Amazon is constantly expanding the number of Alexa-enabled devices on the market. With consumers wanting more options to control their smart devices and smart homes, there has been a surge in products which are compatible with Alexa.
Many devices are directly from Amazon, recently other manufacturers have been creating compatible products. Some of these work through a core Alexa-compatible device (like the Echo) and some function through syncing with Amazon’s Alexa app.
There are so many options available, so finding the right device for your preference can be tricky. Here are some of the best Alexa-enabled devices available on the market today, ranked in order of usefulness.
10. The Echo Dot – Best Core Alexa Compatible Device
If you want to use Alexa with ease and like the idea of creating a smart home environment, the Echo Dot is the right device for you.
Smaller in stature and considerably less expensive than the Echo, the Dot fits easily on a side table or shelf for room-wide access. The Dot is the most popular voice-controlled speaker offered by Amazon. With over 13,000 reviews and an average of 4.5 stars, this device gives big results in a compact size.
- Hub for other Alexa-enabled devices – lights, thermostats, etc.
- 4 microphones extend voice-control range
- Easy to install and use
- Improved speaker for richer sound – music and phone calls
- Small size = portability
The installation is plug-and-play easy. Just connect the device to a wall socket, turn it on, and connect to the internet via the Alexa app. From there, all it takes is a simple “Alexa -” to wake the Dot up, and the virtual assistant will perform whichever command you give it. The Dot is able to stream songs or radio stations, call people with compatible devices or apps, let you know what the weather is – everything you expect from an Alexa-enabled device.
As a central point for any other Alexa-enabled devices you may have, the Dot outperforms itself. From a multitude of products like home security cameras, smart plugs, and robot vacuum cleaners – it is a breeze for the Dot to interact with them all.
With 4 far-field microphones, the Dot can easily pick up voice commands from anywhere in a large room. Extended range means less effort for you – calling on Alexa to change the song from the sofa just became a lot easier! A greater sensitivity also allows the Dot to hear you if music is playing, providing it isn’t at the highest volumes.
While the Dot has an impressive speaker of its own, you have the ability to connect your own for an extra sound boost. Choose either Bluetooth or a 3.5 mm audio cable to further enjoy music or other audio with your device.
9. The Echo Plus – Best Smart Home Control Device
You may be thinking there isn’t much difference between the Dot and the Echo Plus. After all, they both do basically the same thing, right?
Think of the Plus as an amped-up version of the original. It can perform all of the functions of the Echo and the Dot but boosted considerably. Available in a variety of colours to suit your home decór, the Plus is bigger and, in many ways, better than the other Echo devices.
- Built-in hub for easy smart home device set-up
- 7 microphones
- Improved speaker
- Plug-and-play device
For those looking to create a smart home environment, the Plus is an obvious choice for an Alexa-enabled device. The built-in Zigbee hub is designed to take the legwork out of connecting smart home devices. Asking Alexa to ‘discover my devices’ means your virtual assistant does the work. Alexa will find and set up smart bulbs, thermostats, and whatever other devices you have, which can be easily controlled through the Alexa app.
Taking notes from previous instalments, the Plus includes an improved Dolby Play 360-degree speaker. Sound is crisp and clear whether you are using a streaming service for music or on a phone call with a friend. To complement the improved sound quality, the Plus also includes 7 microphones, beam-forming technology, and noise cancellation. This means that Alexa will always hear you even if you have music playing. And there are plenty of Alexa commands that you might need while music is playing!
The larger device size makes the Plus less portable than other Echo devices. It has no battery pack, which means it must be plugged into a socket to work. And while it is a bigger and better version of the Echo, it also has a bigger price tag – sometimes over 4 times the cost of the Dot.
8. Philips Hue Starter Kit – Best Smart Light Set Up
One of the most popular smart home additions is Alexa-enabled lighting. With the Philips Hue, users are able to control their home lights. A simple command – “Alexa, turn on the living room lights” – illuminates a room. The option to control the lighting in more than one room makes the Hue one of the most useful Alexa-enabled devices available currently.
- Easy to install – no need for professional installation
- Millions of colour options and 50,000 shades of white to choose from
- Control of lights at home or away via the app
- Energy class A+
Ease of use is a big plus for the Hue. The simple installation makes set up a breeze. All you need is a free socket for the Hue Bridge (the device element which controls the lighting) and to pop in the light bulbs. Once connected to the internet and the Alexa app, you can start using your smart device.
