Three of Our Favorite AND Least Favorite Amazon Devices – Do You Agree?
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Devices and Tablets and Buttons – OH MY!
Do you get overwhelmed browsing all of the devices that Amazon has to offer and wonder which ones are really worth buying (and which ones are NOT)? There are SO many Amazon devices on the market… from Echo & Alexa Devices to Fire Tablets and Kindle E-readers to Dash Buttons, plus more! 😳
So which are really worth the money? Look no further! We’ve narrowed down (and dished) on three of our favorite and three of our least favorite Amazon devices.
Our Top Three FAVORITE Amazon Devices:
1. Echo Show ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
We LOVE the Amazon Echo Show because it does everything the Echo does, but it also has a 7″ touchscreen display that can be used to show you flash briefings, Amazon Video content, music lyrics, security cameras, photos, weather forecasts, to-do lists, Audible audiobooks, and more!
Plus, you can call almost anyone hands-free, or get in some face time by making video calls to family and friends who own an Echo Spot, Echo Show, or the Alexa App. Better yet, you can instantly connect to other Echo devices around your home.
The Echo Show also allows you to turn your household into a safe haven by tapping into existing security camera feeds. Just ask Alexa to show you the front door or to check in on the baby’s room (note this only works with compatible cameras from companies like Amazon). What’s more, you can go full-on smart home and have your Echo Show turn on lights or the TV, set thermostats, and control Amazon Video on Fire TV with compatible smart home devices.
Although the Echo Show is not portable, we feel it offers the best overall Echo experience!
- Pros: The Echo Show does everything the original Echo does, but many of those features are much better when you have a screen. Given that the Show is only $50 more than the standard Echo, it’s definitely a worthwhile investment for anyone looking to add a digital assistant to their home. Plus, it’s easy to use with the new video and touchscreen controls!
- Cons: The 7-inch touchscreen has a low resolution (1024 x 600, the same resolution as Amazon’s Kindle Fire 7 tablet) and no privacy shutter on the camera. It’s also not portable.
- Price: Currently $229.99 on Amazon, BUT for a limited time when you add two Echo Show devices to your cart, you’ll automatically receive $150 off your order.
Check out this review from an Amazon customer…
“I know that many media folks have stated that the “Drop-in” feature is creepy and I can see their point. Here’s a different perspective: mom is now almost 95 & she has short-term memory dementia. She’s in great spirits but I really can’t teach her anything technical, like dialing a phone or even pressing a memory dial button. She lives near my sister and is 2 hours away so visiting is always a bit of a project.
I thought I’d try setting a Show next to her rocking chair. I can now “Drop-in” on her every day and share some face time with her, visit with her granddaughter, see the dog whom she LOVES, and just make her smile. The beauty is that there is no interaction needed on her end, the Caregivers and my Mom love this setup. The fact that I can use my phone from anywhere and actually see and talk to Mom, and show her things is hugely entertaining and comforting for Mom, and everyone in the family.”
2. Fire HD 10 Tablet with Alexa ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
The Fire HD 10 Tablet is another one of our favorite Amazon devices because you can enjoy millions of movies, TV shows, songs, Kindle eBooks, magazines, Android apps, and games—plus Netflix, Facebook, HBO, Spotify, and more!
As if that wasn’t enough, you can also snap photos, take videos, and use the Alexa hands-free mode to pause videos, play music, open apps, and even show weather!
Alexa even works with devices like lights, switches, thermostats & security cameras from SmartThings, Insteon, Nest, ecobee, Arlo, Ring, and Wink. That means you can dim the lights from the couch to watch a movie or even change the temperature on your thermostat while reading at the table!
- Pros: Featuring a sharp 1080p screen with significant RAM and processor upgrade, the Fire HD 10 is inexpensive and powerful – a great value! Plus, the hands-free Alexa works well.
- Cons: Still no Google apps, which means no Gmail, no Google Maps, and no Google Calendar.
