Amazon Echo Invites

Discussion in 'Amazon Echo' started by danDroid, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. cr6

    cr6 Super Moderator
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    Update:
    So I just got off the phone with an extremely helpful Amazon rep. I explained that I preordered the Echo January 15th during their special $99 Prime member promotion and I wanted to know why my Echo still has an estimated ship date of May 28th - July 3rd. I then informed her (in a very calm & courteous tone of course) that I knew of a number of instances where people have ordered the Echo within the last few weeks and have already received them. She apologized for the delay and informed me that this device ended up being much more popular than they originally anticipated and were working hard to keep up with the demand. She put me on hold for maybe 20 seconds, comes back and thanks me for being a valued Amazon Prime member and says my ship date has been updated to April 13th. [​IMG] Yeah boooyeeee!

    S5 tap'n
     
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  2. cr6

    cr6 Super Moderator
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    After numerous delays and two broken promises by Amazon, I finally received my Echo this week. [​IMG]
    I'm super impressed with this device. The voice commands and speaker quality is quite impressive and I've spent the past few days putting it through its paces. I kept thinking to myself, "this device could be so much better with third party app support". Well, I didn't have to wait long. The Echo now supports Google Calendar. Here's the email I got from Amazon earlier today.

    Now you can quickly access your Google calendar events with Echo—just use your voice. If you want to know what's on the calendar for the day or check if you're free for dinner with friends, simply ask Echo.

    To get started, link a Google Calendar within Settings in the Amazon Echo app. Once your calendar has been added, here are some questions you can ask:

    "Alexa, what's on my calendar today?"
    "Alexa, what's on my calendar tomorrow at 9PM?"
    "Alexa, what's on my calendar Saturday?"
    "Alexa, when's my next event?"
    We will be adding even more calendar features over the coming weeks. As always, we look forward to your feedback via the Amazon Echo app and on social media (#AmazonEcho). You can also follow @AmazonEcho on Twitter to stay up-to-date on the latest news and updates for Echo.


    I just set mine up and it works perfectly. That fact that they've partnered with Google gives me hope that they'll eventually add Gmail or Inbox support.

    S5 tap'n
     
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  3. Lindy Lee

    Lindy Lee Member

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    Chris, congrats on the Echo finally arriving! The Echo calendar integration will be better when Alexa can add events. But still cool now. Have you looked at the Hue light integration? I've been using them for a few weeks and am thinking about adding more.

    So many people who weren't interested in the Echo are ordering them now. They seem to be going out the door as fast as they can make them.
     
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  4. cr6

    cr6 Super Moderator
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    Thanks Lindy! I was actually looking into the Hue lighting systems today. A bit pricey but it's definitely something I'm interested in now that my Echo arrived. Best Buy has some starter kits that are fairly reasonable so I'll have to go check them out in person this wknd.


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  5. Lindy Lee

    Lindy Lee Member

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    Chris, check out Amazon. If you don't care about colored Hue bulbs (Alexa doesn't control color) they aren't too bad. One bridge controls up to 50 bulbs. The GE Link bulbs work with it. These are the ones I got: http://www.amazon.com/Philips-45271...F8&qid=1432941971&sr=8-3&keywords=philips hue I got a couple additional Hue Lux bulbs that were $20 each and then discovered these: http://www.amazon.com/GE-Wireless-S...8&qid=1432942397&sr=8-1&keywords=Ge link bulb

    They're a bit brighter than the Hue at the same wattage. Dimming them to 5% isn't quite as low as the Hue's can go, but still pretty dim. They're $15 now but we're $12 the day that I bought them. I haven't seen them go down to that since. But they're LED so they're going to last a very long time. And if you're like me and have them dimmed to different degrees a lot of the time, they'll last even longer.
     
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  6. cr6

    cr6 Super Moderator
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    Wow, that's a much better price than what I was finding. Thanks for the links!

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  7. Lindy Lee

    Lindy Lee Member

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    No problem, Chris. If you get Hue bulbs, they need to be the Hue Lux ones to work with the bridge which is what Alexa works with. (Unless you want Hue colored ones which will work too, but she doesn't do colors yet.) There are other ones that look the same but they don't all work with the bridge. The GE Links work with the Philips Bridge.)

    I'm pretty sure you're going to love the lights. I love being able to dim the 3 bulb fixture in my kitchen without changing out the switch to put in a dimmer. (You can tell I'm Alexa's biggest fan!)
     
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  8. BirdOPrey5

    BirdOPrey5 New Member

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    I still love my Echo, don't get me wrong, but I'm sad about her limited ability to answer general questions. I see Google's OK Google is much better at answering random questions with "1" extra item of detail.

    For example both can answer "What is the Space Shuttle?"

    But ask Alexa 'When was the first Space Shuttle launched?" and at best you'll get a link to ask the question on Bing. If you phrase it "When was the first Space Shuttle flight?" you just get a message she doesn't know the answer to the question (and worse, apparently doesn't think Bing will know it either.)

    I also wish their was a way she could be set or asked to provide the full first paragraph or more on a Wikipedia question then just the first sentence.

    Real world example I was at a loss to remember the arena where the Brooklyn Nets played at yesterday. So I asked Alexa to Wikipedia Brooklyn Nets and all I got as a short answer about them being a professional NBA team based in Brooklyn. Had there been a way to keep her talking I'm sure it would have soon mentioned they play in the Barclay's center.
     
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  9. cr6

    cr6 Super Moderator
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    Yeah, it it's limited in that aspect and adding Google search support would be huge. The fact that they recently added Google Calendar support gives me hope that future Google search, Gmail, as well as continued third party app support will continue to grow. I'm simply amazed at how many significant updates this device has received since launching. Impressive.

    S5 tap'n
     
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  10. Lindy Lee

    Lindy Lee Member

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    BirdOPrey, when Alexa finishes reading the Wikipedia first lines, just say, "Alexa, tell me more." and she will continue.
     
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  11. BirdOPrey5

    BirdOPrey5 New Member

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    Oh wow, that is great- thank you!
     
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  12. BirdOPrey5

    BirdOPrey5 New Member

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    Just in case anyone didn't notice the invite-only period is over and Echo's are now being sold like any other product.
     
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