The colour options for the Hue are immense. Literally millions of colours are available, with a whopping 50,000 shades of white. Preset colour themes can be chosen, like Savannah Sunset, or you can name a colour for your preference – “Alexa, turn the living room yellow”, for example. Setting the scene is easy, and lights can be synced to respond to music, movies, and video games for a truly immersive experience.
Being able to control the lights at home or away through the Alexa app is incredibly useful. You’ll never have to come home to a dark house again! Through the Hue Bridge, you have the option to connect up to 50 lights in different rooms.
Additional accessories are available to compliment the Hue. These include a dimmer switch, a motion sensor, and the Hue Tap – a remote control designed to work with the Hue for manual light control. The bulbs themselves are Energy Class A+, which provides peace of mind for those wanting to live a more energy-conscious lifestyle.
7. Eufy RoboVac 11C – Best Alexa Compatible Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
For those of us who don’t like running the vacuum round the house, a robot helper is a great idea. The Eufy RoboVac is a simpler, more economically priced option for users who want to leave the hard work to someone (or something!) else. Compact, easy to control, and thorough, it’s a smart choice for a smart vacuum.
- Good price point for unit quality
- Low-profile design to get under furniture
- Powerful suction for thorough cleaning
- 1.5 hours of cleaning power
- 7-day programmable schedule
Remember when Roombas became hugely popular overnight? The race was on to create a device with the same kind of cleaning power but at a fraction of the cost. That’s where the Eufy RoboVac stepped in – a compact design with similar functionality at an affordable price. The 11C model offers a huge amount of power for the price point.
The powerful suction is designed to ensure thorough cleaning. Measured in pascals, the 11C provides 1000Pa of power, which is more than enough suction for hardwood and low-pile carpets. A dust capacity of 0.55 litres gives the RoboVac plenty of space to collect all the dirt and debris hidden around your home. Three available cleaning modes – Edge, Spot, and Max – let you determine which areas need a deeper clean.
The Eufy RoboVac 11C is 3.1 inches in height. This low profile design means the smart device can slip under your sofas, sideboards, and beds to make sure every corner of your home is sparkling (even the parts you can’t see!). Being able to access all areas can help with dust and other allergies, reducing the level of irritants for a healthier home environment.
Easy to control, the RoboVac starts up with a simple “Alexa, ask RoboVac to start cleaning.” If you feel like taking the reins, you can control the device via the app – almost like a remote-controlled race car, just a little bit slower.
With a 7-day programming schedule, the RoboVac cleans when you want it to. You can essentially ‘set it and forget it’, as the vacuum will return to its dock when it needs recharging. The 1.5 hour cleaning time is ample for cleaning one storey of a mid-sized home.
6. Nest Learning Thermostat – Best Smart Thermostat Device
Battling with the thermostat is something we’re all familiar with. Making sure it isn’t too hot or too cold and that we’re using energy efficiently can be a hassle. The Nest Learning Thermostat is a handy smart device which helps these problems – and which can easily be controlled by Alexa.
- Smart programming to save energy
- Compatible with almost all heating systems
- Built-in sensors monitor the home environment
- Can be installed at home by the user
The main aim of the Nest is to help you control your heating more efficiently. This means no more running up huge energy bills because you left the heating on all day when no-one was home. The smart programming monitors and adjusts to your preferred temperature, learning what you like best at different times of year. It also takes into account the insulation of your home and the weather outside.
A series of built-in sensors monitor the temperature in your home to keep levels steady and to your liking. Temperature is monitored (obviously) but so is humidity, ambient light, and near- and far-field activity. This means that if the Nest notices zero activity, the temperature will be lowered to save energy – clever, isn’t it?
Depending on your preference and level of expertise, the Nest can be installed by you at home without the need of professional assistance. It is about as ‘plug and play’ as a thermostat can get – but you will want to be confident you can install it properly, otherwise Nest offers an installation service for an additional cost. Once installed and connected to the Alexa app, it is ready to go.
An Alexa command will change the temperature, turn the thermostat on or off, or switch the Nest to a preset option which you can configure yourself through the app. With your permission, the Nest will use your phone location to avoid heating an empty house. If someone is at home when you’re not, the Nest can be easily activated with a voice command.
For homes with thermostats for different rooms, the Nest allows up to 20 devices to be controlled per home. This thermostat is compatible with almost all heating systems, with a comprehensive model list available to make sure it will work with yours.
The sleek, modern design means the Nest fits with existing decor quite easily. Many users have commented on how great it looks when installed and up and running. The ‘Farsight’ design means that you can easily see the temperature from across the room – or you can ask Alexa to tell you what the thermostat is set to.
