Re: Amazon Echo: My First 10 Days
I'm with most of the rest of you on this one - it seems like this product fits into a grey area, and while the value appears to be there, I'm also a little unsure of who the target audience for it is (indeed, it seems like Amazon might not be sure either). For what it's worth, this article is the first I'm hearing of Echo, but this seems like quite a solid review, Doug, and it looks like you've covered just about everything. I was wondering a bit about the smartphone and desktop integration, but happy to see that's covered here in the comments. I think Lorna makes a good point, though; maybe not with 'firmware updates' per se but it seems like a lot of the missing functionality could be added later. For example, e-mail integration seems possible if the smartphone app is just pushing text to read from your phone to the Echo.
If we consider the whole thing to be a beta of sorts, then most of the shortcoming are forgivable, but nevertheless some of these decisions seem strange from Amazon. Only being able to keep one alarm at a time? I don't see how there was a technical barrrier there, or why they wouldn't think people would have a use for that. The video showcases how the Echo is a little more family-oriented than a Siri, but as BryanG points out there are some hitches with that as well - you don't want your kids buying stuff on Amazon without your say-so. If it's just looking stuff up online, I don't see why it has to limit the sources it uses. I could go on, but we'll just have to see what Amazon plans long-term. At the $99 price, it seems like quite a deal, but the $200 general price seems to relegate it to a more niche category - I'm just not sure what that niche is.