Get an Amazon Echo Dot for 99p

A few weeks back we covered how you could get a free google home mini through Spotify, shortly after this was published the story was picked up on several major sits and stock quickly ran out. Now Amazon is running a similar deal where if you sign up to it’s music streaming service you can get an echo dot for just 99p.

The terms state you must sign up to its family plan which costs £14.99 a month and you will then be given a code to get the echo dot at the reduced price. The offer won’t last long and if you don’t fancy paying £14.99 for music check out our deals for 4 months free Apple Music, 3 month Spotify for 99p or 3 month free Google Play Music.

If you want to take advantage of the Amazon offer simply click here.

Using Overcast on my Apple Watch in a smart home is my new method of enjoying Podcasts

Anyone who has followed us for some time will probably know that I love smart speakers, over the past few years I’ve owned Amazon Alexa speakers, Google Home’s and HomePod’s. Currently I use my HomePod for most of my music needs and home automation but I also have multiple Google Home mini’s for communicating around the house, some smart home automation and for playing my local radio station around the house.

One thing I love to do is listen to podcasts, I tend to run them via overcast on my Apple Watch and AirPods. I love Overcast and think it is one of the best podcast apps put there, however, I recently tried connecting my Apple Watch to my Google Home Mini and I was impressed enough to now ditch the need to wear my AirPods around the house. Now I must state that the bluetooth range isn’t amazing from the speaker to the watch if I go from one end of the house to the other, however, for my needs of listening to the podcast in the room that i’m in is perfect for my needs.

Personally I use Overcast syncing to the Apple Watch so I can enjoy podcasts without my iPhone nearby so I can in effect leave my iPhone on it’s wireless charger in another room and just enjoy podcasts with just my watch and my google mini. For anyone interested in trying this out simply say to your Google Home device “hey google enter pairing mode” then on the Apple Watch open settings -> Bluetooth and under devices you will see the name of your bluetooth speaker now tap and wait for it to connect.

Amazon & Google Smart Speaker Wars

Since Amazon first launched their smart speaker Alexa, Google has been hot in their heels Both are fighting for market share around the globe whilst Apple lags behind with their aim at the premium smart speaker price range

Every Black Friday and Christmas we often see both Amazon and Google discounting their speakers Amazon has just launched its Spring Sale, with several discounts, on its own devices. Their latest version of the Amazon Echo Dot just £29.99. Google isn’t far behind to match it with a great Google Home Mini deal at just £17.99 Spotify are still currently running their free Google mini when you sign up for family sharing.

Apple Music expands to the Amazon Fire TV

Apple Music is steadily expanding its territory on third party devices, Apple introduced Amazon Echo support in the USA back in December and is now rolling it out to the Fire TV as well.

Apple says support will be coming to the U.K. in the coming weeks. To start using Apple Music on Fire TV, enable the Apple Music skill in the Alexa app, you can then ask Alexa to play your favourite song, artist etc. ensuring you say Apple Music in the phrase for Alexa to understand. If you already activated Apple Music for Amazon Echo, it should be available on Amazon Fire TV automatically.

Original source 9to5mac

Amazon error gives a user access to 1,700 voice recording from a stranger

an Alexa in Germany attempted to access his own voice history as per GDPR rules, however, he suddenly found he was able to listen to around 1,700 voice recording from a stranger after an Amazon employee sent the wrong files via a link. The company is obviously wants to avoid these types of incidents but puts this down to human error.

In a statement provided to TechCrunch who originally reported on the incident an Amazon spokesperson said “This was an unfortunate case of human error and an isolated incident,” “We have resolved the issue with the two customers involved and have taken steps to further improve our processes. We were also in touch on a precautionary basis with the relevant regulatory authorities.”

After the user who was mistakenly given access reported the error to Amazon, but didn’t hear back initially, however, Amazon deleted the files from the link. Unfortunately the action was too late as the user had already downloaded them to his computer. A man and woman can be heard speaking in the recordings, according to the report. A local publication who was given access to the files was able to determine the identity of the user based on details from the recordings.

Apple Music is coming to the echo

Apple Music users will soon be able to enjoy their music collection on amazon echos, in a statement released by Amazon the ability is being added as an Alexa skill.

Once it’s available, you’ll simply add the Apple Music skill in the Alexa app and then link your Apple Music account. After that, you’ll be able to use a command along the lines of ‘Alexa, ask Apple Music to play …’

Music has always been one of Alexa’s most popular features and today we’re excited to announce that Apple Music will be available on Echo devices beginning the week of December 17.

Customers will be able to ask Alexa to play their favorite songs, artists, and albums—or any of the playlists made by Apple Music’s editors from around the world, covering many activities and moods. Customers will also be able to ask Alexa to stream expert-made radio stations centered on popular genres like Hip-Hop, decades like the 80s, and even music from around the world, like K-Pop. Just ask Alexa to play Beats 1 to hear Apple Music’s global livestream including in-depth artist interviews— all completely ad-free.

This will be a welcome addition as currently the only way to listen is via a HomePod or Sonos speaker, Amazon offers a variety of cheaper echo devices.

Deezer comes to the Amazon Echo

The French music service Deezer has finally made its way to the Amazon Echo, up until today Echo users were able to use Amazon’s own music service or Spotify.

Users will need the Premium+ Deezer account to work instead of the free version. Amazon says “We’re working on making user-created playlists available, but for now you can ask Alexa to play any Deezer playlist.”

Alexa is having voice issues

Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa is having some issues currently, with lots of users reporting that their echo is either suffering with delayed responses or just total loss of connection. Down Detector is showing widespread outages reports. Some user are seeing messages on their app that Amazon are aware of an issue and are working on it.

HomePod vs Amazon Echo vs Google Home Part 1

Today we purchased the HomePod in store at Apple and I have to say the thing that really sold it for me was the sound when I first walked in, I was very impressed how it filled the store with music (granted the song of choice left a lot to be desired). I had already seen several online reviews so all my questions had been answered apart from the sound quality which is why I didn’t pre-order it.

After I made my purchase I came home and performed an unboxing live on YouTube and then pitted the HomePod against it’s main competitors the Amazon Echo and the Google Home. The reason I wanted to test all three was simple, I already owned the other two and I wanted a decent sounding speaker.

Being part of both amazon and google user group I have seen the HomePod slated before any public release and so I wanted to show how it compares. Take a look at part one of our comparison videos and let us know in the comments what else you would like us to test.

How to set recurring alarms on the Amazon Echo

Setting alarms on the Amazon Echo is a popular thing especially to remind people to do the same things regularly such as taking medication etc. up until recently users would have to do this manually every time but now users can set recurring alarms.

To set any alarm with the Echo, you will have to use a voice command instead of the app or Web client as neither of these let you manually create an alarm. When you’re near your Echo, say, “Alexa, set an alarm.”

The Echo will ask when you want the alarm to go off. Reply with the time. If you want the alarm to repeat, specify how often. You can choose from every day, weekdays, weekends or once per week on a given day. Alexa will then confirm that you’ve set up the alarm and let you know when it’s scheduled to repeat.

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