchard on April 21, 2015, 08:35:09 PM

Teehee, I am also a hypocrite and ordered one a while back  thumbsup

Lee, shall we form our own Apple Watch Amazon Echo Hypocrite's Club?

I think we should. It will cement our place as GT's upper echelon. nod

I have been trying to get feedback on how people like it, but haven't read anything that has pushed me one way or another. People seem to think it's a neat toy, which is all I am looking for. Although, all my apartment's lights are Hue LEDs, so that is a huge selling point for the Echo. I love the idea of being able to walk in and just say "Hey Alexa, turn on the lights."

Amazon is a strange company. I waited 3 weeks or so for an invitation to buy one, but then once I clicked to buy it, it tells me it is going to be close to 3 months to receive it (July 13). I don't understand what all the waiting is for, it's been out for long enough that they should have some sort of decent production schedule going. Demand can't be that high. Still it's not all bad, if Apple reveals an Apple TV, home integration, Siri controlled box at WWDC, I will just cancel the Echo.

When are you set to get your's Rittchard?
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rittchard
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« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2015, 05:00:03 PM »

A friend of mine kept insisting I should get one, so I finally did the invitation thing, and similarly got a 3 month ship time once I got the invitation.  Estimated delivery date is.... May 20 - June 4.  Definitely a weird stocking issue for a product that didn't seem to have much hype or demand...  makes me less suspicious that Apple purposely creates shortages for their product debuts; perhaps the electronics manufacturing industry as a whole just has trouble with new product launches of significant magnitude.
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EngineNo9
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« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2015, 08:07:46 PM »

Well, the difference with the Echo is that it still a limited-availability, invite-only beta device for early adopters.  It has not been fully launched into open availability yet

I imagine they might even be doing smaller production runs and potentially tweaking hardware while they are tracking how it is being used and improving the software side of things.

FWIW, my parents have one and really like it.  They use it for music, to do lists, shopping lists, morning news briefs, etc.  I don't think there is enough functionality for me to want one, but they have been doing regular updates to it so it may get there by the time it's fully released.
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Crusis
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« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2015, 10:14:10 PM »

Mine makes a lovely addition to the room. It doesn't get used but it looks nice.

It's kind of funny if the name Alexa comes up on the television. The Echo always lights up - waiting for a question.

One fun thing is to take the remote into another room and do a "Simon Says ..." - freaked my kid out a few times she just blasted out something like "Nick, do the dishes."
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« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2015, 01:09:18 PM »

Quote from: Lee on April 22, 2015, 05:25:45 AM

Quote from: rittchard on April 21, 2015, 08:35:09 PM

Teehee, I am also a hypocrite and ordered one a while back  thumbsup

Lee, shall we form our own Apple Watch Amazon Echo Hypocrite's Club?

I think we should. It will cement our place as GT's upper echelon. nod

It will also let the rest of us know who the level 7 susceptibles are around here!
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« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2015, 03:19:20 PM »

Quote from: hepcat on April 29, 2015, 01:09:18 PM

Quote from: Lee on April 22, 2015, 05:25:45 AM

Quote from: rittchard on April 21, 2015, 08:35:09 PM

Teehee, I am also a hypocrite and ordered one a while back  thumbsup

Lee, shall we form our own Apple Watch Amazon Echo Hypocrite's Club?

I think we should. It will cement our place as GT's upper echelon. nod

It will also let the rest of us know who the level 7 susceptibles are around here!

They do love their Hondas.
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