The Amazon Echo is one of the most innovative devices of the 21st century. This smart speaker enables the user feel like he or she is living aboard the Starship Enterprise, barking orders at the computer.
(For you Star Trek fans, you may set Alexa’s wake word as “Computer”. Here’s how).
One can integrate smart devices with the Amazon Echo, set tasks and schedules for them and make them all voice-controlled.
You may also ask Alexa to do certain things for you, such as playing music or look up news headlines, recipes and other information for you on the internet—hands-free.
Best Echo Alternatives
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Don’t feel like cooking? You can even ask Alexa to order a pizza for you!
The Amazon Echo Dot is a popular option, as it is more portable and less expensive than the Echo.
However, as tastes and budgets vary, you may be looking for something that perhaps looks different, or something that is more compatible to your existing smart devices. Here are 5 Amazon Echo alternatives in the market to pick from.
5 Alternatives To The Amazon Echo (and Dot) With Similar Features
The Invoxia Triby is cute—there’s no other word for it. Measuring only 6 x 1.2 x 6 inches, this small and slim speaker is being marketed as a great addition to your smart kitchen and judging by its features, it is not hard to see why.
The Triby is powered by Amazon Alexa, and—minus some features—works just like an Echo or Dot.
The thing about Triby that makes it stand out is its magnetized back, and given its slimness, you can easily stick this speaker to your fridge to save space on your counter.
You can use it for VoIP calls or connect it to your phone for hands-free conversation up to 15 feet away, so you can make that perfect beef stew while mom’s barking instructions at you.
The Triby generally works as a portable smart speaker, you can listen to music, ask it to read news headlines, look up recipes, and set alarms just to make sure whatever you’re cooking won’t burn while you’re busy multi-tasking.
With four microphones dedicated to listening, the Triby can easily hear you across a room.
And it sounds good too. With two custom-designed speakers and a passive radiator dedicated to amplifying bass, most users are raving about the sound quality this little speaker produces.
The Triby also works as a digital post-it, as you can share your drawings or doodles from your phone and it will show it on its always-on display. It even has a little flag that sticks out whenever it gets a new message!
The Triby comes with a Micro USB connector, so charging is a breeze. It also has impressive battery life: one charge can last up to two days. Two weeks even, if Alexa is disabled.
The Triby is easy to use—just download its free companion app on Android or iOS and you have Alexa at your beck and call, most likely on your fridge (due to how it’s designed, you are going to want to put it there).
Fabriq Portable Smart Speaker
The Fabriq Portable Smart Speaker is a small Alexa-powered smart speaker that comes in a variety of fabric designs to fit your room décor.
This speaker is a great alternative to the Amazon Tap. Like the Tap, the Fabriq is not constantly listening, and you need to tap a button for it to wake.
Sound quality-wise, the Fabriq sounds good for the money. Given its size (3.2x 3.2x 3.2 in), the Fabriq Portable Smart Speaker produces a surprisingly huge sound.
Operating at 5W of power, this speaker features a 2-inch precision driver that delivers crisp highs and clean lows at any volume.
The price is also a lot easier on your pocket as well, as it costs something close to the Amazon Dot. It’s actually like buying a Dot with better sound quality and extra features thrown in.
Connect the Fabriq Portable Smart Speaker to your home Wi-fi network and you can sync up to 10 speakers.
Place one in each room so you can listen to your music or audiobook throughout the entire house, or set it up so that each speaker plays a different sound in each room.
The Fabriq Portable Smart Speaker also has Bluetooth capability so you can connect it to your phone to play music or for voice calls. The Fabriq also features a built-in battery that can last you up to 5 hours on a single charge.
The Fabriq supports both mono and stereo playback. If your TV has Bluetooth capabilities, you can easily connect several of these speakers to create a home theatre system of sorts.
And since it’s compact and lightweight, you can easily bring it with you anywhere you go.
JAM HX-P590BK Portable Speaker
The JAM HX-P590BK is another Alexa-powered speaker that’s a good alternative to Amazon’s smart speaker line up.
The JAM is a priced closer to the Dot, but doesn’t need to be plugged in constantly to work as a speaker. This little speaker comes with a mini USB cord and a single charge can last up to four hours, so you can take it with you.
