Echo Dot (2nd Generation)

Amazon's assistant w/ improved voice recognition and design

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I'm impressed with how the Alexa platform has grown but Amazon needs to build better discovery of Skills. At the very least, please offer a permalink to Skills on the web. ๐Ÿ™
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@rrhoover shouldn't there be a producthunt list for that :)
@rrhoover the app needs some work too.
Love Amazon's strategy on this product. I have Echo for Kitchen (music, IoT, timer, etc). Tap for Pool (music), now 6 Dots on the way for (IoT/Home Automation) in most rooms. The skills keep you engaged to using the product. Think they should have put a LED clock on the dots though.
@richardginsberg meanwhile, they want to implement Alexa directly in other brands' speakers. It seems a bit contradictory to me -- what do you think?
@vnallatamby Alexa is the real product. Echo/Tap/Dot/Fire are just the delivery vehicles. Hardware always becomes a commodity business. Few have mastered scale and logistics to make a longstanding hardware franchise with decent margins. So it makes sense that they start opening up Alexa to 3rd party. In theory Amazon should be able to generate more revenue from the adoption of voice based eCommerce and affiliate commissions (i.e. Ordering Uber or Pizza). It wouldn't shock me if the Amazon Alexa hardware products are discontinued in 3-5 years, if the low-brand 3rd party bring Alexa enabled products to a price point where it makes it difficult to invest further R&D and marketing. Just look at the flood of cheap Android based tablets. I see it as jettisoning rocket boosters after the fuel is spent. But, you never know, Amazon seems pretty comfortable with low margin/high volume
Serious, possibly silly question: is the Echo Dot a standalone device or does it require connection to the Echo to function? No brainer if standalone for only $50.
@ryan_haigh It's a standalone device. It has a small speaker for timers/alarms/ Alexa's responses etc but if you want to play music etc we'd recommend you connect it to an external speaker. Otherwise, the echo has built in room filling sound with its built in speakers.
@deanbryen excellent. Thanks a bunch!
Not to be negative but I can't figure out what is improved in the v2 vs the v1. Anybody?
For only $50 this is a must must have in other rooms. Ordering!
Update: Ordered. Cool that you can now order it from Amazon too (lol) before it was only from Alexa itself.