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Amazon - Echo (1st generation) - Black-Front_Standard

Amazon - Echo (1st generation) - Black

Model: B00X4WHP5ESKU: 4747312

Customer rating

Rating 4.7 out of 5 stars with 7539 reviews

96%
would recommend to a friend

Customer ratings & reviews

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  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Solid Sound and Mic Quality. Google > Bing Search

    Posted
    nyy0420a
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    As a Google Home user I was excited to try its direct competitor, Amazon Echo, since a lot of people that I know have an Echo and are enjoying theirs so far. The setup process is very simple and requires you to download Alexa App for your mobile device. The Alexa App definitely needs more improvement as I found myself having to relaunch the app at times to reconnect the Echo to my wireless network. Alexa has bluetooth connectivity which is great for streaming music from my iPhone, something Google Home does not have currently. The mic is very sensitive which I like so I don't have to speak too loudly to wake the Echo up and it picks up voice from the far end of the living room; the Echo is located in the dining room. Sound quality is pretty good and music did not have too much distortion at higher volumes. The Echo's is more on the heavier side which I like cause I feel the build quality is good. The Echo is tall so the tall black cylinder stands out in my dining room table. I like the 360 speaker and mic design. Volume control can be adjusted by twisting the top upper ring which is simple enough. Amazon Echo uses Bing for querying answers to your questions and this is definitely where I think Echo takes a hit. There were quite a few simple questions I asked Echo that Google Home had no problem answering. Google search is the best, bar none. One of the bonuses of Amazon Echo is surely felt if you are a Amazon Prime member. For example, I asked Echo to check my order status for items I ordered on Amazon and it told me I had items out for delivery today. Also you can ask Echo what are today's deals on Amazon and it asks whether you want to buy the item it mentions. There is a lot of potential and more benefits for Amazon Prime customers. Overall I really enjoyed using the Amazon Echo and I am impressed with the design and build quality. Amazon's usage of Bing for searching is definitely lacking compared to Google. This is a solid complimentary assistant for Amazon Prime Members. Bluetooth is a plus for sure. PROS: Solid build and design quality. Good audio quality. Sensitive mic. Perfect for Amazon Prime Subscribers. CONS: Amazon Bing search is not nearly as good as Google. Alexa App needs improvement.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Very Nice Product for the Family

    Posted
    TechGeekDad
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    Amazon Echo Pros: 1.Amazing speakers and voice recognition. I can be 30 plus feet away and communicate with the Echo. 2. Speaker system in the unit is much nicer then anticipated. I compare it with the UEBoom device. 3. The Amazon Echo App is very easy to manage and add in different functions to access. So many different programed commands with the unit that you will not even know where to begin. 4. The design of the unit is very nice. Solid from top to bottom. Quick summary of pros: If you are looking for a unit to respond quickly to the weather, playlists, talk radio, and reading of non-audio books back to you. You will love this unit. I was not a believer prior to purchasing the device. Alexa is much more then just a novelty. Cons: 1. The amazon Echo is stationary. If you unplug the unit you have to take the cable with you to plug the unit in the new place. So if you want the unit on a deck or a back yard table make sure you have an extension cord or an outdoor plug. 2. If you don't subscribe to Amazon Prime then half of the units greatest options are nonexistent. With Amazon prime you can establish or use preexisting playlist from the Amazon music store. Also, if you have books you have purchased through amazon kindle app you can pull up those books on the Echo and have them played back to you. You can use Spotify as a secondary option but it require addition work on your part to set up playlists. 3. The voice commands are clumsy. What I mean by this is; you have to ask the question exactly like it says in the echo app. Some examples are, "Alexa, What is the weather like in Manchester England?", "Alexa, ask PGA tour for the round leader.", or "Alexa play the best of the 90's play list from Amazon Music?". If you miss the ask blank. She will come back with I don't understand the question. Cons summary: These may not seem to be a big deal but not having prime or not remembering the commands exactly will limit the Echo's capacity. The unit is meant to simply your life not make if more difficult for you to remember robotic questions. Overall; If you have or plan to subscribe to Amazon Prime, then this unit will provide you with some very nice simple moments. My family does and the Echo is used everyday from playing music from amazon prime, to finding out the weather, to seeing if our commute to work has any traffic to worry about. If 179.99 is not a lot of money to you for a more hands free toy. Then this is the unit for you. I hope this helps.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great for music and a gateway to home automation

