Amazon Echo - Siri thing from Amazon because their phone bombed


I’ll have to test that later. I believe it is using the Google Home app, which you have to install on your phone anyway because you can’t set it up without it.



Thanks @Nesrie! Very nice write-up.

We’re already more a google house (3 Minis, Android phones) than Alexa. I wouldn’t need it as a music speaker, because a Chromecast Audio + speakers serves that function for the kitchen. The recipes and multiple, name-able timers is nice. $100 nice? Not sure. (and why can’t they add multiple, name-able timers to the Home Mini???)



I’ve been using the free version and it seems to support the Alexa sharing just fine. It works really well. I am on ios, though I’m not sure that makes any difference in what offers on the backend to sync my Alexa Shopping list to



I may end up giving that a try. It doesn’t have Google assistant support yet, so I don’t know how well it works with Android phones. I like being able to say “add X to my shopping list”.



Which is why I want something to talk to in my car. I don’t even drive that much but the number of times i have a thought, something I need, and then twenty minutes of paying attention to what the hell everyone else on the road is doing I forget is somewhat frequent. I don’t want to suck the batteries of my phone too either but add whatever to calendar, shopping list, reminder… in car would be great and while cooking too… just used the last of my chili powder, add it to the list.



I have no idea why I would ever use this feature but hey you never know.



We have some international guests who struggle a bit with English and of course, being Americans, none of us here know another language. If this really worked it would be handy for us once in a great while.



Multigenerational households where the kids don’t speak the same native language as the grandparents.



I wonder how good this has to be before it’s better than broken english / other language pidgin that gets spoken around the house already.

I’m trying to imagine my grandfather being convinced to talk to and listen to a machine.



I stood in line at a bank once and watched a Chinese woman use some app on her phone as a translator with the teller. It was super slow and awkward, but it worked. If some random, low-budget app works well in situations like that, I’m guessing dedicated devices like this one will eventually be a hit.



Well, the real question there is that they’re different applications. It’s useful for transactions, where the scope of the conversation is limited, and there’s a specific goal. If speaking to, e.g. grandparents, the conversation is probably going to be more general, and so it may be harder and more exhausting to mediate that through a machine.

(Obligatory joke that it could just say “You’ve gained weight. You’re too skinny. Do you have a girlfriend? When are you having a baby? Are you eating enough” and cover 90% of grandparent use cases.)



I don’t personally have a use for this, but it’s one step closer to Star Trek technology and that’s really fucking cool.



It’s a Google Assistant feature, not Google Home-specific. Makes a lot more sense on your phone.



I’ve never managed to get Google’s live translation to work for very long on my phone. It always seems to conk out after less than a minute. Could be I’ve just had bad reception everywhere I’ve tried it.



They’re calling it an interpreter mode for Google Home. I didn’t write the article or choose to advertise the feature as they did.



Right, they demoed it on the google home hub with a concierge speaking Chinese. That’s a very specific use-case, it still makes more sense on your phone.




So is this Echo thing what I need if I want to listen to Audible audiobooks in my car hands-free? I’d like to be able to listen to a book and say “pause” without reaching for my phone, or especially to say “go back” 45 seconds without fumbling for a phone while driving.

I’ve tried the Alexa app for iPhone, but it seems to require you to push a button every time you want to ask Alexa something. That’s NOT what I want.

If Echo is the thing I want, is it all I need to play my audiobooks? Do I have to pair it with my iPhone somehow?

Many Google searches, and I’m still not sure how this works. Thanks in advance.



If you have an iPhone, Siri is what you want. Don’t know if it actually works for Audible though.

Alternatively, get an Amazon tablet or Android phone.



Unfortunately, Siri doesn’t work with Audible. She’ll open the app, but that’s it. I need a voice interface that pauses and rewinds. It’s not safe to reach for the phone to rewind an audiobook while driving.

My guess is an Echo speaker, paired with my iPhone as a WiFi hotspot, might do the trick. But I’m not sure.