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I've owned an Amazon Echo for nearly a year now — here are my 19 favorite features (AMZN)

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amazon echoI activated my Amazon Echo for the first time last December. It's quickly become one of my favorite tech gadgets ever.

Google unveiled a similar device on Tuesday, called Home, but Echo is the device it's trying to emulate. Amazon's speaker, which responds to either "Alexa" or "Amazon," is extremely quick to respond and understands commands much better than anything else I've used.

Thanks to its excellent audio system, with seven microphones for listening and a 360º omni-directional audio grille for speaking, Amazon Echo works exceedingly well wherever I am in my home. I can hear it — and it can hear me — perfectly.

Amazon Echo has completely transformed the way I live in my apartment. There's just so much you can do with Echo. Take a look.

SEE ALSO: Google just unveiled its newest major product: the Google Home speaker

"Alexa, what time is it?"

Honestly, the best use cases for Amazon Echo are the simplest ones. With the Echo, I don't need to bother searching for my phone just to get the time — you can ask for the time from anywhere in your house and get the answer immediately. It's a small thing, but it totally makes a difference when you're rushing in the morning.



"Alexa, how's the weather outside today?"

Again, it's a simple task, but it's way quicker and better than pulling out your phone and opening your favorite weather app. Amazon Echo will not only tell you the current temperature, but also the expected high and low temperatures throughout the day, and other conditions such as clouds and rain.



"Alexa, set a timer for 10 minutes."

Amazon Echo is the perfect cooking or baking companion because it's totally hands-free. When the timer's up, a radar-like ping will sound until you say "Alexa, stop."



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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