- Price: Currently $164.99 (32 GB – without Special Offers) on Amazon.
Check out this review from an Amazon customer…
“I’ll preface this by saying I have 6 other Fire tablets, so I’m very much an Amazon fan. That said, my Fire HD 10 is my favorite of the lot. Why? Well, it’s got Dolby sound, which is awesome for watching movies. It loads apps fast, I never wait. It has a snappy response when you type or want to do anything, and honestly, it loads faster than my iPad. I’m blind, but from what I’m told, the display is beautiful and clean.
The fact that you can get a 64 gig Fire with expandable storage that can make it hold more than many ultrabooks is amazing. It is durable, light and thin. The battery life is amazing. Using VoiceView to read email, play some games, and type a paper, I’ve gotten more than 10 hours out of it. Alexa hands-free makes Siri look like a child’s toy. I can open any app with Alexa, and she can just go with me anywhere. The For You screen has allowed me to find new books and things I like, that I’d never have found before. And the big screen allows me to watch movies with other folks instead of alone.“
3. Fire TV Stick with Alexa Remote ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Your cable provider might not be the biggest fan of the Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote since it allows you to eliminate your cable TV or satellite bill! You can enjoy tens of thousands of channels, apps, and Alexa skills with access to over 500,000 movies and TV episodes from Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, HBO GO, SHOWTIME, NBC, and more (plus, access millions of websites like YouTube and Facebook with browsers like Silk and Firefox).
The Alexa Voice Remote allows you to easily find, launch, and control content simply by telling Alexa what you want to see or do. You can even press the microphone button on the Remote and ask her to play music from Pandora, order a pizza from Pizza Hut, shop for popcorn or snacks 😋, and more!
- Pros: Amazon’s Fire TV Stick is faster and less expensive than ever and comes with an Alexa-enabled voice remote out of the box, making it the best budget-friendly media streamer.
- Cons: You will need a WiFi connection in order to use the Fire TV Stick. Also, you can’t access YouTube through its own app but must stream content in browsers like Silk and Firefox.
- Price: Currently $39.99 on Amazon.
Check out this review from an Amazon customer…
“Earlier this month, my TV entertainment included Dish 200+ channel satellite TV, 20Mbps turbo internet, Netflix, and Amazon Prime. After doing some research, I bought 3 Amazon Fire Sticks with the voice remote, canceled Dish, upgraded to 30Mbps internet, added Sling 25 channels, added standard Hulu, and CBS All Access. Guess who still gets 96+% of the channels watched, added Prime Music and several hundred shows (that networks don’t play) to all the TVs in the house, and saved over $700 per year compared to what I paid this past year? I did.
I never thought of “cutting the cord” until I really looked into it all. Getting Amazon Fire Sticks are worth it and they work well….and once you get used to knowing what show plays where, it’s a no-brainer.”
And this review from a Hip2Save Sidekick…
“We love our Fire TV stick with remote. It’s easy to view multiple multimedia types in one spot, and simple to use. So simple our 7-year-old uses it to watch her shows and movies, too, and also to play games.”
Three of our LEAST FAVORITE Amazon Devices:
1. Echo Look ⭐⭐⭐
The Echo Look is one of our least favorite devices since it seems expensive for not offering a lot of additional features. With many of the same functions as the Echo, the Look also takes full-length photos of your daily look using just your voice. It also allows you to blur the background of your photos to make your outfits pop, and the Style Check feature via the app gives you fashion advice on your outfits.
The price, however, is almost $100 more than the Echo, which seems pricey for a device that only takes and edits your photos to offer fashion advice. Our advice: Unless you’re an aspiring fashion designer, buy a full-length mirror, ask your friend about your outfits, and take/edit your own photos… and buy the Echo instead.
- Pros: The Echo Look has features any fashionista would enjoy and has decent video/photo quality. It also retains all the features of the original Echo and all the Alexa skills.
