Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) Review

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Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) Specifications

Price: $49 / £49 / AU$79
Colors: Charcoal, Abyss Blue, Glacier White
Cut: 3.9 x 3.5 inches
Lester: 10.7 ounces
Connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 and 5 GHz)
Speaker: 1.73 inch front firing

There’s perhaps no device as synonymous with the smart home as the Amazon Echo Dot. The latest Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) is the best version of the Alexa-powered smart speaker yet, making any space more intuitive for under $50.

That said, based on its size, the Echo Dot is hands down one of the best smart speakers for a smaller bedroom or living space. The sound has been improved, but that’s not all. The 5th-gen Echo Dot also has two new smart home features: a built-in ambient and eero temperature sensor.

Although I prefer the added functionality of the Amazon Echo Dot with Clock (5th Gen), it’s easy to recommend the standard Echo Dot for freebies or just to expand your smart home. If you want to learn more about how the speaker works and performs, read the full Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) review below.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) price and availability

The Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) has been available since mid-October 2022 for $49 (£49, AU$79), the same price as the previous one. Amazon Echo Dot (4th Gen). It is available in three colors: Charcoal, Deep Sea Blue and Glacier White.

For $10 more, you can upgrade to the 5th Gen Echo Dot with Clock, which offers the same audio and smart home performance as the standard Echo Dot, but introduces a multifunctional LED display. This allows it to serve as a bedside alarm clock. Similarly, the new Echo Dot Kids Edition costs $59 / £64 / AU$99. The Kids Edition comes in a few fun animal prints and comes preloaded with parental controls.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

One important thing to keep in mind when buying an Echo Dot: Amazon regularly offers discounts on the Echo Dot or bundles it with other smart home products at promotional events. Be sure to follow our guide to Black Friday Deals and other Amazon Deals available now.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) review: Design and controls

The Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) design is virtually unchanged from the previous model. It’s still a palm-sized orb, wrapped in cloth with a flat bottom. The main difference is that the latest Echo Dot ditches the 3.5mm audio line, so you can no longer pair it to a louder sounding speaker.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

Otherwise, the Echo Dot looks clean and minimalist – it could be mistaken for modern decor at a glance. It helps that the controls are aligned on the top rather: there are volume controls, an Alexa action button and a mute button, which you can activate when you don’t want Alexa to listen to her wake word.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

You’ll know the microphone is muted if the light ring on the base of the speaker glows red. Alternatively, if the ring is blue, you know Alexa is actively listening. Our guide to Alexa Flashing Colors is good to keep handy if you never know what the Echo Dot is trying to tell you.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) review: Sound quality

Although it doesn’t look like Amazon has a lot of room to work with, it has increased the speaker size of the Echo Dot from 1.6 to 1.73 inches. The speakers are also claimed to deliver double the bass of the previous version, although there are no additional specs we can share or a way to verify this claim.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

Instead, I listened to the Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) alongside a 4 Gen Echo Dot to see if I could hear any improvement — and for the most part, I did. Elton John’s “Bennie and the Jets” beat better than I expected for a speaker of this size. It definitely offered a deeper vibe than the older version. The crooner’s voice also sounded a bit too forced on the older speaker, as if trying to overcompensate. On the 5th Gen Echo Dot, vocals sounded much more balanced.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

However, at the highest volume, speaker sound quality and bass performance deteriorate. That’s why the Echo Dot isn’t a whole-home audio solution. If you need something with more power, our favorite smart speaker for sound is the Sonos Onewhile the larger, $99 Amazon Echo (4th Gen) is also very good. Amazon’s smart speaker, the $199 Amazon Echo Studiois also an impressive choice.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) review: Smart Home and Alexa features

Of course, the Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) is made for more than just playing music. It is a vehicle for almost all best alexa skills, minus those that require video. This means you can voice calls with Alexa, get updates on your Amazon deliveries, set alarms, get weather reports, play interactive games and more. It takes care of everything Alexa Easter Eggs at Alexa Guarda security feature that sends you alerts when suspicious sounds are heard in your home.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

Amazon Alexa is always picking up new skills, not to mention new smart home integrations. Most best alexa-enabled devices can be controlled from commands sent by the Echo Dot, whether to unlock the front door smart lock or change the color of your Philips Hue lamps.

On Amazon Echo Dot (5th generation) in particular, an ambient temperature sensor is integrated. So without me having to ask, the temperature sensor readings could automatically trigger a routine to change the setting of my Amazon Smart Thermostat. Similarly, the motion detector (which is not new, but often forgotten) can automatically trigger one of my smart plugs when I go back to my room. as far as you know how to create an alexa smart home routinethere are different automations you can assign depending on what additional smart home devices you have.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

(Image credit: future)

The Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) now also features eero. It acts as a satellite for one of the best mesh router systems to extend your home’s Wi-Fi range. If you already have an eero host router, like the eeroPro 6e), the Echo Dot with Clock (5th Gen) can act as an extender device with up to 1,000 square feet of coverage at speeds up to 100 Mbps.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) review: Verdict

For most people, the Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) is one of the best smart home devices you can own. Best of all, it’s also one of the best cheap smart home devices out there, with more versatility than you’ll find at the same price. Only the Google Nest Mini (2nd Gen) is a truly comparable option for Google Home users, while the equally compact Apple HomePod mini has a louder sound, but costs double.

As for the price, I might recommend shelling out an extra $10 for the Echo Dot version with clock, especially if you plan on using the Alexa speaker somewhere to have the time at a glance is convenient. Otherwise, the Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen) is as complete as it looks.

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