Echo 2nd Generation: Top 3 Features
Amazon’s newer Echo offers:
- Smart Alexa technology
- Crisper sound than original
- Multi-room audio
Benefits of Alexa with the Echo Gen 2
Amazon connects the Echo speaker to the Alexa app to make it easy to do many activities. Put on music, ask questions, integrate it with at-home devices, and more. You can even call people using Alexa with voice command.
Not sure what questions to ask Alexa? It could be anything from the weather forecast to the name of the latest song from Bon Jovi. You can even order dinner via voice command. Smart home devices that can connect via the speaker include lights and thermostats. Hands-free calling is great when your hands are full, or you’re on the move within the house. This convenient speakerphone experience is also available with the JBL Xtreme.
Activating Alexa is as easy as clicking the button on the top of the Echo (Second Generation) Bluetooth Speaker. If you don’t want to use the voice-activated app then simply mute the microphone via the other button on the top. For WiFi, it works with both 2.4 and 5 GHz networks. You can also stream audio from your mobile device to Echo or from Echo to the speaker.
Lastly, this smart speaker is portable. It measures 5.8 inches x 3.4 inches by 3.4 inches. Easily move it from room to room within your house whenever you want.
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Amazon Echo Gen 1 vs. Gen 2: Pros & Cons
By now you’re likely wondering how the second generation is a step up from the original Echo. The Gen 2 smart speaker is as good looking as the first one. While it is still cylinder in shape, it is shorter and has a cloth cover that protects against fingerprints. The great thing about being a cylinder is that the speaker offers 360 degrees of music; you don’t have to move it a certain way to hear audio. The fabric cover comes in different colors too so that you can customize it to your home décor.
A great upgrade Amazon made with the Gen 2 is the Dolby speaker technology. If you like your music loud, it will still be crisp for vocals and have good bass when you want it with an integrated 2.5-inch woofer. The sound is sharper than the original model, as per some online reviews, while other users write that the quality is still not excellent. In our opinion, getting Dolby technology at an affordable price for this Bluetooth speaker is impressive, and Dolby is a reputable name. Plus, the use of the speaker with hands-free commands likely makes it worth the price tag for most people. The Gen 2 Echo Bluetooth speaker has a 0.6-inch tweeter too for close-to-flawless treble.
Amazon is phasing out the original Echo; only the second-generation model is available new. As for the price comparison, interestingly this Gen 2 Bluetooth speaker is less expensive than the original one was when it released new.
Both Echo models are corded. We recognize that some users may like battery powered devices more than chorded ones. But we also see the positive point here that there’s no battery to drain and have to replace or recharge over time.
What Makes the Echo (2nd Generation) Different?
Another elevated feature the original portable speaker didn’t have is the multi-room audio. What does this mean? You can now listen to one song in the bedroom, for example, while someone else at home plays a different song in the laundry room.
If you are a household that wants to share the Amazon Echo Gen 2, then you’ll likely enjoy this feature. Also great is that the new Echo provides the ability to send text messages via Alexa, in addition to hands-free calling. And the Echo 2nd Generation has seven microphones, making it easy for the Bluetooth speaker to hear you from whatever direction you are at while speaking to it and even with a song playing at the same time.
Speaking of music, this portable speaker works with Pandora, Spotify, Amazon Music and others. And if listening to tunes isn’t high on your list of priorities, other audios you can access include news briefs and Amazon audiobooks. Turn the volume up or down with ease by pressing the dedicated buttons at the speaker’s top.
Final Words on Amazon’s Echo (2nd Generation) Bluetooth Speaker
If you’re looking for a portable Bluetooth speaker that is affordable and provides quality sound, including good bass, Amazon’s Echo Second Generation may be right for you. While it’s not waterproof, it does integrate with the Alexa app for hands-free commands that make your daily life easier. It’s a step up from the original Echo with features such as multi-room audio, is attractive, and has Bluetooth connectivity. We give it a positive review for being so high in value.