Users have also reported that the sound quality is also better than that of Amazon’s smallest speaker.
However, like the Tap, the JAM isn’t on constant listening mode—you have to press a button on the JAM to get it to wake up.
It also has the ability to switch off automatically to conserve battery. This may be a plus or a disadvantage, depending on how you use it.
Set up is easy—all you need to do is download the free JAM companion app and you have full control of this little speaker.
With the Alexa Voice Service, you can ask questions like how’s the traffic or the temperature outside. Or you can ask Alexa to stream music from iHeartRadio and other services. Spotify and Tidal can be streamed through the app.
The JAM HX-P590BK is great for listening to audiobooks, as it automatically continues where you stopped when you power it back on.
You can pair several of these speakers over wifi for a multi-room audial experience, or just to fill a larger room with sound.
The JAM Speaker also has Bluetooth abilities. You can easily switch to Bluetooth to connect to your smart phone for music on the go or as a speaker for hands-free phone calls.
The Google Home is a voice-controlled smart speaker that connects to your wi-fi, can answer your questions, play audio for you, and is capable of controlling other smart devices around your house.
The Google Assistant is the same one found on Android smart phones, but is more interactive with Google Home (it can even play games with you), has plenty of personality and can perform lots of tasks.
Setting the Google Home up is simple—download the Google Home app and log on to your Google account. You can then add the device and all smart devices in your home, making it possible for you to control them through the Google Home.
All you have to do is say “Hey Google” or “OK Google” to wake the Google Assistant. If you don’t want to Google Assistant to be listening, there’s a mute button at the back of the device.
You can even ask Google to do tasks like adjust your smart thermostat for you or turn off your smart lights.
The bottom part is customizable, and can be changed to fit your home décor.
If you’re the type that likes a rich sound, then you will like Google Home’s sound quality. It has a surprisingly big, clear bass for a speaker this size.
The Google Home’s voice recognition is superb. It can even recognize multiple voices, making it hassle-free to switch users.
Zettaly Avy Wireless Smart Speaker
The Zettaly Avy is a unique device—this is basically an Android tablet and smart wireless hi-fi speaker rolled into one. It even has a VGA camera!
The Zettaly Avy is a good alternative to the Amazon Echo Show.
This tablet/smart speaker runs on an Android 4.4 Kitkat OS. A newer version operates on Android Lollipop 5.1.
The Zettaly has an internal storage of 8 GB, but this can be expanded to 32 GB with a Micro SD card.
You can use the built-in microphone to make VoIP calls.
Since the device has Bluetooth capability, you can also use it to as an external speaker for your phone to amplify hands-free phone calls, or to stream music or other audio that is locally stored on your phone.
You can connect the Zettaly Avy through Wi-fi to access internet radio stations and services such as Spotify, or stream video from Youtube or Netflix.
This device has an HDMI port on the back, so you can hook it up to a monitor or TV should you want to watch on a bigger screen.
There is also a line-out port if you want to use external speakers instead, although the device’s 10-watt wireless speakers are pretty powerful on their own.
There’s a mini USB port, although you can’t charge the device with this. You’ll need to charge it through the DC port with the 12V charger included. A single charge can last up to 7 hours of playing music, about 4 hours with video.
Echo Competitors: Closing Thoughts
Looking for an alternative to the Amazon Echo would really depend on your lifestyle.
If you have a lot of smart devices in your home and you’re looking for an alternative that would put up a strong fight to the Amazon Echo features-wise, then the Google Home may be your best bet.
If you’re an audiophile, then you would love the Fabriq’s speakers which can switch between mono and stereo sound. They’re easy to pair too, should you get several speakers. Not to mention the portability factor, so you can have good audio anywhere.
Invoxia’s Triby is a good choice if you want something quirky. Users—especially those with kids—have reported having lots of fun with this colorful device.
If you want something with a screen so that you can see stuff, then you may want to go for the Zettaly Avy with its 7” screen.
Thank you for reading this article! I hope you enjoyed it, and found it informative. Feel free to share this article if you liked it, and don’t forget to leave a comment or ask questions in the appropriate section below!