Amazon has introduced two compact digital device, Tap and Echo Dot, with virtual assistant that makes use of Alexa Voice Service. The first sports dual built-in speakers that offers 360-degree omni-directional stereo sound output, enhanced by Dolby Audio for best listening pleasure. Unlike the first, the Echo Dot has a small built-in speaker, considering its small size.
The Amazon Tap works much like Echo that was introduced in 2014, and can be considered as a successor. It has a built-in Wifi 802.11 a/b/g/n that when connected to a WiFi network or mobile Hotspot can be use to stream music from Sportify, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, Pandora, Prime Music and more. Tapping on the Mic icon button located at the front activate Alexa Voice Service. This enable an user to search, play, stop, and skip music with voice command. In addition, an user can request for latest news headlines, football scores, and weather forecast using the voice command service.
The AVS tend to learn and adapt to a user behaviour as time goes on, making it smarter. Music can be stream directly from Tap to a smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth connection for personal listening experience as well. Its built-in battery is claimed to last for 9 hours on a single charge.
Amazon Echo Dot
It miniature design might deceive you, but the Echo Dot has more under its sleeve. It also use Alexa Voice Service for voice command when connected to a Wifi network, but this can be use to control other Smart Home devices connected to the same network unlike Tap. It sports seven microphone array on the head with far-field voice recognition that listen and can pick up voice signal from a far distance, even in a noisy environment.
The Amazon Echo Dot can be use to control other Smart Home devices like Thermostat, Switches, Lights and other compatible devices from manufacturers like Philips Hue, Ecobee, WeMo, Samsung SmartThings e.t.c. Its built-in speaker works pretty well for Alarm feature onboard. Besides its Smart Home control functionality, the Echo Dot can serve as a central audio hub. Speakers can be connected wirelessly or through bundled audio wire to stream and play music from Pandora, Sportify and the rest in real time.
Pricing and Availability
The Amazon Tap costs $129.99 USD and is available for pre-orders on the company website. It will start shipping from 31st of March. The Echo Dot is priced at $89.99 USD and will be available for Amazon Prime members.