    Posted
    Ryan
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    Before the Echo we played music often for our toddler via Pandora on the Amazon Firestick. I am generally not an early adopter for the newest technology, but with a 95% music use case in mind and to experiment I pulled the trigger and bought one. Within a week I subscribed to the single-device option for Amazon Music Unlimited at a cost of 3.99/month after a free 30-day trial. Now we rarely use Pandora due to the expansive Amazon selection. I also upgraded to a smart thermostat and am looking into Philips Hue Color lighting. My experience has been positive enough to also buy an Echo Dot with Harman-Kardon Onyx Mini speaker for my parents. While great, however, there are opportunities for improvement: 1. Sometimes Alexa fails to find a selection which it succeeded at before. I made sure my command was identical and clear. 2. The suite of skills is weak and mostly pointless. I only use the news flash, weather, and traffic. 3. Search functionality for facts/answers is limited and based on reviews is likely worse than Google Home. 4. There is no integration with the Firestick/ Fire TV which is surprising. Currently one must buy a Logitech Harmony hub to do so. 5. Alexa struggles to find certain classical pieces even though I have confirmed them to be available on Amazon Music. Part of the problem might be the many versions which exist for a given piece as well as the distinction between composer and performing artist. Overall, I would recommend this product especially for those who listen to a lot of music, but don't expect perfection quite yet!

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Oh Alexa, you've spoiled me..

    Posted
    dev0
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    I purchased the Amazon Echo to augment my other smart devices. Boy, has it made me lazy. Gone are the days when I'd have to stretch my arm out ALLLLLL the way to the lamp on my nightstand to turn it off. The days of pulling out my smart phone and setting my alarm for the next morning are also gone. Now, a simple "Alexa, turn off my nightstand" and "Alexa, set my alarm for 8:30am" is all I need. Even walking through my living room, I find myself saying "Alexa, turn on the kitchen lights" and "Alexa, play my favorites playlist." You see, it's addicting, and having a wireless speaker that plays music AND controls your life with simple voice commands means you end up buying two. I started with one in my living room but found that I had to yell to turn off said nightstand lamp or turn the thermostat down.... so I bought another. I have now repositioned the one in my living room so that it can hear me when I walk in from the garage, and added the one in my bedroom, which can hear me from the entry or my bathroom. Now, if only she could automate the rest of my life. Amazon is working on it though - I receive weekly emails about new things you can do with Echo.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    So far, so good, with a couple of caveats!

    Posted
    StarBender
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    I opted for the Echo over the Dot because of the promise of a better sounding speaker, and because I planned to add Dots to my environment later to create a system of assistants. The speaker sound is not great, but it's not the worst I've heard. I've also recently discovered how to alter the bass and treble volume to tailor the sound a bit. The Echo was easy to set up, and is really easy to use. I especially like the ability to create a shopping list (although I wish I could create more than one list without adding apps), and to easily integrate my Google Calendar. I'm currently exploring other features and "skills" for the system, some of which are very entertaining and useful. One disappointment is the limitation of the near-field voice recognition range. Alexa may be always listening, but her ears don't seem to be very good. If I'm more than 15-20 feet or one room away (with not walls between us) she usually doesn't pick up my commands.That not withstanding, she recognizes commands very well, and is very pleasant to interact with. Another issue I discovered is that in order for the echo to access your Spotify music service at all, you have to subscribe to the premium version. I can understand that, given the current propensity for most online services to find ways to require you to subscribe to their premium services in order to really enjoy them. However, with Amazon Music you can access the free version and their premium Amazon Prime version. In the area of smart home capability, I purchased a Philips Hue starter kit with a hub and a couple of smart lights, and was able to get them set up in the app very easily. Alexa does a great job of controlling them for us, but I am disappointed that the only place I can find additional bulbs seems to be online where I have to pay for shipping in addition to tax. Apparently the retailers (Best Buy, Walmart, Home Depot, etc.) haven't seen enough of a demand for them to justify restocking them after their initial quantities were exhausted. I'll be adding other devices as time progresses, and expect to be pleased with the results.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Getting Better

