In 2020, Amazon, Google and Apple are all making good smart speakers. Competition among these tech giants motivates them to keep up. Amazon popularized smart speakers with originalAnd this Voice assistant, but today you have many options, each with its own pros and cons.
So how do you choose the best smart speaker for your needs? Well, the main differences come largely to hardware size, price, and audio quality. If you don’t need a lot of oomph from your music and you’re good with low audio quality, you can save money and get the same smart in a small speaker.
All of your options include a lot of multi-room audio and you turn on the lights, play music, ask a question, set with reminders and simple voice commands. If this sounds good to you, then it may be time to promote this growing range of devices and buy a smart speaker.
If you have an affinity for one of those brands in particular, then your job of choosing a speaker is easy.Sample. Here is one . If you want a Siri-capable smart speaker, the $ 350 Apple HomePod is your only option, but the good news is that it has great audio quality, which makes listening to music very enjoyable.
If you are platform-agnostic, and do not need to choose between Alexa or Google, the range of options may seem intimidating at first. But choosing the best smart speaker can be easy if you know what you are looking for. Here are our thoughts.
A growing crowd of smart speakers is ready for your orders
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Note that the products discussed here are independently chosen by our editors.
Ben Fox Rubin / Tips Clear
Naming the best smart speaker is really tough these days. Both Google and Amazon have very capable smart speakers at affordable prices. If you don’t want to deal with the kitty-gritti of the category and just want to try the smart speakers, then get the 3G gen Echo Dot. Amazon’s voice assistant has more capabilities than Google Assistant and Apple’s Siri.
The third-generation Amazon Echo Dot looks better than previous versions and still costs just $ 50. In addition, there is a $ 60 version with a practical LED clock for timers, temperatures and alarms. Echo Dot offers all digital assistants smart as more expensive Echo devices. You sacrifice some audio quality for size and price, but it plugs into your own speaker, allowing you to easily make that difference. Read the Amazon Echo Dot review.
Sara Tew / Tips Clear
The $ 200 Sonos One allows you to pair two units to play stereo sound or multiroom audio, but a single speaker has amazing sound playing a variety of music styles and includes other smart with premium sound quality Speakers such as Google Home are priced much lower than Max and Apple HomePod.
Better yet, Sonos One has both Alexa and Google Assistant built in – just choose the one you want to use for your voice commands during setup. In addition, Sonos has Apple’s AirPlay 2 so you can control it with any Siri-enabled device, including your iPhone.
Add it and the Sonos One is a great sounding, reasonably priced smart speaker that can fit Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri’s nearby homes. It is a difficult pitch. Read the review of Sonos One.
James Martin / Tips Clear
Amazon used to be the undisputed ruler of the smart speaker world, but Google has done a commendable job of capturing its digital assistant in the sound race. At this point, the two companies – Amazon Echo Dot or Google Nest Mini – are expected to have a haircut in the split between the lowest-priced smart devices. The dot is still our favorite overall, but by a small margin.
Google Assistant now has the same capabilities as Alexa, making the $ 50 Google Nest Mini a solid alternative to the Amazon Echo Dot in your search to find the best smart speakers. Also, Google Assistant is a slightly more clever voice assistant than Alexa. If you can’t remember the exact name of your smart home devices and Google’s grouped commands, it more flexibly responds to voice commands, called routines, than similar routines from Amazon for more smart devices. To work with. Google Assistant can recognize multiple voices, so if you ask each one about your calendar it will give you and your husband different answers, although Alexa can now do so as well.
Overall, Google still has helpful intelligence, and the Google Nest Mini is a great, low-cost way to take advantage of those smart. Read Google Nest Mini Review.
Chris Monroe / Tips Clear
Deciding which assistant you want at the center of your smart home is a tough call. Both Alexa and Google Assistant work with many devices. Both help you to organize and control easily. While Google Assistant is a bit slick, Alexa works with more smart home devices and makes setup easier with voice commands.
Finally, we’ll give Smart-Home an edge in the smart speaker category thanks to Alexa and Amazon for the $ 150 Echo Plus. Alexa can send alerts if your smart speaker has glass breaking or smoke detector blurring. The Echo Plus combines the usual Alexa Smart with a speaker that sounds good and has a smart-home hub built into it so you can sync your small sensors with it instead of needing to buy more gear. Read the Amazon Echo Plus review.
Tyler Lizenby / Tips Clear
Siri’s first smart speaker plays the sound in the room in which you are playing all genres of music. Its sound quality beats the Sonos One and even according to the price of Google Home Max. Thanks to Siri, you can use an Apple HomePod to control your Smart Home products with the volume of your voice, ask for help such as other smart speakers you come to your smartphone and answer phone calls Will do with
HomePod is more limited than the rest, though. You can only play music from Apple’s music service with voice commands. Other smart speakers provide you with some popular streaming options like Pandora or Spotify. For Smart Home, you are limited to devices that work with HomeKit, Apple’s smart home platform. So HomePod has some limitations that the rest do not have, but it doesn’t matter to you if you have already invested in Apple products and only want good sound quality. Read Apple HomePod review.
Best portable smart speaker
Sara Tew / Tips Clear
Given the wide array of smart speakers, it is surprising that some are portable. Luckily, the JBL 20 checks all the right boxes to qualify as a good smart speaker, and is battery-powered. It has decent battery life and solid sound quality, and has a Google Assistant, built like the Google Nest Mini.
Even better, the wireless speaker is completely waterproof, allowing you to play music outside, and connect to your home Wi-Fi network, or you can stream audio via your phone’s Bluetooth. $ 200 is a bit expensive. It is often on sale for $ 150 and is currently sold out, but JBL representatives assured us that it will be back soon.
Meanwhile, the similar JBL 10 is a solid and inexpensive, if slightly less impressive, alternative. Read JBL 20 Review.
Those smart speakers are our favorites, but you still have a lot of other options if you’re looking for something specific. Read our breakdown ofIf you want to learn the pros and cons of each and decide by platform.
Note that neither originalNor original An appearance was made above because you can get similar capabilities for less with smaller (dot and mini) versions. Said, if you want a smart speaker that divides the difference between affordability and premium sound, both are still solid choices.
If you always like the idea of helping to listen, but want something more visual, check us out. The smart display essentially combines a smart speaker with a touchscreen so you can watch videos, make video calls on YouTube, And control your smart home gadgets with one touch. Both Amazon and Google have several options in this growing smart display category of smart home technology.
There are many, And an increasing number of . Check it out or If you want Alexa in a portable body. If you want a portable smart speaker with Google Assistant, there is another compact option. You can also buy from a company called Add-on If you want to make your Google or Amazon smart speaker portable.
Finallyuses it . If you are a Windows fan then this is sufficiently capable, but otherwise not enough to stand out from the crowd. Samsung is also a very delayed smart speaker, .
Find out what platform or features you like, and you should be able to quickly narrow down your options and find the best smart speaker for you and your family.
New products are updated regularly as we review them.