Amazon has overhauled its hardware range, unveiling more than a dozen new products at an event in Seattle, Washington.
There was room for a WiFi router, experimental gadgets, new proprietary technologies – and even an oven. But as you'd expect, the focus was on Alexa-powered devices, with the Echo brand alone featuring nine times on the night.
As the company looks to cement its reputation for producing some of the best smart speakers around, here's an overview of all the new Echo speakers Amazon announced this September.
- Read our Amazon Echo review
New Amazon Echo (2019)
Amazon gave birth to the smart speaker category as we know it when it launched the original Echo back in 2014, and the company's flagship product gets a nice update in 2019.
While the third-gen Amazon Echo looks unchanged, it now features a Dolby-powered speaker system under the hood, comprised of a 3-inch woofer and 0.8-inch tweeter. This should give it a deeper, more powerful sound on a par with the Echo Plus, which also imparts its 3.5mm input/output port to the 2019 Echo.
Priced at $99.99 and available in four colors – charcoal, heather gray, sandstone, and twilight blue – it will be released on October 16 with pre-orders now being taken.
Amazon Echo Studio
More intriguing still is the all-new Echo Studio, a high-fidelity smart speaker that is now the largest offering in the range, measuring 8.1 x 6.9-inches (height x diameter).
It's also the most premium from an audio perspective, with the extra size allowing it to house Amazon's beefiest speaker array yet – a 1-inch tweeter, three 2-inch mid-range speakers, and a 5.25-inch woofer, which combine to enable 3D sound.
This means the Echo Studio is better placed to rival the likes of the Apple HomePod, as well as offering an alternative to the best soundbars, coming as it does with support for both Dolby Atmos and Dolby Digital 5.1.
Whether it not it can compete with the best wireless speakers remains to be seen, but we're looking forward to testing it to see how it stands up.
Priced at $199 and initially available in black only, you can pre-order it today.
- Read our Sonos One review
Echo Show 8, Echo Dot (2019) and Echo Glow
Elsewhere, Amazon updated its affordable Echo Dot for 2019, with the 3rd-gen model integrating an LED clock display under its casing to show things like the time and temperature.
It'll still cost $59.99 and is set to be released on October 16, though you can pre-order it right away – buy two using the code 'DOT2PACK' at checkout to save $20.
A new Amazon Echo Show smart display also broke cover in the form of the Echo Show, with the Facebook Portal rival offering an 8-inch display and upgraded speaker architecture. It start shipping on November 21 and is priced at $129.99, with pre-orders now live.
Finally, there’s a a 'smart lamp for kids' called the Echo Glow (pictured above). Arguably the most eye-catching product to break cover, the Glow changes color and brightness to help children develop good morning and evening routines.
Released on November 20, it costs just $29.99 and can be pre-ordered now.
The TopTen Take
However tempting it may be to pre-order your favorite new Echo devices right away, we'd say there's a strong case for waiting.
As Amazon's latest products aren't actually released until mid-October and early-November, the spectre of Black Friday looms large and suggests a few weeks of patience could be rewarded by a righteous bargain.
Those after the best deals should pay close close attention to the older Echo devices that have just been supplanted, like the 2nd-gen Echo and Dot, as retailers will be aggressively trying to clear the now outdated stock.
And if it's the latest and greatest Echoes you've got your heart set on, we'd be shocked if we didn't see a healthy amount of deals on these as well.
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