    Posted
    tyostrike
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    Having realistic expectations is a must with the Echo. I had thought the AI would be much better than it is. Sometimes you need to say something three times for Alexa to find it. For example if you ask her to play a specific song by a specific artist the first two times she will say there is no song by that particular artist but on the third attempt she finds it. This is with voice training complete mind you. I purchased three echos to use as a starter system to play music on each floor of my house. They did not support whole house play at first but due to high demand they now have a group setting so you can play music simultaneously on all your echos. Be warned though if you ask Alexa to play your group (multiple echos) you cannot play all your devises at once using Spotify for example. Verbally asking Alexa to play the entire group only allows play from amazon music. The Alexa app needs some work but is fairly easy to navigate. I feel I’m pretty tech savvy so for those who aren’t just take some time to browse through the app on your phone. You need to enable skills in order to get responses to certain questions which to me is a big draw back. I think most have the intention of buying the Echo, setting it up, and asking it anything and getting a response without all the extra setup. Remembering specific phrases to get an exact response can be a bit of a hassle. I gave it four stars because it works for playing most music through my whole house without breaking the bank. I think there is still a lot of improvements that could be made and it seems Amazons priority isn’t necessarily the Echo. From reviews I’ve read the request to play music on multiple devices was something people were asking for since the products release. I was able to pick them up when they were in sale but to be honest if I would have paid full price I would have returned all three and saved my money. Wait until they go on sale and then you can justify some of the shortfalls of the product.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Can't wait to see where it gets better.

    Posted
    Zcarp
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    First and foremost the Echo is a good Bluetooth/connected speaker. It's no Sonos but I wasn't expecting it to be. It's really cool to ask her questions like you would a real person and get some good results. "When is the cubs game/how are they doing" and "What are show times for Star Trek: Beyond" yielded great results. To be honest though that novelty while very good and consistent wears off a little. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone who hasn't invested in smart home tech because that is where the Echo shines. I currently have an Ecobee3, Phillips Hue, Sonos, August lock, and Harmony Hub. Right now the Echo works with Hue, Sonos, and Ecobee3 with the Harmony Hub being tested currently. There is no way to make the August work but there are ways to make other things work using apps like IFTT and Yonomi. I suggest anyone who wants one of these google those two apps to see some of the amazing things you can do with this awesome little device. I can turn on and off my lights, turn on and off my different activities with Harmony, play music, lower or raise the temperature and get basic info off the web. It's really cool and we are closer to Star Trek than ever. It is worth the money if you want to talk to your house. I love it. There are some failings. It doesn't understand some complex wordy questions while others it has no problem with. The list of compatible devices are limited but with those two apps I spoke of, IFTT and Yonomi that list is greatly increased, and the "skills' you can get aren't good at all. Limited and poor. But the potential is there and it looks like Amazon is working on it.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    This is great except for one minor problem

    Posted
    SPiazzo
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    The echo has a small problem in that it is a blue tooth receiver only. You can blue tooth your devises to it, tablet , phone ,or other devices. It would be better if you could connect it to a good quality stereo receiver that enable blue tooth. The dot can be connect to blue tooth speakers or blue tooth capable audio receivers. The Dot does have a small speaker in it so if it is not connected you can still use it. The problem with the dot is if you use the included 3.5 mm audio jack it disable the internal speaker. This means you have to have the audio component on to hear the Dot. However the blue tooth connection on the Dot works great. I own a Marantz AV receiver with blue tooth. I tell Alexa to connect and it automatically turns on the receiver, set it to the correct input and is ready to play music or any other audio I want to listen to through the Dot. When I tell Alexa to disconnect it turns of the receiver and switches back to the internal speaker. If you are buying an echo device for a high quality music server using Amazon music then you want an echo Dot.If you want to listen to average sounding speaker that you can place just about any where in your house the Echo is a great product.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Easy to use and fun, but limited appeal

    Posted
    callmeageeth
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member
    • Top 250 ContributorTop 250 Contributor

    I have both Google Home and Amazon Echo. I also have a Harmony Hub and several smart home devices. I love the smart home integration and once you activate lights and your entertainment center with your voice, good luck going back. For now, the Echo has better integration with my smart home, but once Google Home catches up, I will be switching to Google for the sole reason I subscribe to Google Play Music. But to be honest all of these devices have limited uses and the "fun" or "cool" appeal wears off soon. It's fun to ask Alexa questions or ask her to tell you a joke, but that gets old quick. It's also cool to order something from Amazon, but I rarely do so because I like to look at what I'm ordering. The sound quality is passable for a small speaker. I prefer to send music to my receiver through other means (i.e. Google Home and Chromecast Audio). At the end of the day, it's a fun device to have that provides some useful "skills" (ordering Dominos is cool, but I've only done it once) and games (I like Jeopardy) but it's true usefulness is its ability to be the voice hub for your smart home, if you're interested in having one...

