Top positive review
Fantastic Gadget! Game Changer!!
7 March 2018
Amazon Echo Plus: Bought 17th Jan: Without free Bulb Scheme: Seller-Cloudtail Pvt. India Ltd.
Firstly, this is a 5 Star-100% positive review of the Amazon Echo Plus!
However as all reviews will tell you what the Amazon Echo Plus does, so let me start with the most important things that it DOES’NT DO: -
●Amazon has NOT launched the Amazon Household feature in India. This means that Alexa is locked on only to your voice and your wife and kids might not be able to use it. It is not mentioned in the details anywhere and the advertisements show otherwise. They are working on a solution for India also which might release any time now.
**********However, that being said, there is a work around (Jugaad) for this which I have discovered. You can login to the Amazon.co.uk site with your India Amazon credentials and add family members in the Household feature there. Amazingly after that, Alexa in India starts recognising multiple voices. You can thank me for this discovery. It’s working perfectly for me. Wife and Kids are having a blast.
● Alexa cannot control the Amazon Firestick in India even though the feature is available across the world. Have chatted with Amazon customer care and both of these feature will be available soon. It would be fantastic to just to ask Alexa to play a particular movie etc and have it play on a Firestick connected TV. Pure science fiction. Waiting on edge for this feature to be launched in India.
●Till last week Amazon could play individual songs and playlist from many sources but you could not create your own personal playlists or add songs to a particular playlist. With the Launch of Amazon Music this problem has been solved. Amazon Music is included free in your Prime membership and you can simply login and create as many playlists as you want on the website/or using Alexa and simply ask Alexa to play that particular playlist according to your mood. It was really frustrating not having facility for personal playlist as when I wanted to listen to 5 of my favourite songs, I would have to individually tell Alexa, one by one to play the songs. Thank god this is resolved.
●Indian-ized accent can be sensed in Alexa’s voice. Easily recognizes sentences with heavy Indian accents too. Glad Amazon took care of personalizing this aspect.
●The routines and schedules which you can create on the Alexa App are basic as of now. Example: If user say’s “XXXX”, then say “XXXX” and then do this, with options limited to News/Smarthome/Weather. I would really like... if user says “XXXX”, then do this and do this and do this etc.. Longer routines should be configurable. This might come soon too but is currently limited.
●Certain instructions to Alexa need to be very specific and clear. Vague questions might elicit an “I don’t know or I don’t understand” response. Often rephrasing the question will get you the answer you were expecting.
With new technologies you’ve got to be a bit patient. These niggles are totally acceptable to me as the fantabulous benefits and features totally outweigh these problems.
Started Home automation project with my Bedroom First:
I have configured one Philips Hue 10W B22 bulb (White & Color) in my room right now. Installation was easy. Plugged in bulb. Asked Alexa to “detect devices” and bulb was discovered as “light 1”. Asked Alexa to rename as “light”. Started using directly without even opening the Philips Hue App yet thanks to the inbuilt hub on the Echo Plus. Favourite commands with bulb: Alexa, -> Switch ON light -> switch OFF light -> Change color of light to XXX -> Increase brightness of light -> Decrease brightness of light. Also in Alexa app have created routine where when I say “Alexa, Good Morning” then Alexa switches the light ON, greets me with a phrase that I have set and plays the news from my NDTV Flash briefing. Have also tried scheduling light with Alexa. Simple command “Alexa, wake me up a 6:30”. Alexa switches ON light gradually at 6:30 with alarm. Can configure to start the day with a song too after it switches ON light.
DOES EVERYTHING ELSE IT PROMISES!!
My verdict: If you’re a gadgets freak, or crazy about home automation, a sci-fi fan, a show-off, a trendsetter in your group/family/area/office, any and all of the above, then don’t think.. Just get this now...It’ll blow your mind!!
Next in Bedroom automation Project:
-Have ordered one 10 amp wifi Smart Wireless Switch which works With Amazon Alexa to automate powering ON another light (Tubelight) from the power source itself, rather than buying an expensive bulb.
-Have ordered one 16 amp wifi Smart Wireless switch which I will use to power on the Air Conditioner using voice command on Echo Plus.
-In Process of buying wifi 3 In 1 Smart Plug power strip to power ON TV/Set top box/Firestick etc with Alexa.
Will update this review with more observations soon! Hope this review helps :)