From cars to TVs, Alexa is being integrated into more devices. And this includes standalone smart speakers that are not part of the Echo product line. So we went in search of the best smart speakers with Alexa enabled.
As Alexa becomes part of more ecosystems, it means you will be able to do more than control your smart home/devices. Taking appointments, dictating and reading emails, providing rich voice experiences to your employees and integrating apps are all options.
Whether you are using Alexa for your home or business, the smart speakers on this list will ensure you get the best sound.
Best Smart Speakers with Alexa
Sonos One (Gen 2)
Top Pick: You can connect this speaker to your TV and other devices and listen to sound optimized by software. If you get more than one, you can connect these speakers over WiFi in different rooms and create a home sound system. The Sonos S2 will let you bring voice, streaming and control services together in one place so you can browse your favorite content.
Bose Home Speaker 500
Runner Up: This Bose unit has a noise-rejecting eight-microphone array to easily pick your voice over loud music or across the room. And you can control it with voice, tap the top controls, or the Bose Music app and connectivity includes WiFi and Bluetooth. A color LCD display shows you what is playing, such as song, station, album art and more.
Ultimate Ears MEGABLAST
Best Value: This speaker is a perennial on top of smart speaker reviews. The dual-band Wi-Fi supports 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5 GHz) networks, so you are always connected. The speaker delivers 360-degree sound with powerful bass. And if you want to take it outside, the MEGABLAST is IP67 rated, this means you can drop it in up to three feet of water for 30 minutes and will continue to work.
Marshall Stanmore II
The classic look of this speaker is reminiscent of Marshall amps. And just like the amp, you can use analog controls, but you can also use the app. It is built with advanced components to produce clean sounds which you can connect with Bluetooth or 3.5 mm for an analog listening experience.
If you are looking for a different form factor, the Sonos Beam is a great choice. It is a compact bar with sound tuned by Oscar-winning sound engineers. You can control all of your content on the Sonos S2 app and add more speakers for a surround sound experience.
With audio by Harman/Kardon this small speaker delivers clean sound. The connectivity works with any WiFi router and extends existing WiFi by up to 2,000 square feet. This will ensure your requests to Alexa will be heard and answered. And the app simplifies your WiFi connectivity and maximizes the performance.
B&O PLAY A1
The B&O PLAY A1 is made by one of the premier makers of speakers, Bang & Olufsen. This truly portable speaker gives you 24 hours of battery life along with the B&O sound quality, which includes propriety ambient sound processing. The omnidirectional microphone will pick your voice easily and the aluminum dome is dust and splash resistant.
Qualities to Look for in Your Next Smart Speaker with Alexa
- Microphone: A smart speaker has to listen well. Find out how well the device can pick up your voice and carry out your commands. This includes distance as well as the ambient noise in the room.
- Sound quality: The quality of the sound will vary depending on how you connect your speakers. Whether it is WiFi or Bluetooth, find out the kind of sound the speakers produce.
- Connectivity: Look for a speaker with reliable connectivity because it will determine how well you can use it with Alexa.
- Setup and Usability: As third-party speakers, the setup might take a bit longer. Find devices that are easy to set up and use.
- Design: These speakers are going to be out in the open, so look for designs that can easily be part of your overall decoration.
Smart speakers are now part of many homes and offices, thus becoming an essential household appliance. With Alexa built-in, the speaker becomes part of an ecosystem that is growing to include the many tools people use throughout the day. A quality speaker will make your interaction with Alex much easier and the sound that comes out is more enjoyable.
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Courtesy: Small Business Trends