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Excellent for some uses, but a bit clunky at times

    Posted
    Zukester
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    My primary reason for purchasing this was to control my new smart home devices. In particular, our Phillips Hue lights. Works great for off/on and dimming at a percentage but can't get the colors and scenes to work. Has to be SO exact with the naming of the lights and wording when you speak to Alexa. Also, making lists is JUST a shopping list. It would be great if I could add to an Amazon wish list instead! Seems like a natural!? Great for checking weather, sports and such. Playing music is hit or miss with my Prime account... to REALLy get everything, you apparently have to have the monthly fee enabled "unlimited" feature. Example: I can listen to the Police or Foo Fighters, but no Led Zeppelin - really??? Then it just tries to "sell you" the upgrade when you ask it to play something it can't. That's pretty annoying. Looking forward to Apple's version of this. More expensive and still many months away, but since I have an Apple Music account and it will play MY playlists! The Alex Echo was a great price though and a good starting home hub speaker.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great product, but must have Amazon Music

    Posted
    RicMelendez
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    We actually bought this Echo, after I had bought a couple of them for the house. I love the convenience of uttering commands and Alexa responding to them within seconds. Set up was easy, but you must get the accompanying app so you can complete the setup. While the app does have some neat features, I don’t really use it much. The other thing is that to be able to listen to unlimited music from Amazon, you have to get a subscription, which is like $4 or so. But you can always pair your own phone and play your own playlists from it. Otherwise, you get a limited selection from the Amazon library. There are other features that Alexa will do for you, like order supplies from Amazon, or tell you the weather or the Broncos game score, but those are just gimmicks, in my opinion. The neat thing for me is just being able to ask Alexa to play my favorite genre of music, and she’ll find a station for me in a matter of seconds. I paid around $90 for it, and also applied some of my B.B. points, so I got it for around $80, which I think it’s a fair value.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Cool toy that still needs improvements

    Posted
    aVeryNiceDUDE
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    My second Alexa (I refuse to call it echo). This little toy wakes me up every morning and together with her little sister help me avoid burning my food, stay up to date with news, play my favorite music, control Hue Lights, remember things, and read. I slowly grew attached to Alexa and now it's a part of my life that I probably cannot live without. The one thing that I don't do with it is shopping (sorry Amazon) and I shop a lot. I find it cumbersome and unintuitive. Perhaps you can use it to reorder things that you are already familiar with. The sound quality is good enough. Every morning Alexa plays some upbeat music to jump start my day. It's not as good as my UE Megaboom; it lacks bass. Granted, not that many people would expect audiophile music quality from Alexa anyways. The problem with Alexa is still its rather disappointing app selection--both quality and quantity. But I guess the few goods one still imo justify a purchase. My advice is to get one and try it out for a couple of weeks. If it grows on you, keep it. If not, say bye. Alexa won't be sad at all.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Limited use, but comes in handy

    Posted
    tinizzle
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    We've found a few very nice features in Alexa that we have in constant rotation (playing music, alarms, weather updates, sync with smart outlets) but outside of that have not really explored much more. Amazon does send out regular updates about new features you can try with Alexa so anyone open-minded enough to make the most of their Echo will surely get a lot of use from it. The sound is enough to fill our apartment and it syncs well with speakers in other rooms as well. We have an Echo Dot and it is simple to play music in all rooms simultaneously using the "play everywhere" function. The sound quality on the full sized Echo is much better than that of that Dot which sounds somewhat hollow. Cannot compare to Google Home but I Alexa does not have much of a search function unless you have a skill installed for a specific topic. If you have a Prime account or Fire TV to sync with, it's easy to recommend an Echo to take advantage of the Amazon ecosystem.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    One step closer to Jarvis

    Posted
    Jimmy
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    I'm a gadget guy and I've been watching this product for a while. I've read and read about the capabilities and finally decided to pull the trigger when I saw it on the shelf. It's been about 3 weeks now and I've learned a lot of the features. Alexa can tell you the forecast, your commute, and even some dad jokes. The sound quality is much better than most of my other Bluetooth speakers but she has to be plugged in all the time, no internal battery with this model. Right now it seems like more of a novelty in my kitchen but I plan on adding some home automation to get my money's worth. I don't think you'll be disappointed with the hardware or AI but it is difficult to add extra capabilities or "skills" through the necessary app because you have to scroll through all of them sequentially. The developers should add categories or a search function by capability. Last I checked there were 2 other models will the same AI capabilities and at lower price points. Read some more reviews and articles and find the one you can justify dropping $100+ on. You'll like it!