- Cons: It’s relatively expensive, so if you’re not wanting all of the fashion-related features, you’d be better off with the cheaper Echo or Echo Dot.
- Price: Currently $199.99 on Amazon and only available by invitation for Prime members.
Check out this review from a Hip2Save sidekick…
“This was the first echo device I had in my home. I thought the addition of the style check would be worth the extra money just as a fun little bonus for my teenage daughter and I, but honestly after trying it out a few times it lost it’s novelty and appeal. It allows you to make small changes to your outfit and then it picks the best option and gives you the reason why. It did seem to be fairly accurate and gave good explanations why it picked one over the other. In the end, unless you are a fashion blogger, or a style maven it’s probably not worth the extra money.”
2. Amazon Tap ⭐⭐⭐
The Amazon Tap has similar features to the Echo but it’s not as impressive when it comes to turning your house into a smart home. If you’re simply looking for a portable Bluetooth speaker with a rechargeable battery so you can take it with you or listen to music in the backyard, you can likely find one for much less that works just as well.
If you’re looking for a device that you can use around your house to make grocery lists, set reminders, and ask questions, opt for the Echo instead. Plus, the convenience of not having to use your hands to initiate a command is a nice feature of the Echo devices.
- Pros: The Amazon Tap is battery operated, which makes it portable. It also offers the same Alexa voice assistance features as the Echo, including hands-free activation – and it’s rumored to have better sound quality than the Echo Dot (but worse than the Echo).
- Cons: It’s expensive and has only average audio quality compared to more affordable, dedicated Bluetooth speakers. Also, the Tap does not support multi-room music.
- Price: Currently $99.99 on Amazon.
Check out this helpful review from an Amazon customer:
“I bought this as a mobile option for the Echo. However, this product falls short for three reasons.
- Currently does not support multi-room music.
- Sound quality is far below the Echo and is on par with $20 range Bluetooth speakers.
- There is latency between saying the wake word “Alexa” and the command. You have to say “Alexa” and then pause around half a second before speaking the command. This means you can’t talk to it the same way you can other Alexa enabled devices.
While I will admit it’s nice to have an Alexa enabled device that fits in a cup holder, a few small improvements would make this a far better device. It needs to automatically enable the hands-free mode when connected to the charging dock. It needs to support multi-room music, and the latency for voice recognition needs to be addressed. However, even with these changes, the sound quality at this price point is somewhat unacceptable, so I don’t see this device ever deserving a 5-star rating.”
3. Dash Buttons ⭐⭐
The Dash Button is a Wi-Fi connected device that re-orders your favorite product with the press of a button. Each Dash Button is paired with a product of your choice, which is selected during the set-up process. When you’re running low, press the Dash Button and an order will be initiated.
If you’re thinking, “Oh yikes! Someone in my household will press that non-stop,” don’t fret (there’s order protection)! With this setting, Dash Button won’t place a new order until your prior order is delivered—regardless how many times the Dash Button is pressed. You will also receive an order notification for every order placed, and you can cancel orders at any time before they are marked as “Shipping Soon.”
Yes, the idea of reordering your favorite products at the tap of a button does have its appeal, but it comes with some drawbacks, including not necessarily always getting a good deal when you press the button to reorder an item.
- Pros: It’s easy and convenient, especially if you don’t have many other shopping options. Whenever you run out of an item, just press the button and an order will be on its way to you.
- Cons: The battery is not rechargeable, so when the device runs out of juice, there’s no way to charge or replace the battery. This means you have to buy a new button. Also, Amazon’s prices fluctuate, so you’ll never know exactly how much the item you order will cost you.
- Price: Currently $4.99 each on Amazon, BUT register your button and get a $4.99 credit on eligible products ordered through Dash Button. Go here for more details.
Check out this review from a Hip2Save Sidekick:
“We considered Dash Buttons, but figured we may go into bankruptcy with 3 kids pressing the Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers Dash Button all day, expecting it to magically pour out of the cabinets in real-time.”