Echo Dot

(AMAZON)

Amazon Echo Dot has been dominating the smart home assistant market, but Google’s recently released Google Home Mini is catching up to competition. This guide breaks down the similarities in differences between these smart home devices, so you can pick the right fit for your house.

Price

The Amazon Echo Dot and Google Home Mini are competitively priced, with the Dot and Mini coming in at $50 and $49 respectively. Both smart home devices are currently on sale, bringing the price for each down to $30.

Sound Quality

One of the bigger differences between Amazon Echo Dot and Google Home Mini is the speaker. The Echo Dot is best used as a way to wirelessly connect separate speakers throughout your home that can be controlled with Alexa (the Echo Dot’s smart assistant). The Google Home Mini has a 1.57 inch driver (compared to the 0.6 inch Echo Dot driver ), and provides 360-degree sound, essentially serving as a standalone speaker.

Compatibility

In terms of compatibility, the Echo Dot currently has an advantage. Since the device has been around longer, Amazon has built out a strong line of smart home products and partnerships, including the Nest Learning Thermostat and Philips Hue Lighting. However, Alexa-partnering products like Philips Hue Lighting are increasingly compatible with Google Assistant.

The Google Home Mini is building out compatibility, and currently supports wireless connections via Chromecast without physical inputs. The Echo Dot provides another option, with a 3.5mm jack that allows it to hook up with speakers and AV receivers.

Design

When it comes to design, the Echo Dot and Home Mini are worlds apart. The Echo Dot is clearly identifiable as a piece of tech, with a plastic coating in black or white, buttons on top, and an Amazon logo on the side. The Home Mini took a more organic approach, with a felt top that comes in in chalk, coral, or charcoal, and no prominent buttons or logo. The winner comes down to personal preference.

The Verdict

If you keep track of your week with Google Calendar, stream your entertainment via Chromecast, or otherwise lean toward Google as your tech giant of choice, the Google Home Mini could be a worthwhile investment, even with the current lack of compatible devises.

 If you’re more interested in a device that can help you instantly set up a smart home, and tend to stream through Amazon Music or Apple Music, the Amazon Echo Dot will likely be the best smart assistant for your home.

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