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Took me some time to get my $$$ worth

    Posted
    EDtheITguy
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    Initially I purchased this solely for the purchase of controlling Lutron lights. However, after being @ a friends house for a BBQ and watching them use this for music, I decided to give it a try to see if it could replace my Sonos. It can't, however, I've found that I'm much more likely to play Spotify through this using voice controls if I'm in and out of a room for a shorter period of time and not near a Sonos to hit play/too busy to pull the phone out for Sonos app. This thing has also become more powerful as more IoT devices and services integrate with Echo or IFTTT. There is a TREMENDOUS amount of potential... give it a try and spend at least a week getting to know Alexa. You won't be sorry.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good but not awesome

    Posted
    DonC
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    I thought this would have a better sound than the Google Home Assistant based on price ($50 more when not on sale) and description of speaker. Ran the two side by side and I thought the Google Home had a better sound. Neither one is a main speaker in my room but sometimes it is easier to just ask them to play a station on Pandora or Radio than going to the main sound system. As for what Alexa can and can't do...that is tough to say since we don't have any smart devices in the house at that moment. It works well for quick weather, news and traffic reports but not so good for a free-form question. Google was more intuitive and better at understanding the question. With Alexa, if you have not downloaded the "skill" then there is a chance that she won't understand. Still, she is very good at keeping track of shopping lists and at some point I will add smart lights, thermostats, garage door opener, etc. to the house so hopefully the convenience will make things better.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Home Automation is Here!

    Posted
    ChazInColorado
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    I waited a while before going with Amazon to start automating my home. I had considered Google Home, but since I wanted to have multiple rooms linked, it was much cheaper to go the Echo route since the Dot was only $40/each on sale. It has more after-market apps and seems to be integrated into more home automation systems (lights, TVs, alarm systems, etc.) than Google Home. It is also much sleeker and attractive to have sitting in your living room than Google. It is a bit of a novelty at the moment but is quickly becoming an integral part of our house. I was a little disappointed in the pricing ($140 on sale) since the Echo Dot, as I mentioned, was only $40 and does everything the Echo does, minus a better speaker. The Dot does have a 3.5mm output jack, so you can hook it up to a sound system or Bluetooth speaker. So, if you do not use your Echo to listen to music, it was a little overkill for the price.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    This is an awesome purchase

    Posted
    Jetsetter79
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
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    I bought this as a guft for my family for Christmas and I think it has great potential for future next gen personal assistance. My Aunt absolutely loves it and it and she is a business owner and she uses it to keep up on stock quotes and knowing what her scheduled is for the rest of the day. my uncle uses it for sports updates and more... I know its new technology so I think it definitely worth the money but still can be a better AI in the future. I do wish that Alexa gave you time answer the questions back on certain skills like knock knock jokes, riddles and more...instead she tells you the whole joke without more interaction from the user. I will say i am still pleased from everside but ill be honest i think google home does have some abilities that alexa doesnt but I am still Amazon echo hands down and will be waiting for the next gen Amazon Echo to see where it goes. I also will purchase another one soon for myself.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Better sound than the Dot

    Posted
    Customer
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
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    Better sound than the Echo Dot (or louder, at least), but not sure it's $50-$100 better. It's also a lot larger and more conspicuous. The second generation looks like it's a little smaller. I wish I had known a new version was coming out soon when I bought mine. I'd definitely go with the second generation over this. It can do some useful things like playing music and controlling Hue lights or a Harmony Hub to pause Netflix on your TV when you have to take a bathroom break, but mostly it seems more of a fun toy than something you need to have. It's very particular about the phrasing you use, especially for choosing different Hue lighting "Scenes", so until I memorized the exact wording to use, it was often easier to just use the Hue app on my phone. That's more a criticism of the Hue skill than the Echo hardware itself, but the Echo isn't really very useful without its skills.

    No, I would not recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Very useful and a lot of fun!

    Posted
    AimKep
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    We are having a lot of fun with the Echo. Purchased for my boyfriend for Christmas. We've bought a couple of the smart outlets, and it's very convenient to say "Gameroom on" and have the lights and fireplace all come on without having to turn everything on, as our hands are often full when entering the gameroom. Also have it connected to Fitbit, so if I don't have my phone and the Fitbit is charging, I can just ask how I'm doing. Good weather reports and news briefs, and the best part is you can just say, "Stop" when you don't want to hear any more. Convenient saying aloud an item for a grocery or to-do list, then having it on your phone when you get to the store. We've also enjoyed the music (have it connected to speakers in the living room). Only drawback is it can't answer a lot of things. One example, I asked when the new Bladerunner was going to come out, and it could only give me info on the original show.

    I would recommend this to a friend