Amazon Echo - Siri thing from Amazon because their phone bombed


#624

I think the primary location for mine would be in the kitchen, recipes and basic lookup functionality. The camera might be nice but maybe not a deal breaker… I don’t think I’d be making calls on it but you never know if other family members might grab one.


#625

Yup, kitchen here as well. Easy recipe management/display would be a huge boon (although I have no idea how good a job the Show does of managing stored recipes), and the timer stuff also looks useful. No need here for photos, interactions, etc. But I’ve spent too much on tech recently and will have to hold off for a while.


#626

What’s kind of funny is I don’t normally do first gen or first year on many electronics but Echo stuff and streamers have been the exception.


#627

Does the Show have any kind of recipe application you could even use though?

Wouldn’t a tablet you can bring into your kitchen make a lot more sense? I just put my iPad on a stand when I cook and follow a recipe.


#628

Apparently the Show has a bunch of recipe-related skills, but I can’t say if any of them are any good.

And with the Show being a spendy $229 (for a new 2nd gen), a tablet is probably worth considering instead. Only thing a tablet would lack would be comparable Alexa integration.


#629

Grab a Fire tablet (or use one you have lying around) and a Show mode dock if you really want the Alexa integration.


#630

The ability to have Alexa not only talk you through the cooking steps but show them them and Alexa herself is not currently easily on the tablets. It’s generally more than a tablet with a louder speaker. And if get anything except Echo it should have Youtube. My desire is mostly for kitchen use, and my tablet, S2, just doesn’t work well for that.


#631

Ok but does the Show do that? So many of the skills I have tried don’t work or do the bare minimum.

The Paprika recipe manager app is awesome on tablets. Timers, highlights where you are, etc.


#632

Yes it will play YouTube, through the Firefox browser though.

Main advantage of the Show is that it has a great speaker, even better than the Echo.


#633

Well I don’t have a smart screen yet but these screens are supposed to be designed with voice control in mind. The tablets they just sort of added some of that later. The big draw is Google Assistant which includes visual recipes, better mics, better speakers as well as other features. Obviously the Echo is not using the same thing but they’re competing in the same place.

250 is a little steep for what I want, but I’ve seen the kitchen use on YouTube. It looks very promising.


#634

That’s interesting. How does that work? “Are you done chopping the carrots yet? What’s taking you? Humans are so inferior!”

I love the idea of someone telling me what to do when I’m cooking, but I don’t get how something talking to me works.


#635

This was Google Home Hub but they’re all kind of gearing for the same thing or near the same thing anyway.


#636

Interesting. I think she did a lot of prep steps off camera, but I did like how when she had Google giving her a list of steps. She could get a step, do it, and ask for the next step. The problem is I think I’d say something like, “Google, I just chopped the carrots and broccoli, what do I do next for my stir fry” and I’d stump it.

Really though, a tablet on a stand with written list seems like it would have done just as well. It’s just as easy to glance at a tablet as it is to verbalize a question and maybe not have it understand me.


#637

You could be right. There is a reason I haven’t forked 200~250 for these things, yet. My personal experience with the smart devices though is they get better over time. If they know the smart screens are being used in a certain way, I expect them improve on that. Skills are a hit or miss, and I don’t really like that set-up, much. We’ll see.

I liked what I saw here, just not fully sold yet. It’s got promise though.


#638

I love these things, but they haven’t hit the science fiction level of coolness I’d like. I want something closer to a real conversation. Alexa always disappoints.

If I was going to use one of these to cook a Thanksgiving dinner, I’d ask it to recommend a turkey size based on the number of guests, give me nearby buying options for the turkey, ask it for recommendations for the rest of the dinner, and ask it to make me a shopping list. Stuff like that.

Then I’d ask for recipes, and an order in which I’d execute them. When it was time to make the green beans I’d say “Green Beans” and it would review the steps with me. “Did you get the fresh green beans like I recommended?” “Yes, Alexa.” “Good. Cut off the tips and then rinse them.”

Stuff like that. I don’t think it’s there yet.


#639

Not yet. But if the devices specialize, yeah we’ll wind up with more devices but then they could target, really target on stuff like that. Tablets, hey I like my S2, but I am sure everyone uses them for a lot of different things. I surf the net, play mobile games and watch videos when I am away. I find typing with one, even with a bluetooth keyboard to be the pits.


#640

Then you’re obviously doing it wrong (Apple joke, the device doesn’t have shortcomings, it must be you). But, if you don’t like typing with a Bluetooth keyboard it must have been the keyboard. Some great keyboards out there now, it’s like typing on a laptop.

This whole thing got me thinking of my general complaint with the smart speaker thing is the lack of apps. Skills don’t cut it. They need screens, like the Show, but then they need apps to use and manipulate data. Then you could have your recipe data combined with the speakers features. From what I have seen of the Show, the screen is nice for visualization, but you can’t interact with it enough. (I don’t have one just heard people talk about them on podcasts and watched videos of them, maybe that has gotten better?)


#641

It’s mostly the size. If I am typing on my keyboard, I’m traveling. So if I have my tablet, my phone, the surface or laptop, the last thing I will ever do is try typing on that tablet. If it’s a short trip, and I only take my phone and surface, I’ll probably just swype around on my phone rather than pull it out.

Yeah I don’t like skills. It took my mom about a dozen times to get Alexa to play KDOV for her since you have to access the skill, get in the skill, and then issue commands, something like that. It’s not seamless at all.

Now I don’t see myself paying 250 for a robust screen in the kitchen, but once it drops a little and they expand what these can do, I am thinking Google Home Hub. I like Alexa fine but I think Amazon is going to limit me for the way I envision this working.


#642

The google hub was selling for $99 on black friday, so I assume it’ll get back down to that price pretty quickly.


#643

Yeah it was, and not just the big sites online but the local stores too. I was very tempted but I can wait.

I almost got my sister one, but they only use one echo dot in the house at the moment. They’re concerned about privacy. I don’t blame them. I don’t have one in my office although I would like to due to privacy.

They keep their one dot in the kitchen though. I bet she would make it recipe and cooking centric too.