Many smart devices offer the ability to connect to others – and the Nest Thermostat is no exception. Nest also has a device called a Protect, which can be used as a smoke alarm and will turn off your boiler if it detects dangerous levels of carbon dioxide in the air. These devices working together help to keep your home and your family safe.
5. Sonos Beam Compact Smart Soundbar – Best Alexa Compatible Soundbar
What is a smart home setup without a smart sound system? There are many available for consumers to choose from, but one that consistently receives good reviews is the Sonos Beam. With easy setup and the ability to connect to more devices, creating an exceptional home sound system, the Sonos Beam is a compact option with excellent sound quality.
- Movie theatre-quality sound from a compact device
- Easy to set up – no professional installation required
- Wireless connection to other Sonos speakers
- Supports a variety of sound applications – movies, TV, audiobooks, and more!
The compact size of the Sonos Beam, along with its lightweight frame, makes it a portable and versatile soundbar. It fits where you want it to and packs a punch in the sound department – the Beam boast ‘movie theatre-quality sound’ when active and the user reviews agree. A 4.4 star rating and over 200 reviews agree that the sound quality is excellent, regardless of the media playing.
Speaking of media – the Beam is able to play a variety of sound files with crisp clarity. TV shows, movies, Video on Demand, radio, video games, audiobooks, and podcasts are all supported. You choose what you want to listen to and the Beam responds, although some users have noted that the audio-video sync occasionally gets lost. A quick reset often fixes the issue.
The Beam’s voice control means that Alexa can control several different functions and sync with the app easily. This functionality is only available when the Beam is connected via HDMI ARC. Fortunately, an adaptor is included with the device in case your system doesn’t have the right connector. The microphone is wired to the soundboard, meaning that when the device is off, the microphone is definitely off. This function offers the user peace of mind and promotes security as a paramount feature for Sonos.
With the Beam, Sonos has included the ability to connect other same-brand speakers. This allows you to create your own unique home sound system set up depending on your personal preference. All speakers connect wirelessly for a sleek, clutter-free look.
4. Blink Home Security Cameras – Best Alexa Compatible Home Security Device
In this day and age, security is paramount. We are encouraged to keep a close eye on our online accounts, our cars, and especially our homes. The Blink Home Security system allows the user to feel safe and secure in their home. For a reasonable price, the user is able to monitor home security, watch over their pets when away, and is given added peace of mind.
- Wire-free home monitoring system
- No monthly cost or service contract to pay for
- HD video with minimal distortion or blurring
- Runs on 2 AA Lithium batteries for 2 years on average
Gone are the days when installing a home security system meant hiring an electrician to hide all the wires. Discreet, compact, and wire-free, the Blink Home fits seamlessly into the home without being obvious. Installation is as simple as mounting the cameras where you want to monitor – either on the wall or on a convenient shelf or sideboard.
Home security systems often have a monthly fee attached to them – but not the Blink. All motion-activated images captured by the cameras are held in Cloud storage at no additional cost. There are no service contracts to sign or monthly fees to pay for security monitoring. You are in control of your home security.
Blink cameras promise HD-quality images and video with very low amounts of blurring or distortion. User reviews largely confirm this, although there have been occasions where captured images have displayed some blurring or distortion. The motion detection of the individual cameras triggers the recording of a short clip – this can be looked at on the app, as an alert will be sent to the user’s phone or tablet, allowing you to decide how you want to respond. Live monitoring is also available for users who want to check in on their home or pets while away.
The Blink can be controlled via various Alexa devices, including the Dot, Spot, and the Fire TV. This voice control allows you complete control over camera activity and when they are monitoring. The Blink also boasts an impressive battery life. On average, the system requires 2 AA Lithium batteries for 2 years of monitoring – and that’s it. Without the need for a wired power point, cameras can be moved and re-positioned easily for your convenience.
3. Fitbit Versa – Best Alexa Compatible Fitness Tracker
Fitbit fitness trackers have been popular for a few years now and users are always looking for new updates to make them more useful and versatile. The ability to use them with Alexa means keeping on top of fitness goals and related activity even easier than before. With great reviews and a large range of tracking options, the Versa has quickly become the Alexa-enabled fitness tracker to own.
- 24/7 Pure Pulse heart rate monitor
- Tracks all sleep levels to monitor sleep goals
- Stores and plays music
- Offers on-screen workouts
- Interchangeable accessory bands and customisable screen images
In order to help the wearer keep track of their activity levels, the Versa offers Pure Pulse. As a 24/7 heart rate monitor, the Pure Pulse is always active, noting when heart rate climbs, resting rate, and accurately monitoring calories burned. In addition, the Versa is able to accurately monitor sleep levels – light sleep, deep sleep, and REM sleep are all tracked, helping the user meet their sleep goals.
With Alexa-enabled voice commands, users can keep on top of their fitness goals and activity levels. Asking “Alexa, ask Fitbit how my sleep was last night” or “Alexa, ask Fitbit how many steps I’ve taken today” is easy and allows the user to access their information without having the check their device or the Fitbit app.
Music storage and playback reduces the number of devices a user needs during their workouts and playing music does not interfere with the Versa’s fitness tracking abilities. Interchangeable accessory bands make the Versa a versatile addition to your wardrobe, customisable for workouts or a regular daytime look. The Versa is larger than other Fitbit trackers but users have noted how useful this is, being able to read the time and activity information easily.
The Versa’s larger screen makes customisation easy and allows for display of on-screen workouts. The bigger design also offers the user the option to download external apps, to receive push notifications from connected smart phones, and provides water resistance up to 50 metres.
2. Amazon Smart Plug – Best Alexa Compatible Socket Device
We can control our lights, our TVs, and our security cameras with a simple voice command – so why not individual sockets? The Amazon Smart Plug is specifically designed to work with Alexa, making turning sockets and appliances as easy as “Alexa, turn on the coffee maker.”
- Turn sockets on and off with voice control
- Control remotely via the app when away from home
- Schedule appliances
- Very easy to set up – no smart home hub required
With the Amazon Smart Plug, you are able to control any electrical socket in your home with a voice command. By using the Alexa app, you can give particular sockets a name, like ‘coffee maker’. This way, when you give your voice command to turn on the coffee maker, Alexa knows which socket you want activated. And while your virtual assistant can’t make you a cup of coffee (yet!), having your appliances on and ready to go when you need them is very useful indeed.
Unlike other smart home devices, the Smart Plug doesn’t require a home hub to work. If you don’t have an Echo, for example, the plug can still be controlled through the Alexa app. Just open it and speak – or operate the app when you’re away from home to have your appliances on for when you arrive.
The Amazon Smart Plug gives the user the ability to schedule the socket’s activation time. By programming via the app, you can make sure your coffee maker is turned on at 7 a.m. sharp every morning, ready for when you wake up. And when you leave for work at 9 a.m., you can schedule the socket to turn off just as easily.
This Smart Plug is about as ‘plug and play’ as you can. Providing you have an internet connection, you’ll be able to use the plug. The device also has a manual on and off button for your use preference.
1. Nuki Combo 2.0 – Best Alexa Compatible Smart Lock
Our lives are becoming more convenient than ever, and with that convenience we are keen to ensure that our safety and security are paramount. With the Nuki Combo 2.0, we have a smart lock which not only provides convenience but emphasises security for ourselves and our families.
- Easily fits to a standard door locking mechanism
- Turns a smart phone into a door key, with Auto Unlock feature
- Provides Nuki Fobs in place of keys, which can be deactivated in case of loss
- Includes a door sensor to tell you if your door is open, closed, locked, or unlocked
Enjoying the convenience of easy setup, the Nuki Combo 2.0 is simple to install and get working. The locking unit itself fits over your existing mechanism without the need for drilling or screws and can be easily removed without damaging your door.
Through the app, the Nuki turns your smart phone into a key for your door. The sensor detects when you arrive home, enabling the Auto Unlock feature for hands-free entry. If Auto Unlock is off, a simple swipe on the Nuki app unlocks the door – and the app can be accessed from your smartwatch, too – extra easy. By using the Nuki Web, you are able to access information about who has entered and left your home and gives you a constant activity log regarding your home security.
Via the Nuki app, you have the ability to lock and unlock your doors from anywhere. If you have a pet sitter coming, for instance, or your family member has locked themselves out of the house – using the app allows them entry for maximum convenience. Programmable Fobs are available in place of keys, which can be deactivated if they are lost. A Nuki keypad can also be added, with a 6-digit entry code for those who need access but do not have a key or the app.
The door sensor lets you know the status of your door when you ask. A voice command like “Alexa, is my front door locked?” will let you know, and following up with “Alexa, lock my front door” means you are in control of your home security. Commands can be added to programmable routines, such as a “Goodnight” Alexa routine, which may include turning off the lights and making sure the doors are locked tight.
A Smart Exit
Smart devices are turning our homes into smart homes, and with Alexa as a virtual assistant, the possibilities are ever-expanding for smart control. Which device would you like to see become Alexa-enabled?
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